Athletic near target, Shakhtar regret misses

"We have got closer to our goal," said Mikel San José after securing Athletic Club's 1-0 win at an FC Shakhtar Donetsk side who went through before kick-off.

Luiz Adriano challenges Mikel San José
Luiz Adriano challenges Mikel San José ©AFP/Getty Images

Athletic move up to third in Group H with a 1-0 win at Shakhtar to coach's relief
Match winner Mikel San José focused on earning UEFA Europa League berth
Shakhtar were through before kick-off and admit they "relaxed a bit"
Next games: Athletic v BATE, Porto v Shakhtar (10 December)

Ernesto Valverde, Athletic coach
It wasn't the best of performances but we achieved our goal. We won despite the fact that Shakhtar had some opportunities. We were under huge pressure but it's the Champions League and you are always under pressure.

There is no secret [in being the only team in the group not to concede against Shakhtar]. I'd have preferred to concede a few goals to Shakhtar but won more points in the group. Now we have a very important final game against BATE. I know a draw would be enough to get a Europa League place but we will play for a win.

Mikel San José, Athletic defender
I'm really happy with my winner and three points for the team. We knew it would be a very hard game. It was chilly but we it's not the first time we've played at such a temperature. Our next game with BATE will be decisive and we'll give everything to win and get a Europa League berth. We have got closer to our goal and don't want to miss this chance. We must win the last match.

Mircea Lucescu, Shakhtar coach
My congratulations to Athletic. I guess my players were a bit relaxed after the result of the BATE match [FC Porto's 3-0 win in the early game that meant Shakhtar were through], and Athletic had more motivation. They did a large amount of work on the pitch forcing us to play many long balls. They also showed great transition from attack to defence. The pitch was not perfect tonight which didn't allow our fast players to show all their capacities.

We made an error at a set piece, and in general the defeat was a result of our mistakes rather than Athletic's efforts. Their tactics were not a surprise for us; at this level, teams don't change game models from match to match. It could be completely different result if we didn't miss our opportunities. For example, if Alex Teixeira have scored a one-on-one situation early in the first half Athletic would have had to open up and the final result could have been 3-0.

We have the last group match in Porto ahead with the result of it being not so important. But it's still the Champions League and we respect this tournament. I'm not thinking of playing there with reserves – those who are in better conditions will play in Portugal. We'll try to play there as Athletic played tonight – with maximum focus and commitment.

Luiz Adriano, Shakhtar forward
I'd like to congratulate both teams who played very good football. We fought until the last minute but, unfortunately, were not able to get an equaliser. I think we were a bit unlucky. I wasn't focused on Ronaldo's record [of nine group stage goals which Luiz Adriano shares] because it's my team's success that is important for me rather than personal achievements. We had only one goal today which was to win.

The next game against Porto will not be important for the standings but we will play for a win anyway. I'm sure the whole team will give everything for a victory.

Taras Stepanenko, Shakhtar midfielder
We knew Athletic were good at set pieces but made a mistake from one. I guess a draw would have been a fair result as both teams were good. We wanted to get a positive result and cheer our fans as this was the last Champions League match this year for them. It's a pity it ended with a defeat.

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