Pepe enthused about a "great display by the whole team" while Sergio Ramos insisted Real Madrid CF are not looking beyond the return leg despite the 6-1 win at FC Schalke 04.
Article top media content
After Real Madrid CF became the first club to score six goals away from home in the knockout stage of the UEFA Champions League, defenders Sergio Ramos, Pepe and Marcelo were full of praise for the Merengues' round of 16 first-leg display against FC Schalke 04.
Though Ramos would rather have come away with a clean sheet, Pepe reflected on a "great performance" from front to back, while Marcelo insisted there would be no celebrating until Madrid's place in the last eight was set in stone.
Sergio Ramos, Madrid defender
We're delighted with this result because we always want to score as many as we can. We've given ourselves a major advantage for the second leg, but we still have that game to play.
Schalke will want to present themselves in a different light at our place. They had a bad day at the office and are going to force us into another good performance in the return. They could have scored one or two at the start, but thankfully that didn't happen.
Myself and Iker [Casillas] would have preferred to keep a clean sheet but they scored, so at least there was something for the home fans to cheer. In terms of what we can achieve this season we're just taking it one game at a time, but of course we set ourselves big targets.
Pepe, Madrid defender
To be honest, I didn't think a game like that was possible at this stage of the competition, but we put on a strong display from the very start and all the goals were well worked. The lads up front did really well, but it wasn't just them – it was a great performance from the whole team. We're all physically fit, mentally strong and have the composure to win games like these. That's what makes the difference at this level.
Marcelo, Madrid defender
We're delighted with the result. Of course, it looks like we'll be going through, but we have a lot of respect for Schalke and won't be celebrating until after the second leg. We'll go into that game with the same passion and determination we showed tonight.
We went into tonight's match with the aim of scoring as many goals as possible to set ourselves up for the second leg. We played really well, but Schalke are still a very good and dangerous team with a lot of quality. We're going to have to give everything in the return leg. Even after tonight's result, we're far from satisfied.