Both Fernando Torres and Gary Cahill spoke about taking Tuesday evening’s game at Basel as a lesson in the wake of defeat, having not yet grabbed first place in our Champions League group due to the late goal conceded.
A win is still needed from the final match at home to Steaua Bucharest to guarantee the benefits of going into the knockout stage draw as group winners, although a point would be enough should Basel fail to win at Schalke on the same night.
Torres, who came on late in the first half in Switzerland for injured Samuel Eto’o, acknowledged a much improved display will be needed when we host Steaua in a fortnight’s time.
‘We need to learn from the defeat,’ he said. ‘Now we know we are in the next round but we need to win one more game to qualify first which will be much better. Defeats make you think you have to improve but we have another group game coming, and we have another important game coming at the weekend, and we have to play much better.
‘We know Basel from last year when we played them in the Europa League so it is not a surprise for us how good they are, and they have been better than us in these two games in the Champions League. They have beaten Chelsea twice so they can beat Schalke.’
For Cahill, the team’s failure to safely negotiate the final few minutes to take something from the game must be avoided in the future.
‘Sometimes when you play like that, you go so far in a game and it is still 0-0 and you think okay, it has not been a great night for us but we will go away and take the point,’ said the central defender.
‘That has been the most disappointing thing, we got to the 87th minute and normally we would see that out and take the point.
‘We were under a lot of pressure in the game and I thought we defended well overall. Basel asked a lot of questions of us and to concede a goal like that was disappointing.
‘Basel played really well and we were below par after what was a fantastic performance at the weekend [against West Ham]. Obviously when you lose games you must do better and you analyse the game and look at what you did wrong, and I am sure in the next couple of days we will do that.’