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26 Nov, 2008 14:15

Zenit lack ‘killer instinct’ – Advocaat

Zenit lack ‘killer instinct’ – Advocaat

Zenit coach Dick Advocat says his side crashed out of the Champions League because it lacked the “killer instinct”. A home 0-0 draw with Juventus and Real Madrid’s win at BATE Borisov mean the Saint Petersburg side will finish third in Group H

Juventus, who had already qualified from the group stage, played with their strongest team, despite claims that coach Claudio Ranieri would give some rest to his leaders.

Throughout the game Zenit controlled the ball and Juventus relied on counter attacks. Both teams created many chances to score but failed to take advantage of them.

Zenit’s Portuguese star Danny had three excellent opportunities, but couldn’t beat the Italian’s keeper, Alex Manninger. Pavel Pogrebnyak hit the post in the second half. Arshavin and Zyrianov also failed to put the ball in the net.

At the press-conference after the game Dick Advocaat openly admitting Zenit was let down by their lack of instinctive finishing in front of goal.
“I am disappointed that we create so many chances, but fail to take advantage of them. This is nothing to do with the level of our team – looking at the game Zenit showed during the group stage, it’s obvious we had had to earn a lot more points in the group,” Dick Advocaat said.

In the other Group H game, Real Madrid were stronger than BATE Borisov in Belarus. Raul scored the winner on 7 minutes. 1-1 it ended.

The score means Juventus and Real qualify for the playoffs, Zenit has five points and stay third, while BATE prop up the table with two points.   

Zenit will play in the UEFA Cup playoffs next spring, a tournament they won in 2008.