He excelled on the field and at the microphone. Vladimír Coufal contributed a quality performance to West Ham’s draw at Newcastle and then entertained football England with an interview in which he demonstrated wit, insight, modesty and significantly improved English.
After a long time, the Czech footballer experienced a match in the Premier League that really suited him. In St. James’ Park skillfully tamed the offensive stars of favored Newcastle and contributed to a 1:1 draw, which meant hope for a better tomorrow for Hammer fans.
The 30-year-old wing-back arrived in front of the microphone of the club’s television with a smile on his face, even though, as he admitted, he had a physically extremely demanding duel.
“I’ve played a few tough games in my career, but this one was definitely one of the toughest. It was up, down, up, down. A proper English Premier League game, or maybe something more,” Coufal reported.
Perhaps the huge pace suited the Czech defender, and he was also blown away by the atmosphere at the stadium, where he had wanted to play since he was a child, when he saw the film Goal!, in which the fictional amateur footballer Santiago Muňez made a career in Newcastle.
“My dream came true. It was amazing. With those fanatical fans, in a hostile atmosphere, that’s exactly the kind of environment I like,” smiled Coufal slyly.
He immediately described the unfortunate beginning of the match, which he described as literally “horror”.
West Ham conceded in the first minute, but Joe Willock’s goal was disallowed because Miguel Almirón’s cross went wide. But before all possible replays could be played on TV, Callum Wilson burst between the stoppers and coolly put The Magpies into the lead. The third minute was running.
Vladimír Coufal at the end of the duel. He is assisted by Dan Burn. | Photo: Reuters
“Really awful, I’ve never experienced anything like it. I hadn’t even touched the ball and I’d already seen it twice in our goal. I was like, ‘So what’s this about?’ laughed Coufal.
Talk then turned to Lucas Paquet. The Brazilian star is starting to shine after an embarrassing start to his England engagement. The participant of the world championship in Newcastle equalized and was one of the best players on the set.
“He needed to adapt, to find out what the Premier League is about. But now he’s gaining confidence and he’s excellent. He never panics with the ball, his technical skills are incredible,” commented Coufal on the qualities of his 25-year-old teammate, who in recent weeks dropped another Czech international from the starting line-up Tomáš Souček.
“He plays like he’s at Copacabana,” laughed Coufal.
“He just enjoys his football. Whenever I see him with the ball, I enjoy it too. I don’t want to disturb him in any way. Just do what you want, pass me if you want, if not, fine. I’ll fight for you ,” amused the Czech player and the club editor.
“Some players have these skills, some have to fight. That’s the way it is,” concluded Coufal, before the editor praised his performance. “You were literally flying. You looked like Coufi a year ago. You were great, we can say that,” he noted.
He embarrassed the Czech footballer. Coufal admitted that he does not like to evaluate his own performances.
“I just try to do the best for my team. I would do anything for the team’s success, that’s my game and that’s all,” he stated modestly.
Interview with Vladimír Coufal. | Video: www.youtube.com