"The difference between Ukraine and Greece is amazing, after seven years there I am surprised with the weather and the people I met at Thessaloniki. I had forgotten how nice is that, I was only living it for a few days on vacation in my motherland. Thessaloniki is much more similar with my city, Rio De Janeiro, than the Ukrainian towns. There is a nice beach, nice shops, I am very happy and satisfied for being here.
I had spoken with Mr. Michel and he explained me the situation with many details. The project he had in his mind, the life in that city and Greece and especially the fans, he told me that they are different than the Ukrainians and supporting massively the team. I see the excellent organization of the club, the members of the staff are helping us with everything. I was not expecting so many nice things here to be honest, I expected much less.
There was a time when I was not playing in official games, but I remained in solid fitness condition. Many individual trainings in Ukraine and my motherland kept my body in good condition. I am feeling very well, I think that I have reached a solid level and in 15 days, if the manager wants it of course, I will be ready to play and help PAOK become a better side.
In Ukraine, I was mostly performing as right fullback and this is definitely my preferred position. During the last season I also performed as left fullback and even central midfielder. I can play anywhere my manager wants me. The most important thing for me is performing well in the games. It is decisive when the manager trusts you with a starting lineup position, especially when this is not your natural position.
I have watched some games of PAOK from the end of last season, since we started talking two months ago, and I wanted to collect some information about the team and its players. It is very positive that there were and there are many top-level players in the squad. I was positively surprised with the performances in the Play Offs and if we be equally passionate and strong in Champions League's qualifiers, we may reach the group stage.
I was aware that PAOK were interested in signing Matheus and Sakhov, and about other teams as well. Matheus especially is a good friend of me and my family, an excellent player, he came close to joining PAOK, but there was a lucrative offer from China he could not reject. Boyko is a great goalkeeper and Zozulya a very strong footballer with running, pressing, creating chances and scoring ability. So, I am not surprised that PAOK were interested in signing them.
Sakhov is a midfielder and we had created a duo in many games of the last season. He is one of the most quality players I have ever been with, with excellent technical ability. He could do the unpredictable during the game, with a move or a shot. He is a play maker that can control the tempo of the game with success, press high in order for the team to win the ball and create counter attacks. I am sure that the fans and the journalists will have the same opinion with me when they will see him in action.
The targets of PAOK are high, higher than those of Dnipro. There is a great difference. Playing with PAOK at Champions League would be tougher than what we did with Dnipro, when we almost won the title. Europa League and Champions League are different competitions. I wish things to go well, to help the team and manage to advance to Champions League's group stage.
Vladan Ivic is the manager who changed the icon of the team last season, he is young, talented and was the manager of U-20 before. He is a hard worker, correcting every detail, letting nothing go wrong. Every training is well organized, with great discipline, good instructions especially in tactics, which is his strongest part. My first impressions are very positive, I enjoy working with a manager who is always in the field, working hard in order for things to go well for us.
I have not spoken with my compatriot Lino, of course I know him as footballer but not personally. In Brazil, we were members of different teams. But I have learned that we was a member of PAOK, the fans loved him and did many nice things here", said the 30-year-old former player of Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk at SDNA.