FC Internazionale Milano are in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 and SV Werder Bremen are out of European competition altogether, but it is the Bundesliga side who enjoyed the more positive ending to the group stage. Bremen defeated the holders 3-0 – an invaluable fillip for their ailing league form according to Thomas Schaaf – to leave Nerazzurri coach Rafael Benítez citing a much-changed lineup, a lengthy injury list and upcoming distractions for his side's failure to pip Tottenham Hotspur FC to top spot in Group A.
Thomas Schaaf, Bremen coach
This win was worth a lot, as we did what we intended to do. There were three goals to celebrate and we delivered; we wanted to bid farewell with a good performance, we wanted to play good football and wanted to gain self-confidence. There were some good signs today – it was important for every player to notice things are going forward. We want to continue playing like we did today.
I especially liked the fact that we kept attacking in the second half. I don't want to single out any player; all of them tried today. We scored some beautiful goals, so it is good that so many players played a part. We now have two matches left [this year] to prove ourselves. It is good that we now travel to the league leaders [Borussia Dortmund] feeling confident, but Dortmund will definitely ask more of us than Inter did today.
Rafael Benítez, Inter coach
On the eve of the game we knew we had to win and hope for a bad result for Tottenham. We were fully aware that it was difficult to finish first in the group – we took the chance to give a few young players an important experience. I'm very satisfied with their performance, they proved to be mature enough to play at this level. The FIFA Club World Cup is an important objective, so it's normal that some players were already thinking about that.
The crucial game for us was the one against Twente two weeks ago when we booked our place in the knockout stage. Losing 1-0, 2-0 or 3-0 today made no difference. We have several players on the sidelines right now and we wanted to avoid other injuries. We are fully convinced that our season will soon reach a turning point and everything will improve. When quality players like Júlio César, [Diego] Milito, Maicon and many others return, it's going to be a completely different story.
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