Marrinez in relaxed mood ahead of crucials' final

Roberto Martinez smiles and reacts to the phrase “There comes a World Cup semifinalist” as he approaches the ESPN team that will talk to him at the Belgium base camp in Dedovsk. The interview is off to a good start: There’s probably no better way to greet him.

Hours away from what will be the most important game in his career and for the national team he currently coaches, a semifinal clash against France in Saint Petersburg, Martinez looks affable, relaxed and confident.

After a training session that had both rain and sunshine, Martinez, born in Spain, takes a few minutes to share his thoughts and feelings ahead of a game that could be one of the last two steps toward football heaven. It took several years and attempts for Belgium’s golden generation to show that they are ready to finally take that leap forward, and this coaching team has a lot to do with their current success.
When Belgium went out to Argentina in 2014, frustration could not conceal the fact that there would be more opportunities. A roster with most of its key players still under 25 meant that there was time to fulfill their potential. The objective, hard but realistic, was to be the best by 2018.

Martinez confirms that, “This players have been working together extraordinarily well for many years, and they deserve to be exactly where they are today.”

The coach does not look like a man at the crossroads of his professional journey. He smiles, mixes English with Spanish to say hello to the different journalists working at the base camp and shows no sign of being under pressure, something that might seem odd for a man in his position. But he knows that he has been working for two years to prepare for these seven games and that his players have the same commitment toward the goal.“I feel that the most important aspect we worked on was the notion of being a team,” Martinez says. “Individual skills and talent are important, but in these tournaments, it’s absolutely necessary to play as a team.”

Seven weeks ago, players and coaching team started working together at the base camp with the same purpose.

 Their potential as players would be of use only if they could create a collective soul that would be stronger than any individual attempt

Marrinez in relaxed mood ahead of crucials' final Marrinez in relaxed mood ahead of crucials' final Reviewed by SISI JOKE on July 10, 2018 Rating: 5

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