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Sir Alex outlines importance of opening victory

After a group stage exit last season, Manchester United FC manager Sir Alex Ferguson outlined the importance of an opening win, while Fatih Terim praised Galatasaray AŞ's spirit.

Sir Alex outlines importance of opening victory
Sir Alex outlines importance of opening victory ©UEFA.com

Sir Alex Ferguson, Manchester United manager
We expected a tough game. In the first half we gave the ball away too often and they counterattacked really well. In the second half, though, we were much more solid at the back and all the chances fell to us. We could have scored four or five in the second half. It was a good opening game, they were very confident in their possession, but all the good European teams are like that. You need to be confident that when you get possession you make it count. Missing the chances we did in the second half, we kept ourselves on the edge.

Three points in the opening game is very important, especially when you look at what happened to us last season. Last season we got a draw at Benfica and then a draw at home, so it is a bonus that we got the win. With Cluj beating Braga it means an interesting next match [in Romania].

Fatih Terim, Galatasaray coach
We are sad about the defeat. When you look at the result, it is not positive, but it made us happy to see the 'Galatasaray spirit' on the pitch. The players were nervous at the beginning but we played well after the goal until half-time. We knew we needed to go beyond our usual Turkish Super League level in terms of performance. Not only could we have endured a bigger defeat, but we could have scored the equaliser and gone even further. We were denied by the woodwork on three occasions.

There is still room for improvement. Our players showed resistance and in their physical effort they went beyond Turkish Super League level. They fought until the final whistle. It is good to see our team go head-to-head with Manchester United. We would have liked to have given Turkey a nice result but that did not happen. We will continue working.

Some of our players were obviously overexcited because of their Champions League debuts. We do not like losing, regardless of the opponent and venue. My players will learn lessons from this defeat. I believe Umut Bulut's injury is not that serious but of course medical tests will reveal his condition.