Group C rivals share sunny outlook

RSC Anderlecht coach John van den Brom "would have signed up" for Group C, a view shared by Paris Saint-Germain FC's Marco Verratti of a section including SL Benfica and Olympiacos FC.

Marco Verratti helped PSG reach the quarter-finals of last season's UEFA Champions League
Marco Verratti helped PSG reach the quarter-finals of last season's UEFA Champions League ©AFP

Lourenço Coelho, SL Benfica director
It is a tight group with strong teams. Our goal is to go through the group stage and I think we can do it. We've had some good European campaigns in previous seasons and we hope we can do the same this year. PSG have been investing strongly and are very hard opponents but we will face the other teams with the same focus.

Marco Verratti, PSG midfielder
This is a positive draw because we avoided the big teams. But we'll need to be cautious. Benfica are a team that with tonnes of experience. They are used to playing in the Champions League. Olympiacos are also regular league winners in Greece. We expect a tough game out there. I also know Anderlecht because I've seen them playing against AC Milan, some time ago. This will not be easy, but somehow there is never an easy game in the Champions League. I think it's a good draw, but we need to win these games to look good on the European stage.

Míchel, Olympiacos coach
We are neither enthusiastic about the draw, nor will it be an easy task to progress from this group. We'll keep our feet firmly on the ground. It's not a bad draw for us. We are optimistic that we can overcome the difficulties we'll face. We managed to avoid clubs from the Spanish, English, German and Italian leagues, which is good. This group is rather even. We trust in our team and our players. Recently we faced Anderlecht in a friendly [winning 1-0] and we showed that we are on the same level.

John van den Brom, Anderlecht coach
In sporting terms the draw could have been worse for us. I would have signed up for this draw before it happened. Before the draw I was eager to draw Benfica as you always look at the team against whom you think you have the most chances. And in early August we played a friendly in Greece against Olympiacos. That was an important match, but now that becomes even more important. Against that team we stand a chance. PSG are in a different category. They are a star team. It is great for the players to be able to play against them.

Our goal is to progress. Just participating in the Champions League is too easy. We have to create opportunities against all three opponents. The draw is already positive, now we have to get a better picture about the other teams, and then we can say what will be possible for us. But I already dare to state that we will get some points. The experience from last year will help us and together with the talent we have available we'll try to get more then we did then.