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Vermeer heroics leave Lyon 'needing miracle'

AFC Ajax captain Jan Vertonghen praised an "amazing" display from Kenneth Vermeer which left the Dutch club strongly placed and Olympique Lyonnais needing a miracle.

Vermeer heroics leave Lyon 'needing miracle'
Vermeer heroics leave Lyon 'needing miracle' ©UEFA.com

AFC Ajax captain Jan Vertonghen hailed an "amazing" performance from Kenneth Vermeer after the visiting goalkeeper kept Olympique Lyonnais at bay in a frantic finale. According to Kim Källström, the Ligue 1 club now need "a miracle" after Tuesday's goalless draw left them three points adrift of second-placed Ajax – whose goal difference is seven better than that of Lyon – with one game to play in Group D.

Jan Vertonghen, Ajax defender
We played a good game. We started well and it's a pity we didn't convert any of our chances. Even a 1-1 draw would have taken us through but at the same time our goalkeeper [Vermeer] made some good saves at the end so we are happy with 0-0. He did amazingly well with the shots from [Michel] Bastos and [Alexandre] Lacazette. He was amazing. We tired in the last ten minutes because we had given everything, and Lyon have good players who could have decided the game at the death so we had to be careful. We know that if we get a draw against Real Madrid we'll be through. We know they're a great team as last year we lost 4-0 at home. They are maybe the best team in the world right now.

Eyong Enoh, Ajax midfielder
This is a great result for us. Getting a draw in Lyon despite the problems we have right now with injuries is really good. We played as a team and everyone fought together. That's why we held on. We could have scored one or two but Lyon had chances too, especially at the end. It was a balanced game. Now we're in a strong position, but I'm not taking anything for granted. If we play that well again in the next match then we will go through. This kind of performance gives us confidence.

Kim Källström, Lyon midfielder
It's a real disappointment. We played a decent game and created chances. They had opportunities too but we felt like we finished stronger. We pushed and pushed and came close, but their goalkeeper made some really good saves. Life goes on. We still have a chance to go through, although it is nearly impossible and we need a miracle but we haven't given up. We'll try to get a result in Zagreb and hope Real Madrid beat Ajax. We know Madrid are capable of scoring lots of goals so we are not dead yet. If it doesn't work out for us, we'll go into the Europa League and try to do well there.

Bafétimbi Gomis, Lyon forward
People shouldn't underestimate this Ajax team. They're a very good side that play good football and have a lot of strengths. We tried to put them under pressure in the second half but unfortunately we couldn't get the goal. We need to draw positives from the performance and not forget that we still have a chance of qualifying. Our chances aren't as good as they were, but we're still in the competition. The key thing is to keep our heads up and get back to winning ways against Auxerre on Sunday.