Former PSG scout Luca Cattani held the first press conference on January 14 in the new position of sports director of Spartak. The main quotes are in the material “RBC Sport”
Photo: FC “Spartak”
About Spartak’s strategy
“What does strategy mean? If there are good Russian players, then they should be in Spartak. Svinov, Khlusevich, Klassen are good examples. Now it is important for us to quickly find the chemistry that will lift Spartak higher in the championship standings than it is now. It is important to quickly return to the leading positions and strengthen for the future.”
About Spartak’s transfers in the winter transfer window
“I know the Russian market well, because a couple of years ago I already had the opportunity to come to work in one of the Russian clubs. Then I did not accept the offer, but studied the Russian market. For example, Danila Prutsev (midfielder of FC Krylya Sovetov, RB Sport reported interest in the player from Spartak – RBC) familiar to me since the time of the game in FC Chertanovo. When Spartak approached me last summer, I prepared the club’s strategy and compiled a list of players worth buying. Khlusevich and Klassen were in it. Goalkeeper Svinov was recommended by former Spartak goalkeeper and member of the coaching staff Artem Rebrov. I completely trust him. Of course, I coordinated all transfers with the head coach.
On signing striker Nicholson
“Buying forward Nicholson is a risk, but I took it because I took into account the peculiarities of the transfer market. If we wait for the development of the transfer campaign, then this player could double in price. Spartak needed a scorer. But it’s difficult: there are 20 teams that need a striker. And there are conditionally three forwards available in winter. We are looking at who we can take: Holland from Borussia, Vlahovic from Fiorentina – it is unrealistic. A few more people follow, and then Nicholson.
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About learning Russian
“Out of respect for the country that accepted me, I have to learn Russian. I’m sorry I haven’t done this yet. So far, there just wasn’t enough time for that. But I will try to start learning the language.”
On the departure of the extra ninth legionnaire from Spartak
“Spartak has players who are listed on the market. Some of our legionnaires will definitely have to leave (Now there are nine legionnaires in Spartak. According to the limit on legionnaires, which is valid in the Russian championship, the team can have only eight foreign players in the application – RBC). We have already decided on this player.”
About Jordan Larson
“I like Larson, moreover, head coach Vanoli said good things about him. He is a very good and quality player. Now he needs to return to his previous form and the fans will again admire him as part of the team.
About the championship of Spartak during the work of Cattani
“I hope that with me Spartak will again become a champion. With his ambitions, he should not be in the positions he is now. I am sure that the management of the club also aims to return to the leading positions.”
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On returning to Spartak after the loan of Gus Thiel and Alex Kral
“I have to keep an eye on all the players who belong to Spartak. Thiel is having a great season with Dutch side Feyenoord. I would like him to play for Spartak now, but under the terms of the lease he cannot be returned until the end of the season. Alex Kral, who is now at West Ham, is also a good player. In addition, we keep in mind the situation with the limit on foreign players.
On the possible departure of Spartak defender Zhigot from the club in winter
“In winter, he definitely won’t go anywhere. I fully agree with the fans, Gigot is incredibly important to us. He has six months left on his contract, and he has the right to make his own decision. But for all this time, Gigot has shown great loyalty to Spartak, he and his agent behave very respectfully and do not consider leaving in January.
About work in “Spartacus”
“What is my job? Offer solutions to various problems in the sports block. New players are my area of responsibility and my decisions. I am not a king and not a tsar-father in Spartak, I am a manager who is responsible for the sports block, and does not manage everything.
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On interaction with Zarema Salikhova and Leonid Fedun
“I told Zarema Salikhova which players I want to buy. I had a meeting with her and with Fedun. It doesn’t matter which one of them offered me a job. There are a lot of little things that I just feel uncomfortable contacting the club president Fedun, because he pays me to solve problems, and not write to him about each one.
On possible transfers to Spartak from Zenit
“I have never considered any player from the current Zenit squad.
On the competition with Zenit for the championship
Zenit can’t win forever. Sooner or later, someone will come and throw him off the throne. First of all, we need to close the colossal gap from the leading group. With the arrival of a good young Russian player, we have more opportunities to get closer. Let’s not talk about Zenith now. I have to tell the players to stop losing points with Arsenal and Rostov. I know that the expectations at Spartak are the highest, but before thinking about Zenit, we need to return Spartak to the dimension where it deserves to be.”
On the duration of work in Spartak
“Someone, of course, can bet that I will be cured in a week. Everything is possible in our life.”