Three-time Champions League winner Samuel Eto’o said his Anzhi team had a tough time in their season opener, he said Monday.
Goals from Eto'o and Ivorian striker Lacina Traore gave Anzhi a 2-1 comeback win over FC Kuban on Sunday.
Kuban had earlier taken the lead in bizarre fashion as Igor Lolo’s pass deflected off Joao Carlos’ outstretched leg and looped into the net.
"It was a tough match, but the main thing is that we got the three points and started the championship well," he said in comments on the Anzhi website that appeared to be filmed Sunday.
"We know that first matches are always difficult. I hope that in the next game we'll be feeling better than today."
In comments before the game, Eto'o had promised to score.
"Oh, right, but the more important thing is that the team wins," responded Eto'o, when asked if it might be a good idea to make a promise like that before every game.
The Dagestan-based club next face Hungarian side FC Honved in their Europa League qualification round return leg Thursday before taking on FC Rostov in the Russian league Sunday.
The big-spending Caucasus-based club finished fifth in the league last year, securing a Europa League spot, and are now targeting a top-two finish in order to reach the Champions League.
Eto’o, 31, signed a three-year contract with Anzhi in August and scored 13 goals in 23 games that season.