World Cup qualifier Group 2
Greek coach Otto Rehhagel has urged caution ahead of their opening World cup qualifier against Albania, despite many people now installing them as favourites for the group after their shock victory at Euro 2004.
“I am always very level-headed about it. We played well and have a good team, but there is a fine line between victory and defeat.
“We are in a very difficult group and everyone wants to play in the World Cup, especially Turkey and the Danes, because it is such a unique experience” added the German coach.
“We have to seize the opportunity. I still have all of the players who were in Portugal and might add a couple of youngsters
“There is already a lot riding on the Albania game. In the last preliminary competition, we lost our first two matches. It will be a tough fixture,” he added.
Rehhgal’s caution can be traced to Albania’s recent improved form under fellow German Hans-Peter Breigal, as well as the fact that Albania defeated Greece 2-0, the last time the sides met in a 2002 World cup qualifier.
Albania believe that playing the Greeks at their own game may be the key to success for the Balkan side, who have not lost at home since Briegel took over.
“I believe we will have a positive result against Greece,” says midfielder Ervin Skela.
“We all play in the same way the Greeks did in the European Championship”, added teammate Altin Lala.
Albania travel to Georgia next Wednesday for their second game in Group Two, which also includes Denmark, Turkey, Ukraine and Kazakhstan.