Liukin is happy Russian gymnastics is becoming a force again. It looks like Valentina called him the greatest coach ever or something, and he says he was never referred to as such, but is flattered since she’s such a respected woman. He says he’s on great terms with all the Russian coaches, especially those in WAG. If anyone’s wondering about Valeri’s New Years plans, he’ll be in Moscow. Asked about what Nastia’s doing these days, he says she’s a businesswoman and a commentator for NBC.
He really liked the Russian team at Worlds and appreciates how they brought young athletes, then goes on to say that the US team was a bit jealous since they only had one debutante there (who did he forget about? Morgan or Jade? ‘cause wasn’t this the first big senior meet for both?). Liukin praises Eremina for being skilled and beautiful to watch, and he has no doubt that given her strong character, Aliya will come back to her former level after having the baby. Talking about how the US team did at Worlds, he says it wasn’t their best performance, and they had a hard time at the beginning when Ragain got injured. He’s happy Morgan got to prove herself and get AA gold after training for it.
Asked how US team manages to get good results and if they have a sports psychologist on the team, he says that they don’t have a psychologist, they just solve their problems themselves. He acknowledged the Russian contribution to American success after he’s asked if it’s true that Morgan’s coach is Russian. Simone will come back, and if she performs well, she can make it to Worlds next year.
She’s not pleased with herself after Worlds, and the mistakes on floor made her see that she needs to work even harder. Her ankle injury got worse and she needs to take care of that. She mentions the warm-up conditions at Worlds, saying they only had 3 minutes per person on each event, compared to 15-20 minutes for the team, like they were used to have, but she says she won’t complain because they all went through that. She would’ve done better without the injury, but she’s proud she competed and didn’t give up, which is important for her. She says that three days before the competition there were talks on whether she should withdraw and there were doubts on whether she could perform, but she insisted she can do it.
Her next competition will be the Toyota Cup. The next big goal is the team competition at 2018 Euros. She wants to be a designer after she’s done with gymnastics.