Despite their side qualifying for the UEFA Champions League round of 16 as one of only two teams with a 100% record in the group stage, Club Atlético de Madrid midfielders Raúl García and Óliver Torres told UEFA.com they would continue to work hard to maintain the respect of the footballing world.
The Spanish club strolled through with a 4-0 home defeat of FK Austria Wien, and Roman Kienast and Heinz Lindner called for improvements as the tournament debutants – still seeking their first goal in Group G – approach a decisive matchday five meeting with FC Porto.
Raúl García, Atlético midfielder
I'm happy, above all, with our having qualified. It was our objective from the start and the fact we have progressed with two games to spare means we should be delighted. I'm also content on a personal level. It's true that every player wants to play as much as possible and to the best of their ability. The closer to the opposition area I play, the more comfortable I feel. As I always say, however, the coach is the one who decides and whatever the position I will look to bring something. I try to do well whenever picked.
Things are working out well for us this season – we are playing at a high level which is helping us to do what we are doing. We will now be focusing on our Liga games. Prestige is not just something that is given to you, you have to work hard to earn it. We are enjoying a good moment where everyone is giving us respect for what we are doing. We have to continue in this manner.
Óliver Torres, Atlético midfielder
I think taking things on a game-by-game basis is giving us strength, more so than looking at future objectives. We only see the present. Qualifying as we have makes us very happy. We weren't expecting to advance so soon. We've been going step by step and winning all our matches in the group and that's the attitude we want to keep. We will look to win our next match, even if we have already qualified. We always want to give our maximum.
The entire team is working hard. I may not be one of those players who play a lot but I always look to take advantage when I do, just like the rest of my team-mates. We don't want to think about the future because when you do that, things can work out badly.
Roman Kienast, Austria forward
In the first ten minutes we were OK but after making a mistake we went behind. Then, when they added a second, we had no chance. We were chasing the ball for almost 90 minutes and it was difficult for us.
It's not every year you play in the Champions League or in stadiums like this. For us it's a great experience and we are learning. We have two games left and we will at least look to score [our first goal in the group stage]. We will have to be 100% focused in our remaining games. We will look to keep going. Atlético are a fantastic team – one of many in this season's tournament. It will be tough but I think they can go far.
Heinz Lindner, Austria goalkeeepr
Before the game we said we would try to play in a very compact manner. We tried to prevent Atlético having shots at our goal early on, like they did in the first match between us. It happened again that they scored early, however, and we lost composure a little from that point. We are just happy we didn't lose by a bigger margin.
I am pleased with my own performance but that is a minor detail on a night like this. The big thing is that we lost two games against Atlético by an aggregate score of 7-0. Atlético are very good technically. They play very fast and direct football. For us it was very difficult to enter into the fight with them playing at such a high tempo.
My ambitions now are to see us scoring – we have no goals up to this point. We have to win our next fixture against FC Porto. We want to qualify for the UEFA Europa League but we will need to be better in the coming games to achieve that.
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