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Vilda vindicated, Paisana's pride in Portugal

As Spain coach Ángel Vilda began highlighting improvements needed ahead of Saturday's final, a reflective José Paisana spoke of his immense pride in Portugal's fine breakthrough.

Portugal's Fátima Pinto reacts as Spain celebrate victory
Portugal's Fátima Pinto reacts as Spain celebrate victory ©Sportsfile

Spain coach Ángel Vilda was in little doubt that his side merited their place in Saturday's UEFA European Women's Under-19 Championship final, but paid tribute to "the incredible work Portugal put in". Opposite number José Paisana echoed that sentiment, and departs with his head held high after a memorable debut final tournament that could have been even better but for Raquel Pinel's 87th-minute winner.

Ángel Vilda, Spain coach
Yes, I doubted victory. Spain dominated throughout, created lots of chances but Portugal had a few of their own late on and if one had gone in it would all have been different. The girls were feeling it a little bit at the end but that's to be expected after taking the game to Portugal all evening but I didn't necessarily think it was tiredness. Spain deserved to go through having dominated for so long.

We can expect an evenly-contested final. The group game between the sides was very competitive though it could easily have ended 1-0 to Spain. We expect the final to be just as tight. We need to finish better than we did tonight, though. We're normally great at it but tonight we weren't. That is partly down to the incredible work Portugal put in, as they have all tournament.

José Paisana, Portugal coach
We'd like to congratulate Spain on their victory. Obviously we're all very sad. Our work, commitment and organisation deserved more. We demonstrated our ability and quality. I'm proud of my players. They're been amazing and have done all we've asked of them at the very minimum. We were very close to reaching our goal.

We had a strategy for the match, to put Spain under pressure throughout and show what we can do from the first minute to last. We felt that if we kept it tight then chances would come as the players tired. As a team we've been amazing and our goalkeeper is a quality element to it as she showed today – she was probably the best player out there.

The squad are young and have a real future. We always said that we wanted to show our quality every time we played. We did and were able to get to the semi-finals where we came up against a team full of quality and experience. I hope this, our first final tournament, will help Portuguese women's football develop.

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