Sporting Clube de Portugal coach Paulo Bento could barely contain his anger after conceding an 89th-minute equaliser which enhanced AS Roma's prospects in Group F.
The Sporting Clube de Portugal coach Paulo Bento could barely contain his anger after conceding a last-gasp equaliser which put a serious dent in their hopes of advancing from Group F, while enhancing those of AS Roma. "The score was unfair," he said, highlighting the lucky nature of a late leveller which went in off home defender Anderson Polga. Luciano Spalletti felt the visitors deserved a point, praising the "character" of his understrength team who took the lead before conceding two Liedson goals. uefa.com hears from the coaches.
Paulo Bento, Sporting coach
This result leaves a bad taste. The score was unfair because of both the time of their goal and the way it happened, from a harmless situation. I'm happy with the way we played - mentally the players were great the way they reacted to going a goal down, turning the game around against a strong and organised Roma team. We were out of luck and in a tight match that's the difference. Roma didn't do enough to deserve to score two goals and we've been penalised by this unjust result.
If we would have won we would have been close to qualification, so this draw was bad for our hopes of going through. Still we've taken a small step and we'll try to win our remaining two matches and see what happens. We had the match under control, Roma weren't creating any chances. They haven't proved in these two matches that they're better than us. We had to chances to prove it, but this last-gasp goal didn't help.
Luciano Spalletti, Roma coach
What I saw from the bench is Roma deserved a result. We played with balance but gave the initiative to Sporting who scored twice from two situations which we could have defended better. We reacted well to score. We were missing some players and my job is to support the ones who were playing. The players who came in showed character and proved that they were up to the task, and for that I have to salute them. With two games to go, having not qualified, we have to continue this way. We made some mistakes but talked at the break and improved. For me, showing character made amends for the defensive errors.