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It always seemed destined that a pair of dual UEFA Europa League winners in FC Porto and Sevilla FC would be hard to separate – and so it has proved so far.
The 2011 champions' 1-0 victory at the Estádio do Dragão sets up a tense quarter-final second leg in southern Spain next week, with match winner Eliaquim Mangala believing Porto's clean sheet could prove crucial. His team-mate Danilo admitted their side will miss suspended pair Fernando and Jackson Martínez, but trusts in coach Luís Castro to find a solution, while Sevilla's Daniel Carriço still thinks his team have "every chance" of going through.
Eliaquim Mangala, Porto defender
The most important thing was to win, and we succeeded in our aim of not conceding a goal. It's good for our approach to the second leg, even if we know it's not going to be easy over there. It's a good result. We could have scored more goals but unfortunately they didn't go in. But we're going to continue to play our game over there, to play in an intelligent way in order to qualify for the semi-final.
[Fernando and Jackson missing the second game?] We know Porto aren't just two players. They're two players of real quality, but we have a very strong group and I know we're going to make up for their absence.
[Why am I scoring goals in the UEFA Europa League?] I don't know! I go up for the dead-ball situations and it's working out at the moment with three goals now, but the most important thing is that it's helping the team.
Danilo, Porto defender
The important thing was not to concede any goals. Losing goals at home in this competition makes life a lot more complicated. We had opportunities to extend the margin – we didn't manage to but we won, so we're in a strong position to go through to the next round. It's always important to win, especially playing well like this. It's good for all of us and the team can be happy with themselves. I hope we can rest up and get ready again to pursue our objectives.
[Fernando and Jackson?] Any team would miss them, but we have a strong squad and we have the players to replace them. I'm sure the coach will cover it in the best way possible so we can go through.
Daniel Carriço, Sevilla defender
We knew that it would be difficult coming here. Porto aren't at their best in the league but it's always tough to play here at the Dragão. We have players who are very good on the counterattack, but they managed to choke us in the first half. We weren't very lucky in the first half; we didn't have much of the ball and struggled to create opportunities.
We improved a lot in the second half. We had our chances but didn't manage to score. Porto have a slender advantage but I think it's possible to come back in our own stadium. We expect a slightly more defensive Porto, as they have the edge, but we have every chance of turning the tie in our favour.
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