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'Fantastic' Lyon have Pjanić purring

Published: Thursday 11 March 2010, 9.10CET
Miralem Pjanić has his sights on a place in the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League after scoring the goal that took Olympique Lyonnais through to the last eight at Real Madrid CF's expense.
by Paul Bryan
from Madrid

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Published: Thursday 11 March 2010, 9.10CET

'Fantastic' Lyon have Pjanić purring

Miralem Pjanić has his sights on a place in the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League after scoring the goal that took Olympique Lyonnais through to the last eight at Real Madrid CF's expense.

Midfielder Miralem Pjanić said Olympique Lyonnais' new goal was to reach the last four of the UEFA Champions League after the 19-year-old's second-half strike against Real Madrid CF helped Les Gones to a place in the quarter-finals.

Trailing 1-0 on the night to Cristiano Ronaldo's sixth-minute breakthrough, Lyon looked to be on the ropes in an opening 45 minutes dominated by the hosts at the Santiago Bernabéu. However, with the tie evenly poised at 1-1, Claude Puel's men emerged for the second period in determined mood and took an aggregate lead through Pjanić's powerful effort 15 minutes from time.

"I'm very happy for myself and of course for the team. This result is very important for the club and we hope we can now qualify for the next phase," the Bosnian and Herzegovinian international told UEFA.com. "The first half was very difficult for us. Madrid are a very good team and they created good chances but we also played well and what happened in the end was fantastic for us."

The former FC Metz player is revelling in the UEFA Champions League scene, having already registered goals against Debreceni VSC – twice – and ACF Fiorentina this term. Yet he is also taking each game as it comes. "We have a very good young team with a lot of quality," he explained. "We have a big game against St-Etienne at the weekend which we must turn our attention to. After that we know it won't be easy, but our ambition is to qualify for the semi-finals."

Lyon defender Jean-Alain Boumsong could hardly keep the smile from his face when asked by UEFA.com to describe the post-match atmosphere in the visitors' dressing room. "What do you think?" the 30-year-old responded.

"We knew we had a tough game ahead of us and in the first half we saw that. We waited for the storm to pass and in the second period we were more confident that we could qualify, so we started to play our game which finally led to us scoring a goal. For us to achieve qualification for the next round in front of such a strong home crowd is fantastic."

Last updated: 27/11/12 17.58CET

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