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Chelsea vs. Napoli: Di Matteo, Player and Press Reaction

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Because that was such an incredible, awesome and unbelievable game, we'll extend the euphoria a little more by listening to what the players, the manager and, if you care, the press have to say. Credit to Gautam_CFC for posting the manager/player comments in the reaction thread, but with the amount of GIFs in there they're pretty easily lost.

Quotes after the jump.


"It's true that many people said that it will be my last match in the Champions League but the story continues. It was important for us to qualify. Our spirit was more than positive - there was much joy in the end.
"I am not master of my destiny, but I am happy here. What is important is living moments like this one and I hope that I will still live these moments."


"We proved we're a team tonight, and I think first and foremost that is what we are all about," he told ITV. "That desire, that togetherness. As I said before, players coming on, sticking together when it really mattered. We showed what Chelsea are really made of tonight."


"We're just happy to be in the hat. At 3-1 down coming here you're just happy to get through. We will enjoy it tonight and wait and see. They [Real Madrid and Barcelona] are the big two but we have a lot of strength in there. If we play with the same desire as tonight we can take on anyone."

Di Matteo in the Mixed Zone:

"It was a fantastic effort and a fantastic game as well, to watch two great teams on the pitch,"
"I think we made history tonight because we were in such a difficult position before the game. We knew it would take a lot to go through and the performance of the whole team was outstanding."

Di Matteo in the Press Conference

'We tried to go back to basics, to be solid and we were confident with our quality we could score. I don't think about myself, I just want to win games for Chelsea. That's all my mind is focused on. It meant a lot to the club to stay in the Champions League and you could see how much it meant to the players.'

Press Reports:

Chelsea 4 Napoli 1; agg 5-4 (aet): match report - Telegraph

This was like watching two heavyweights throwing punches, sometimes blindly, sometimes clinging to the ropes. This was a time for real men to take control, for leaders to come to the fore

Chelsea 4-1 Napoli (Chelsea win 5-4 on agg) | Champions League last-16 | Football | The Guardian

This was a night so devoted to attacking football there was seldom any sense the fun would stop there. Chelsea, outpassed early on, looked the stronger and hungrier side in extra-time, and it was finally rewarded when Drogba turned the ball into Ivanovic's path for the game's decisive moment.


What a night! Plenty of talk before the game was about the possibility of another European classic at the Bridge and that is exactly what those watching enjoyed.

Chelsea v Napoli: how the players rated - Telegraph

Jonathan Liew runs the rule over the players on a famous Champions League night at Stamford Bridge

Quarters await after lengthy battle by Chelsea's old guard - European - Football - The Independent

If this is the result of player power then maybe caretaker manager Roberto Di Matteo - who was jumping for joy at the final whistle - should just let his veterans do it their way.

And one final stat:

3 - Chelsea are the 3rd English club to lose a European Cup 1st leg tie by 2+ goals & still progress (after Man Utd '57 & Leeds '92). Rare.

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