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Mature Roma thrill Spalletti

Luciano Spalletti was full of praise for his AS Roma side while Gérard Houllier admitted his Olympique Lyonnais team were second best and deserved to lose.

AS Roma's progress into the quarter-finals of the UEFA Champions League, after a 2-0 away and aggregate victory in their first knockout round meeting with Olympique Lyonnais, left coach Luciano Spalletti praising the effort of his team in all areas while his opposite number, Gérard Houllier, also felt the Italian side deserved to go through.

Gérard Houllier, Lyon coach
Roma were the better side tonight. We made two defensive errors in the first half and they took their chances. I think the second goal was the end for us - it would have been difficult at 1-0 but at 2-0 it was nearly impossible. We were not good enough offensively or collectively and at this level you must take the game to your opponents and attack until you score. The problem was that Roma were not only good defensively but also attacked quickly. But I'm a sportsman and they were better than us tonight. They are a brilliant team and I can't have any regrets.

Luciano Spalletti, Roma coach
We showed a great maturity - the players were perfect, in winning possession, going forward and being creative offensively. It was not only the defence that were good, against a team like Lyon the whole team must be on top of their game. Not only has my own work over the last two years been shown tonight, but it's also shown the work of the whole team over this time. We didn't pay attention to their aggressive tactics, we stayed calm and organised.