D. Gurskis: “BFL is very important for us, we’d like to show all our strengths in it”

Fall of 2020 will be maximally busy for the champions of Lithuania – FK Vytis. Kaunas’ team will take start in the national championship and will participate in two international tournaments – Champions League and Baltic Futsal League. President Darius Gurskis told us about how the club enters a difficult season in the midst of a coronavirus pandemic. 

– The start of the Lithuanian Championship was originally scheduled for early November, but due to the participation of our national team in the qualifying matches, it was decided to move it forward by two weeks. On November 1st the national team will play away game with Montenegro, and on November 8th will face them at home. So we will play our first match of the championship on November 14th.

It is clear that the epidemiological situation is correcting the plans of all championships. What are the restrictions in Lithuania?

We have had a meeting this week where some restrictions have been announced. First of all, it concerns spectators – all matches of the Lithuanian Championship will be held without fans, and this is a requirement of UEFA. As far as I know, other championships will also be forced to continue without spectators. Our Federation plans to monitor morbidity in municipalities and, if necessary, to transfer games from the «risk zone» to another municipality to the neutral arena. Another option is to assemble teams in the regions with the least number of cases and continue playing there. 

Is the player’s health likely to be under increased control?

Yes, we will have to measure their temperature and make sure they don’t have any symptoms before games and trainings. The testing of players for coronavirus is currently recommendatory.

Is it possible to say that the roster of FK Vytis is already full? 

I can’t say that we are 100% completed our roster so far, but we are still working on a reinforcement, but the core of the team has certainly been assembled. Our team will have the majority of the national team players, and they are the ones we count the most. In addition, three players from Ukraine will join us. This is the team we plan to play in the Champions League. 

So Vytis won’t use any help of players from far abroad?

Yes, we have decided that this season we will not attract players from abroad. We have big plans for the next season, in fact, we’re already preparing for it now because we want to do something huge. Unfortunately, I can’t provide any details yet.

Then let’s get back to the starting season. FK Vytis expects to start in the Champions League this autumn, is there any specifics about preparation for the tournament? 

Yes, the club ratings have already revealed, it will affects the draw. The format of the tournament is also known – the top-9 clubs will start on the stage of 1/16 finals, and the teams ranked 10th and lower will have to play in the preliminary round, which will consist of only one game. On October 27th, there will be a draw, where we will get the name of our opponents. We will also know the venue and date at the draw.

Have the guys been given a goal in the Champions League?

Of course, we’d like to advance in the next round. Plus, we’re in the seeded club list, we’re the 13th in the current ranking, so our opponent should be weaker than us. Of course, we can get the champions of France ACCS, which was unseeded, and I can’t call them weak – they have players like Ricardinho and Ortiz, it already speaks a lot. 

 

In December FK Vytis will start in another international tournament – Baltic Futsal League. So the club has to fight on three fronts at once. Any concerns about the length of the bench? Would guys have the strength to accomplish the maximum tasks they would always have to do? 

The BFL is very important to us – it is an international tournament, and we want to do our best in it. We did our best last season, and it will be this year. But during the coronavirus pandemic, it’s very difficult to jump ahead and talk about what’s going to happen in a few months. The situation has forced us to go step by step and to face the issues that stand here and now. We expected the Baltic Futsal League season to start in October, but had to reschedule its start to December. Now we see that the increase in the number of diseases in Europe is not declining, and it is difficult to imagine what will happen in December, so as long as I am inclined not to jump ahead – it is too difficult to plan anything in today’s realities.