"We're in a good position," SL Benfica's André Gomes told UEFA.com after a 3-1 win over Newcastle United FC, who will look to whip up a storm in the St James' Park rematch.
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SL Benfica's teenage midfielder André Gomes praised his side's response to Newcastle United FC's early domination, while team-mate Melgarejo stressed the importance of staying focused after their 3-1 UEFA Europa League quarter-final first-leg win. The visitors' Yohan Cabaye and Steven Taylor both rued missed chances but told UEFA.com the St James' Park crowd will have an influence on the fate of this tie next Thursday.
André Gomes, Benfica midfielder
We had to get used to Newcastle's way of playing – a more aggressive style than ours – and I think we all did well to do that after their goal. We responded well and we're in a good position now. We're going to do everything we can to get through to the next round, and we've given ourselves a good chance with those three goals. The best way to play the game is always our own way, and we will go and try to win it. We're going to think about it like that.
Melgarejo, Benfica defender
We've recorded a very important victory, but there's still a return game to go so it's important to stay in the right frame of mind. We've got a week between now and the second game so we need to discuss it with the coach, to figure out how we're going to play over there. [Newcastle] are a very quick team in attack, but we have our strengths too – we have our way of playing that we're going to take there. We're in good shape.
Yohan Cabaye, Newcastle midfielder
It's a big disappointment. We started very well – we were leading 1-0 and we had the chances to score the second goal, which unfortunately we didn't take. We ended up giving goals to our opponents, but the fact we could make chances against such good opposition gives us some hope for the return match. In front of our supporters, I'm sure we'll have chances. Now it's up to us to control the match well and play the 90 minutes right to the end to try and qualify. I'm sure the stadium will be full. We already had so many supporters here this evening and that's huge for us. It'll be a whole different atmosphere [at home] and I know we can count on our fans.
Steven Taylor, Newcastle defender
It was always going to be a tough game against one of the top teams in Europe and you can't afford to give them the chances that we did. We're disappointed with the goals [we conceded] but they've got to come to St James' Park, which is going to difficult for them and hopefully we can put the pressure on. I thought in the second half we caused them a lot of problems and you could see it was affecting them. There's a few weak spots in their defence and hopefully we can exploit that next week. We're just going to try and do the best we can.