Zorya Luhansk ready to make history vs. Man United - Yuriy Vernydub
ODESSA, Ukraine -- Zorya Luhansk coach Yuriy Vernydub has said the Ukrainian club are ready to "make history" when they take on Manchester United in the Europa League on Thursday.
United need a point from the game in Odessa to be certain of qualification from Group A but could progress to the knockout stages with a defeat if Feyenoord fail to beat group leaders Fenerbahce in Rotterdam.
Zorya have yet to register a victory in the group and go into the game having lost 3-2 at home to Dnipro last Saturday.
But with the club expecting a 27,000 sellout crowd for the biggest game in the club's history, Vernydub said they would be chasing an historic victory.
"Every team has chances," he told a prematch news conference at the Chornomorets Stadium. "Of course United need these points, but I think we can make history and it is why we will play as well as we can to get the victory.
"I admit our problems, we all have them. We lost our first game against United but we played well, our players were very good and our chances are strong. We want a positive result and a positive meaning for Zorya."
United arrived in Odessa with manager Jose Mourinho having left players including Memphis Depay, Morgan Schneiderlin, Matteo Darmian and Michael Carrick in Manchester.
But with captain Wayne Rooney leading the squad following his suspension against Everton at the weekend, Vernydub said he doubted United would be worried.
"I won't lie, we were very nervous and afraid against United at Old Trafford," he added. "I doubt that such a team as Manchester United will be nervous about games like this one. The whole squad is very famous and professional.
"They should show themselves in the game and get the result because of such players as Rooney, Ibra, [Ander] Herrera, [Marcus] Rashford, [Marouane] Fellaini -- so many great players.
"And Mourinho is such a great coach. He won important leagues all over Europe and the Champions League, so he cannot be afraid or nervous.
"Of course United have had their problems, but I think they will also do their best against us. I like the coach and club very much, but we wanted this game and wanted to show ourselves very much.
"I want to learn from Mourinho. He is my favourite coach and I hope he can teach me how to reach his level and how to be the best."
Mark Ogden is a senior football writer for ESPN FC. Follow him @MarkOgden_