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Paisana delighted and Erdem ambitious

Published: Monday 9 July 2012, 11.40CET
José Paisana paid tribute to his players after Portugal finished second in Group A, while Taygun Erdem sounded a positive note about the rise of women's football in Turkey.
Paisana delighted and Erdem ambitious
Denmark midfielder Julie Jensen vies wtih Tatiana Pinto of Portugal ©Sportsfile
Published: Monday 9 July 2012, 11.40CET

Paisana delighted and Erdem ambitious

José Paisana paid tribute to his players after Portugal finished second in Group A, while Taygun Erdem sounded a positive note about the rise of women's football in Turkey.

José Paisana secretly harboured ambitions of a semi-final berth and declared himself "very proud" after Portugal repaid his faith. Despite their immaculate Group A campaign, Denmark coach Søren Randa-Boldt is striving for more goals, while Romania's Mirel Albon tipped Alexandra Lunca and Ştefania Vătafufor for big things after his side's 1-1 draw with hosts Turkey resulted in mixed emotions.

We always had big ambitions and with a lot of commitment we were able to achieve it
José Paisana
We know Sweden very well, they have a very good team. They are still my favourites to win the tournament
Søren Randa-Boldt
I was worried that my girls would struggle against the level of football in the finals but they showed they can cope with it
Mirel Albon
This tournament was a major milestone for us. I expect a significant interest in women's football after this
Taygun Erdem

PORTUGAL 0-1 DENMARK
José Paisana, Portugal coach
First of all I want to congratulate all the players, my staff and Denmark on their victory. We weren't able to play as well as we wanted but we believed in ourselves and from three matches we have finished runners-up. We are very happy and I think we deserved it. I am very proud of all the players, we have achieved our goals because deep down we targeted a semi-final place even if we didn't say so.

We always had big ambitions and with a lot of commitment we were able to achieve it. We are getting closer to the final and it keeps getting harder and harder with each match. Spain are very powerful and an extremely good team but we have to continue to work and prepare as best we can. We want to recover physically first so we are ready for the semi-finals.

Søren Randa-Boldt, Denmark coach
We wanted to keep the ball and have good possession and I feel we did that. We had enough opportunities to score more goals. They played well and pressurised us but I think we were the better team. We went for the victory but we made some changes towards the end to ensure the players are fresh for the semi-finals.

We understood they were a little nervous so we wanted to start quickly. Camilla [Andersen] was injured before the tournament and now she is back and scored tonight. She is a dangerous player. We know Sweden very well, they have a very good team. They are still my favourites to win the tournament but we will look forward to it.

ROMANIA 1-1 TURKEY
Mirel Albon, Romania coach
I think our girls played very well tonight. We had a lot of opportunities to score and dominated possession. We would have liked to win but this is football. It's more important for the players to gain experience at this age. Alexandra Lunca and Ştefania Vătafu, in particular, have great potential. Lunca was very nervous during the game and failed to score but I am sure she'll score many goals for Romania in the future. She can even be one of the best forwards in Europe.

Vătafu is the leader of our team. She will captain the senior team in the future. We are sad because we are leaving but we are happy because we have really enjoyed our time here. I was worried that my girls would struggle against the level of football in the finals but they showed they can cope with it. It was a very good experience for them.

Taygun Erdem, Turkey coach
We started badly and failed to gain the initiative. Romania were a team that we knew very well and we took them seriously. We prepared to deny their key players but we struggled with Alexandra Lunca and Ştefania Vătafu. We conceded the goal due to a defensive error which also occurred against Denmark. Lessons will be learnt. We were too eager at times and this effected our concentration especially in and around the box. We need to work more on attacking and defending principles.

In the future, we'll come through qualifying, which will improve us as a team. This tournament was a major milestone for us. I expect a significant interest in women's football after this. Girls will be knocking on the door of sports clubs if they can play football. I congratulate my players from the heart. They fought ambitiously until the last minute and they never gave up.

Last updated: 09/07/12 12.28CET

http://www.uefa.com/womensunder19/news/newsid=1839769.html#paisana+delighted+erdem+ambitious

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