John Terry admitted emotions were mixed in the dressing room following Thursday night’s draw against Sparta Prague, which sets us up for a last 16 tie with Steaua Bucharest.
We were behind from the 16th minute until Eden Hazard’s injury-time equaliser sent us through with the draw we needed having won in the Czech capital a week earlier, but Terry was disappointed with the team’s performance on the night.
‘I was disappointed with the way we started but delighted to go through,’ the captain said. ‘We left it as late as we could and sometimes that’s the best way but it wasn’t our best performance. We’re in the next round though and we’re happy with that.
‘Qualification was an absolute must. We’re disappointed to be out of the Champions League and watching it on Tuesday and Wednesday night was enough motivation for us to kick on in this one, we’re in it to win it and nothing changes from that. After that we’d have a chance with the Super Cup, so still some big competitions to play for.’
Petr Cech echoed Terry’s sentiments, admitting it was a tough 90 minutes.
‘The game didn’t go the way we wanted,’ he said. ‘We wasted too many chances and they had a good counter-attack and managed to score. We had so many chances and their goalkeeper was brilliant, we hit the post, there were blocks and clearances and you felt it was one of those games but in the end we managed to break through, and it was the best finish.
‘They are quite a young team, very talented and fast on the counter. If you don’t take your chances it becomes more difficult and we wasted too many.’
Terry was also upset with the number of chances we allowed the visitors.
‘They had two counter-attacks in the last five minutes which is not good at all, so we’re disappointed with that, but we’re through,’ the 32-year-old said.
‘It’s about being clinical. We showed that in the last minute.We kept going and going, had a lot of attempts on goal and didn’t get it but the persistence was fantastic, and credit to us.
‘It was a great goal from Eden, the manager rested a couple tonight, and he was great to have on the bench. He came on, showed sharpness and got the goal to top it off.’