NEWS | 27/04/2021 | PHOTOGRAPHER: GETTY IMAGES"We struggled with their press, but we changed things around and were far better after the break", declared the boss.
“We play again on Saturday and we have to be in good shape for the return leg because tonight’s was a very evenly matched game. That’s what we’ll be up against at their place. I’m sure the return leg will be tough and we’re going to have to manage the players’ game time, there’s no question about that”.
“Karim is so impressive. I’m delighted for him. I’m not surprised by what he does in every game, but I back all of my players in the same way. My players are the most important ones in all of this. The effort that they’ve put in once again tonight is all because they believe in what we’re doing. There are struggles because you’re up against another team, it’s a Champions League semi-final and you’ve got to dig in, but I’m deligted for them because we’re still in it and we now know that we have to go to London and score goals and try and win the game”.
“We need all of them. That’s true. At least that’s what we try and do. It’s no mean feat to reach a Champions League semi-final against very strong opponents who don’t concede many goals. Of their 20 games, I think they’ve kept clean sheets in 16. It is what it is. We had to dig in, but we’re on the right track and believe in what we do and we’re never going to score three of four goals in every match. With every game it becomes tougher to score goals”.
“I’m very proud of my players. We prepare for the games with the aim of winning them. I’m the manager, but we all prepare together with the players and we believe in what we prepare. We know we have a lot of quality and that we can produce it. That’s what we try to do in every game. But it’s not easy, because it’s tough to play every three days against very good teams. But we believe in ourselves and we feel confident for the return leg. We’re going to play to win. We know we have to score there”.
“We had to change something at half-time because the first half didn’t go the way we wanted it to, especially in terms of pressure. We made some changes and we pressed a bit higher up and more as a unit. We did it much better in the second half. We were more compact and in the end I think it’s a fair result. We’re deserved our goal”.
Will Ramos be available for the return leg?
“I hope he’ll be with us, but I don’t know right now. Sergio still hasn’t trained with the team, so we’re waiting to see if he joins the group. I hope he can return as soon as possible and the same goes for the other players out injured. Sergio, Lucas, whose injury is more complex, Ferland, Fede. I want all my players to be available”.