Prior to the game against Tukums 2000/Telms team in the sixth round of Optibet Virsliga – team captain Raimonds Krollis was invited to an interview to reflect on the season so far while discussing other important topics.
”The start of the season hasn’t been good enough for us – our perfomance has been shaky. In one game we perform well, in the other we aren’t as good. We have to find the stability and the level that we – the players and coach wants to see. Of course, there are many different reasons behind it – one of them is that after last season we have thought of ourselves as the highest level team, however, we still have to understand that we aren’t as experienced. Without relentlessness and a sharp game in battles, it’s hard to achieve the results that we really want, but we will work on things and continue to look for the answers on how to get more consistent. If we are talking about the differences between this and the previous season the scheme has changed. We still try to play a fast-paced football but it’s more balanced and isn’t relying as much on the physical condition. The player qualities have grown – they have developed individually into better players.”
”The team this year is coached by Jurgis Kalns and we have a good relationship. It’s not like it’s his first day in the office – he worked with the team last year. The band has been created in both ways. As for me being the team captain, I have developed skills that were not as useful years ago. By nature, I’m not someone who wants to point out anyone’s mistakes or yell at them and because of that, I’m happy that my role as a captain has helped me to improve my communication skills – it’s easier to talk and to find the correct words in conversations with everyone on the team. In the football world, I don’t have anyone that I look up to, who I take as an example but tennis player Nick Kyrgios has demonstrated how things are done. If you are convinced about yourself and do what you wish to do and obviously are satisfied with it you just have to continue doing so and that’s a sort of a person I want to become.”
”Speaking of the games that the team has already played – none of them have been easy but for me personally, the hardest one emotionally was against Auda. When you don’t score an 11-meter penalty it’s hard to pull yourself together to continue the match. In any case, I have to say that it might be good that I didn’t score because even mistakes like these are a great learning process – a year or two ago I would have felt even worse than I did in that game. Sure I’m not as confident as I’d like to be, I don’t feel the goal the way I would want to be it’s not like I’m freaking out because that wouldn’t help my development at all. At the end of the day – if I carry on doing all the right things the goals will come. As for the penalty itself – I know exactly what went wrong – I made a psychological error. I have made this mistake before and I don’t understand why it happened again. The goalie didn’t read the kick, it was just a classic 11m penalty – I changed the decision on where to kick while running towards the ball. I just have to pull myself together and find the key to the goal and things will be alright.”
”At the start of the season, I was called up to the national team where for the first time I started in two games. I know that I could have shown myself better and once again we have to talk about consistency. Right now I don’t know why my role is with the national team because perfomance wise it’s really wavy for me. However, the most important thing is that the team is more united and the team spirit is showing and that is really necessary to fight for victories and to represent our country in honor.”
”And for sure I want to thank those that attend Valmiera FC games and support our team. For the squad and for me personally, it means a lot. I even want to say that it looks like the people that cheer for us have grown in numbers. We can feel support, especially at home and that allows me to feel something special. Unfortunately, it’s sad that our dressing room is in a different place and it makes it harder to communicate and meet the fans after the games. I also want to point out that even at away games we feel that we are being supported and lifted to play harder. Still here at home, the whole city is coming to the matches and it’s really lovely because it isn’t something that happens elsewhere. I hope that you will continue to support us and we will be able to make your happy with the results that we provide.”