I have had my say on last night’s debacle both on the site, more so on twitter, maybe its time to let the managers have their say on last night’s proceedings.
First up we hear what Hearts manager Paulo Sergio has to say on last night’s debacle:
“Scottish football is not in trouble. There are great footballers in Scotland. There are great teams in Scotland too, stronger than ours.
“Sometimes in football the strong ones don’t win. I don’t believe that Maribor and Sion have stronger squads than Celtic or Rangers but that’s just football.
“Last week the national team beat Denmark. They did it very well, with class.”
On his own side’s fortunes Sergio said:
“There were a lot of differences. “In the first leg, we gave them too much space and respected them too much. Then we were just smelling the ball – we did not touch it for the first 45 minutes. Now things are changing and I am happy with that.”
Across the M8 we go to Ibrox and hear from Ally McCoist on Rangers exit to the hands of NK Maribor:
“We weren’t good enough in terms of taking our chances. You can’t miss chances that we missed over the two legs and expect to go through. The lads are bitterly, bitterly disappointed, as we all are.”
“In terms of their attitude, desire and effort, I think they’ve given us just about everything. They kept going right until the final whistle. We missed chances tonight to win a couple of games and having been in that situation myself on numerous occasions, I know how disappointed the boys will be. The second 45 minutes in Maribor cost us the tie.”
“We’ve been here before,” McCoist said. “You sink or you swim and sinking’s not an option, so you swim and we get back in tomorrow and we start swimming again and we’ll get on with it.
“We all have to stick together, every one of us, whether it’s the players, the management, the fans. We’ve all got to regroup, stick together and we’ll get through this.
“I don’t feel any more pressure than I did when I took the job right at the start. The pressure is to win games for Rangers. In Europe we haven’t done that, there’s no getting away from it so there is pressure to win games.
“I’m disappointed more than anything, that’s my overriding feeling at this moment in time.
“I certainly would not want to be disrespectful and say they’re not a great side. They were good enough to beat us over the two games so good luck to them, you wish them well in the tournament.
“But, if you’re asking me were they a side I felt we should’ve beaten, yes.
And at Rangers’ rivals Celtic, Neil Lennon spoke about the Parkhead side’s departure at the hands of FC Sion:
“The result is very damaging obviously, but I saw a lot of good things from the team. I can’t fault the players, they were brilliant. They played for 87 minutes with 10 men and played excellently.”
“It was a pretty poor start to say the least. But once we got the goal I thought we were going to do it. But for a bit of luck we could have got the result we were looking for.”
“I think it is fair to say we should have beaten Sion, but we didn’t do ourselves justice in the first game. We got off to a horrendous start tonight, but I think after that you saw the real Celtic team, and I hope they take some crumb of comfort from the spirit they showed and the quality of the football.”
What are your thoughts – the fans – on the comments made by the managers?
Sources: BBC Football | Telegraph | Daily Record | Scottish Sun