FC Lokomotiv Moskva coach Yuri Semin refused to be downbeat and insisted "we played very good football" after watching his side throw away the lead to lose 2-1 against BV Borussia Dortmund in UEFA Champions League Group C.
'Only the beginning'
Sergey Ignashevich gave Lokomotiv a deserved lead in Moscow only for goals from Torsten Frings and Jan Koller to leave the Russian champions empty-handed. Although the Lokomotiv coach stressed it was "only the beginning of the tournament", with Real Madrid CF and AC Milan completing their four-team group, Lokomotiv will have to sharpen up their finishing if their involvement in the competition is to continue beyond the second group stage.
Semin cited a failure to take their chances and the injury to midfield player Vladimir Maminov - substitued before the break after a clash of heads with Koller - as key factors. "The match was difficult," he said. "Both teams played well and we had a lot of chances – but didn't take them. The ball was under our control but the second half was not very good for us because of the injury to our key player Vladimir Maminov."
Dortmund coach Matthias Sammer was upbeat after the game, and with good reason after his side claimed three precious away points. He said: "I'm satisfied with the result because it was a very difficult match – Lokomotiv are a very strong team. We knew it would be difficult because they have just been crowned Russian champions and their spirits were high. We played better football so we deserved the result."
All in all, it was a job well done by Dortmund, who ground out the victory on a muddy pitch in low temperatures, thanks largely to the brilliance of Tomáš Rosický. Sammer added: "The weather suited Lokomotiv but my players were strong - they did their job very well."
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