Ruefulness prevailed at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday, with Juan Mata and David Luiz lamenting Chelsea FC's elimination as FC Nordsjælland licked the wounds of a 6-1 defeat.
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Chelsea FC could not disguise their disappointment as their UEFA Champions League defence was ended, with Juan Mata calling it a "sad day". David Luiz pointed to their first Group E game, at home to Juventus, when the Blues squandered a two-goal lead as being key to the whole campaign. For FC Nordsjælland, a fifth defeat in six outings left a bitter taste even if Joshua John had the satisfaction of scoring for the first time in the competition.
Juan Mata, Chelsea midfielder
We did what we had to do but it wasn't enough. We played really well, especially in the second half, but the sense of disappointment is deep. We wanted to get through to the next round as we are the holders of the competition, but we have to carry on and try to win the Europa League.
It wasn't a problem tonight or in the last game. We didn't do well enough in previous games; we lost points early on. In the end we got ten points and in other groups that might have been enough to get through. For us it wasn't enough because Shakhtar and Juventus are two very strong teams.
It's a sad day but we will try and win the Europa League. It's a new tournament for the club and gives us another challenge for the season.
David Luiz, Chelsea defender
There was embarrassment in the dressing room and also sadness. We won the Champions League last season and to get knocked out after the group stage is a great disappointment. This is a big club and big clubs deserve to play in big games; the best games in the world are in the Champions League.
The first game was key. We were 2-0 up against Juventus and it finished 2-2. The team did a great job tonight and played a great game but we were unlucky with the other result. Now we have to look to the future and try to win the Europa League. The manager has just told us to keep working hard because the team deserves to win games.
Joshua John, Nordsjælland striker
It was a special moment for me to score. It was my first Champions League goal and for it to come at Stamford Bridge was nice. I have only seen these players on television before so to play against them in real life was very exciting. I am enjoying it [on loan] at Nordsjælland. I am happy because I am getting to play which wasn't the case at [FC] Twente.
Maybe I'm a little bit surprised at how well I have done in this campaign. At the start you are aware it's a different level but I just tried my best and hopefully there will be more games for me in the Champions League in the future.
Everybody was quiet in the dressing room, it was a very bad defeat, and we have to see the game again and decide what went wrong. But it's been a learning process. For every player it's been a new competition. We've played some good games at home but the away games have been more difficult.
Jesper Hansen, Nordsjælland goalkeeper
Chelsea were pressurising all over the pitch and it was a difficult for us to play our normal game. We came back in the second half but then it was a disaster for us at the end of the game and it's not so much fun standing here after a 6-1 defeat.
The [early] injury to Ivan Runje meant we had to change our plans and it wasn't helpful. Whether we could have stopped the six goals if it hadn't have happened who knows. Chelsea played some good counterattacking football and are a very good team and the results in the group showed we are having troubles at this level.
The Champions League has been a good experience for us and hopefully we can come back and play in it again. We need to learn from these games and take it into the Danish league. The big difference is the speed and tempo of the Champions League games and the quality of the other teams in the group.