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Club Atlético de Madrid's two-goal hero Adrián López was thrilled with both his and the team's effort on a night when they put four past Serie A's second-placed side to claim top spot in UEFA Europa League Group I. Udinese Calcio defender Joel Ekstrand insisted the Zebrette would not lose belief after their setback in the Spanish capital.
Adrián López, Atlético forward
We are very happy. We knew tonight was going to be exceptionally important and that we could take a huge step forward in the group with the right result. We have managed to do that and the entire squad is exceptionally satisfied. It pleases me to know that I have now scored four times in my last two games and that my goals are helping the team.
Everyone here who takes to the field has to give their utmost to the cause. We've started a run with consecutive victories and we can't stop now. We must continue along this path.
Luis Perea, Atlético defender
We are thrilled as we knew the importance of this game and the difficulties it presented us. Once again, our team has stood up to the challenge by starting the match very strongly and controlling the rhythm. A big team like ours feeds off good results and thankfully tonight we've won again. Every aspect of the team functioned well.
I think that in almost every encounter we've played this season we've done everything to win but unfortunately it seems the ball didn't want to go in for us. With these latest games against Real Zaragoza and now Udinese it seems our luck in front of goal has changed. The standings are still quite close and although we've taken a big step we still haven't achieved anything. We must look to seal our passage through in the next two games.
Francesco Guidolin, Udinese coach
We are very disappointed not to have put on a good show in front of so many traveling supporters. There are two games left and they will decide our fate in terms of qualification. We have a very young team and when you have that you obviously miss the experience factor. We were too timid in our approach and we paid the price for that. We made too many mistakes in the first half and Atlético punished us. We will try to forget this bad game and to turn the page thinking about our next league game against Siena at the weekend.
Joel Ekstrand, Udinese defender
It was very difficult for us tonight. We had a tough start, and while that gave Atlético confidence it made us a little more nervous, which made it difficult to reach our usual standard and to play our own game. It's hard to put my finger on what the difference was between this game and that of two weeks ago but I will say home advantage is important.
Atlético are a technical team and a very skilful one. They keep possession well and attack at the right times while they have some excellent players like Falcao and many others. I don't think the result will affect our confidence. Of course we are not happy and many players are angry, but as a professional footballer you have to let go the next day and start training for the next match.
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