10,000 spectators expected in Bologna, nearly 70 accredited journalists, 20 giant screens scattered in the streets of Bursa: On Wednesday evening, European basketball will turn its eyes towards Segafredo Stadium! But Tuesday afternoon, Virtus was still far from all that turmoil. And in front of the press, the Italian national team finished its last training with a smile. Sergio Scarello laughed in front of Turkish TV: “If I think Milos Teodosic will not be ready for the final, I’d better not attend the match.”
With one of the best coaching records in the world, the Alpine trans technician is on the cusp of the 17th trophy in his career. Not exactly the same as the sumIsaia Cordinier Who has the opportunity, at the age of 25, to grab his first title. Among the last players to remain in the shooting area, the former full-backs from Antibes, Evreux, Denin and Nanterre shared his impressions as he approached his first final.
Issa, how do you feel 24 hours after the European Cup final?
Concentration ! We did our job in training. We expect to play a very difficult match. We are ready to go to war simply. We know our supporters will be behind us, the room will be completely sold out. We’ve seen that this EuroCup format can be a double-edged sword, but we’re only one match away from the title. You will have to pay attention to the details.
Since the beginning of the season, Virtus Bologna has been demanding its main goal. You have 40 minutes to do 9 months’ work somehow…
Yes, we have put ourselves in a position to achieve our goal. Now it’s up to us to finish the job and have a serious match against a team that has nothing to lose, who will arrive with their teeth scratching the floor. It’s up to us to take care of that first of all.
“I only have one desire, to fight a battle on Earth”
Exactly, it’s a surprise poster. No one expected Bursaspor until now, they knocked out three big teams away from home (Partizan Belgrade, Sedevita Olimpica Ljubljana and Andorra). Does this necessarily lead to mistrust?
It’s what this contest looks like! Then, however, you have to beat everyone else up to achieve what you want, so we focus on what we have to do, on ourselves. We’ve been doing really well the past couple of days in training, and like I said, it’s war now! We are ready to go.
Since you qualified for Valencia last Wednesday, you have played two matches in La Liga (73-108 in Sassari and 79-57 against Brescia). Wasn’t there a somewhat illegitimate state of mind in those two meetings, playing with the handbrake, thinking of Bursaspor?
Above all, the schedule was very complicated as three matches were made in five days. We tried to be serious and applied. We always play to win anyway. We took one of two, which allowed us to keep up and trust.
Isaa Cordinier Tuesday afternoon during Virtus’ last training
(Photo: Matteo Marchi)
Against Bursaspor, is it the most important match of your career so far?
clearly! This is my first playoff game. I have a chance to play in a European final honestly, I’m very excited. I only have one desire, and that is to be on earth and to fight it.
Exactly, isn’t it the trap of not finding the right balance between emotions and focus?
That’s exactly! That’s why we’ll have to focus so hard on the details and our game plan and let your energy guide you towards that focus. That’s what’s good.
“I am very happy for my mother”
You came to Bologna for this anyway…
completely. I knew it was a club with big goals and high quality basketball. But it’s not over yet, the work isn’t over yet. We still have a game to win.
Will there be a statement of failure in the European season in the event of defeat in the final?
We’re here to win so say it if you like. The final was won, and was not played. Now that we’re in a position to finish the job, let’s finish it.
On Monday, the EuroCup MVP award was given to Mam Gaeth. What inspires you?
unbelievable. entitlement. I am very happy for him. Because of his career, it was he who was slightly marginalized in France, pushed out, traveled abroad, made his mark and got here. It really is well deserved, it has been dominant this year. Dominant is the word. We see that he has reached maturity in his game, he is surrounded by very good players who allow him to shine but also allows others to shine through his setting and his ends. It is impressive. But we’ll celebrate that later on the other hand (laughs). The most important thing is the final!
French duo to win small EuroCup
(Photo: Virtus Bologna)
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Program of the week on MCS Basket :
- May 11, 6:30 p.m.: Anadolu Efes-Izmir (Turkey Quarter-finals)
- May 11, 8.30pm: Virtus Bologna-Bursaspor (European Cup Final)
- May 11, 9pm: Real Madrid-Murcia (Endesa League, Round 33)
- May 12 at 7 pm: Red Star – Ljubljana (Adriatic League semi-finals).
- May 13, 6:30 pm: Izmir – Anadolu Efes (Turkey Quarter-finals)
- May 14 at 6 pm: Manresa-Barcelona (Day 34 of the Endesa League)
- May 14, 8:45 pm: Gran Canaria – Real Madrid (Day 34 of the Endesa League)
- May 15 at 5 pm: Fenerbahçe-Borsaspor (Turkey Quarter-finals)
- May 15 at 8:30 pm: Buducnost Podgorica – Partizan Belgrade (Adriatic League quarter-finals).