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Rochinha buoyant as Madrid rue early blows

"Everything is possible," said SL Benfica midfielder Rochinha after the Portuguese side's 4-0 semi-final success over UEFA Youth League rivals Real Madrid CF in Nyon.

Rochinha tucks away Benfica's fourth goal from the penalty spot
Rochinha tucks away Benfica's fourth goal from the penalty spot ©Getty Images

"Everything is possible" for SL Benfica according to their midfielder Rochinha as he reflected on the Portuguese side's 4-0 semi-final success over UEFA Youth League rivals Real Madrid CF.

Rochinha, scorer of the fourth Benfica goal, admitted that scoring three early goals was beyond their wildest dreams and thanked the spectators who turned out in a significant number at the Stade Colovray to support João Tralhão's team.

As for the vanquished Madrid coach Luís Ramos, he said the 14th-minute sending-off of Jaime Sánchez was the turning point but applauded his players for battling on and hopes today's sobering defeat will have provided a useful lesson.

Rochinha, Benfica midfielder
We started the match very confident that we could reach the final. We never thought we would be 3-0 up after 17 minutes, but it was obviously very good for us. We just had to manage the match and they had also lost one player so everything became a bit easier for us. Now we have to continue to believe that everything is possible. The key to this victory was always believing and being united. That has been the main thing for this team, not just in this match but in all the matches so far. We have to continue to believe.

Benfica are a very big institution and today you could see that here: half the people here were Portuguese and they were all supporting us. It showed once again that Benfica is the biggest club in Portugal, and one of the biggest in the world. And to beat Real Madrid makes us all very satisfied – Madrid have a very good team but we were able to beat them 4-0. After this match of course we will be very confident, but we won't think the match will be like this, it will be very difficult.

It's great that the stadium here was full [and] we are all very proud and confident to now face the next match. [The support helps] a lot, especially if they are our fans, like today: it was completely full of Benfica fans and I think that was also a factor in our victory today.

Luís Ramis, Real Madrid coach
The [early goals] were very negative for us, but I have to insist that the sending-off, and playing with one man less, was the turning point for us to try to get back into the match and actually play this semi-final. We managed to reach the last four playing some good football, but today we weren't able to show it.

We are very happy and satisfied with what the team has done, though, and how they responded to all the problems and difficulties which came up during this match. If you wear the Real Madrid shirt, then you always believe. It has to be seen in your eyes that you really want it. They understood that completely, and showed it on the pitch, and in the second half we played more long balls, trying to not let them cause us too many difficulties in defence when we lost the ball. We managed to do that, but couldn't manage to score a goal. But the lads gave everything they had and I take off my hat to them – they have showed great character and great pride and a lot of fighting spirit.

This competition is fantastic for the players and for us coaches. We have had the chance to experience the group stage and face big teams who have all demanded a lot from us. There was so much different play and playing systems and styles. We are among the best four and that has been an important step for our lads. I think it is also very important for them to experience times which aren't so positive and not only successful ones. Today we had to experience the negative side of it, but you learn from that, and I am sure the players learned their lesson and that helps them to develop further.

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