Chus Mateo: “We never lost hope, but our strength failed us”


Real Madrid coach, Chus Mateo, regretted the defeat this Sunday against Panathinaikos that frustrated their assault on the second Euroleague in a row, despite the fact that they “never” lost “hope”, although they arrived more fatigued than their rival after a few minutes. finals where the title was decided at the Uber Arena in Berlin.

“Panathinaikos deserved to win, they played a great second half. It is the final of a very tough season. We did a great job all season and now we are talking about a match. Of course, it is the final and it is the match that makes you think that Whether you win or lose, you have done a good job or not,” he said at a press conference.

“We never lost hope, but our strength failed us, fatigue at the end of the game. I am very proud of the attitude of the players. We have not won because there was a team that played better than us. It is difficult to accept that we could have won two Euroleagues in a row , but you have to look at the work,” he added.

“I am very proud of my players, they did a good job. They have fought to win two Euroleagues in a row, we have not achieved it but we have tried, it is not easy to win two titles in a row. We fought until the end. We did a good job but they have very good players too. They raised the physical level and we started to lose our energy, we shot threes a lot. We got confused, we thought the easy way was the three-point shot, but where we have to take advantage is in the paint. “Sometimes things don’t go the way you expect,” he added.

Mateo insisted on several keys to the defeat, such as that search for the fast track of the triple, the lack of strength and the accumulation of fouls that he did not fully understand in the referees. “Sloukas was a deserved MVP because he scored baskets in decisive moments. It is not easy to reach a final. Now we have two options, cry, which we will do tonight, or get up, which we will do starting tomorrow. We are going to fight until the end “This is sport, now we have to show that the character of Real Madrid is to congratulate the rival and continue moving forward,” he stated.

“All my players gave their best. After the break we started to lose some control because we didn’t play with the same discipline as at the beginning. With Tavares and Poirier we have to play with more discipline, we got confused trying to score from outside, instead of with the aggressiveness of the first half. I’m a little confused with the refereeing. There was also some frustration, a technical on Poirier, but those are things that can happen. I don’t want it to be a complaint but you hope that the level of fouls is even,” he said. .

Furthermore, Mateo pointed to the calendar, when Barça awaits him on Wednesday at the start of the Endesa League semi-final playoff for the best of five games. “It’s a very tough schedule, we don’t stop, now we play against Barça on Wednesday. It’s very hard for the athletes but it is what it is. We try not to complain about this situation. We are going to finish with more than 90 games, there are too many games “It is not easy to have good form all year round, we try to play as well as possible every day, but it is not easy, with the level of the Euroleague and the ACB,” he noted.

“Without a doubt. We have done a great job this year, it has been worth it. Tomorrow we have to return, feel the team and continue fighting with our fans to try to beat Barça, who will be more rested than us,” he concluded.