Ivan Perišić found "the perfect moment for my first Champions League goal" after his late volley gave Borussia Dortmund a 1-1 draw with Arsenal FC, whose players had mixed feelings.
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Ivan Perišić was happy to revel in "the perfect moment" of his late left-foot volley after he came off the bench to earn Borussia Dortmund a deserved 1-1 draw at home to Group F rivals Arsenal FC. Gunners goalkeeper Wojciech Szczęsny doubted the Croatian international would ever score another goal like it, yet was full of praise for his side's defensive display as they battled to build on Robin van Persie's 42nd-minute opener.
Ivan Perišić, Dortmund midfielder
I play the same way with my right foot; I always try to shoot like this. Sometimes it's a goal, sometimes the ball flies into the stands, but this ended up being the perfect moment for my first goal in the Champions League. Every player wants to play in the first team, but I joined the Bundesliga champions and it's not easy to get a chance in the first team straight away. I'll do my best to get into the team, though, and I think if I show more of what I showed tonight, it won't be a problem for me.
Mats Hummels, Dortmund defender
It was great fun. I think we can be satisfied because it could have been worse. Even though we didn't win the match, we were the better team for at least 85 minutes and we could have scored the first goal before Arsenal did. We didn't, though, and so after an individual mistake – which we've had a few too many of recently – we fell behind. After that, we were left fighting for an equaliser for a long time until Ivan scored that extraordinary goal. For many of us, this was our first Champions League match and an unforgettable evening.
Sebastian Kehl, Dortmund midfielder
If you're behind for as long as we were, you have to be satisfied with one point at the end. We were more than equal to Arsenal today and that gives me hope for the coming matches. I think that we can be successful in our coming matches with our young and fresh approach to the game – just as we showed last year. For me personally, I was really happy to play form the start. I'd hoped it would go better, what with my mistake, but things like this can happen. After a long injury break, I was happy to be back in the Champions League.
Wojciech Szczęsny, Arsenal goalkeeper
After a goal like that, we'll take a point. Credit to Dortmund: they played well in the second half and probably deserved a goal. For 90 minutes, we defended really, really well. Even from the free-kick they scored from, we defended really well and he [Perišić] will probably never score another one like that. If you're going to concede, that's the way you want to concede. To get a point away from home, in Dortmund – probably one of our toughest fixtures – gives us a confidence boost. I think we showed a lot of people what we're made of. It was one of the best atmospheres I've experienced in my career, but this is the kind of game you like to play in.
Laurent Koscielny, Arsenal defender
We played a great game defensively and it's a shame we conceded two minutes from the end, but we came up against a very good Dortmund team which played well in possession. We got stronger as the game went on and we didn't lose, which was the most important thing. We leave with a point, which I think is the fairest result. You're always disappointed to concede so close to the end, especially from a set piece or a second ball, and we know that's one of our weak points at the moment. Robin is a great striker, but we already knew that. Everyone knows it. He doesn't need five chances to score. We've had some difficult moments but things look a bit brighter. I hope our season is up and running now and that we can continue like this.
Per Mertesacker, Arsenal defender
I've played in Dortmund several times in my life but always with the Germany team. Today, I came back with Arsenal and it was a really different feel. I think we had quite a lot of luck today. Everyone could see that Dortmund are a team that's used to playing together and they have good attacking players who are very mobile. We have many players who've come into the side in the last few weeks, so we'll have to work on our understanding. Even though it was a late equaliser, we're very satisfied.