"It's great to have made it this far, but we won't stop here," promised Farid Benstiti after Paris Saint-Germain booked a UEFA Women's Champions League final place.
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Paris Saint Germain did not make it easy on themselves, but coach Farid Benstiti was prepared to be forgiving after his side withstood late pressure from holders VfL Wolfsburg to make it to the UEFA Women's Champions League final, where they will take on 1. FFC Frankfurt in Berlin on 14 May.
The former Olympique Lyonnais midfielder endured a trying closing phase as his side – 2-0 up from the first leg – shipped two goals in quick succession after taking the lead in Paris. "We should have handled our 1-0 lead better, especially since we were 2-0 up from the first leg," Benstiti said.
"Can you believe it? That's football: [Wolfsburg] scored twice in the space of a few minutes, and then anything could have happened. We have to put this match behind us. We won't forget it, and it adds to our experience, but it will only be something historic if we win this final."
Three-time winners Frankfurt represent daunting opponents, but having ended Wolfsburg's hopes of a third successive UEFA Women's Champions League triumph, Benstiti reckons his side have nothing to fear. "You don't go into a final just to take part – you put everything into it to win.
"We'll have to find a way and be very professional, but we will enjoy the occasion. Frankfurt have won the competition three times, while we're debutants at this stage. It's great to have made it this far, but we won't stop here."
Benstiti knows from bitter experience that finals can be cruel; he was in charge of Lyon as they reached the inaugural UEFA Women's Champions League decider in 2009/10. After 120 goalless minutes against 1. FFC Turbine Potsdam, his side's fortune ran out in the resulting shoot-out.
"I came very close to winning the competition with Lyon," he recalled. "We were even three penalties up. We should have won it, but it slipped away from us, and then Lyon won it twice in a row [after I had left]. So I don't just want to take part – I want to win it. I have the feeling that my girls can score in this final and hold on to a lead."
For Woflsburg meanwhile, there was a clear sense of an opportunity missed. "I regret the first leg; that really hurt us," said coach Ralf Kellermann. "I and the entire team are very disappointed, because, especially in the second half, we showed our qualities. In the end we just missed out on the final; we played well and we squandered our chance already in the first leg. Right now, it just hurts not to be going to Berlin."
The outgoing holders still have plenty to play for this season, however. "We have the German Cup final ahead of us on 1 May and on 10 May the final for the German championship," Kellermann added. "If we win, we will be German champions for the third time in a row; that's our goal. Should we lose, we could finish third which means that we would not be playing in the Champions League next term. So those will be very exciting weeks and I hope we will be on top of our game."