first team / Sparta Prague – OL

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Published on the 22 November 2012 à 21:00 by T.B

The OL players and president spoke to OLTV after their Europa League draw in Prague...

Jean-Michel Aulas:
"I'm very satisfied, both because of the fact that we've qualified in top spot, and because we did so with so many players from our youth academy in the team. I tip my hat to Rémi and the staff at the academy for their work because being able to test ourselves here in Prague, with 12 youth acaedmy products in our squad, is magnificent. A shame that Licha was injured but the youngsters gave an indication of a bright future here at the club. I've already thanked them personally, because they responded to the message I gave them about coherence and tactical discipline at the beginning of the season. This result lets us prepare for Toulouse without too much stress in a league season that is much more open than we were led to believe it would be. Lisandro injured his ankle but he was smiling again this morning. We'l see what further examinations show."

Yoann Gourcuff:
"I'm satisfied with the result. We played in tough conditions on a terrible pitch. Bravo to the young lads, they really helped the side over the bridge here. Even though we should have been able to protect our one-goal lead, it's a good result for us. I tried to stay close to Yassine, to talk to him, to try and establish a rapport. It's great that he scored, and that Jordan and Rachid also did well. It's all good. I could have scored too, even though I didn't see that much of the ball. Still, the most importsant thing is that I didn't get injured again. We're coming into a run of matches against big teams and it will be an important time for sides who want to be at the top of the table. We'll see whether we're capable of mixing it. We lost Licha tonight but despite the injuries we'll see what we can produce. Michel and Jimmy are one the verge of returning to action, the youngsters are ready, so bring on the rest of the season."

Yassine Benzia: 
"We came here to clinch top spot. The team was younger than usual but we stepped up and I scored a key goal, so it's all good tonight! My understanding with Yoann paid off tonight and I'm very happy to have scored. But tonight wasn't an end in itself: I want to keep working, keep playing and prove that I deserve more game time."

Jordan Ferri:
"We really wanted to give our all tonight, and in the end we did that, and qualified, so everyone's happy. The coach was satisfied with the account we gave of ourselves out on the pitch tonight. Of course you want to be a starter in every match, but all in good time. I'm ready to play in any position at all!"

Samuel Umtiti:
"The OL youth academy can be proud of the image it sent out tonight.All the young lads got the job done and achieved the objective. Nonetheless, our last match will see us just as keen to give our all. Tonight is a great moment for the squad."

Rachid Ghezzal:
"We came here without fear, with the feeling that we knew what had to be done. It's great for the whole squad. There was a bit of pressure and anxiety, which explains our timid start to the match. I had a great chance to score, and Yassine finished it off. He's a thoroughbred striker, so that's great for him. We achieved our objective even though we didn't win."

Rémy Vercoutre: 
"Everyone is in the groove now and everyone showed a lot of desire and maturity. The fans are seeing these youngsters for the first time, but we see their quality on a daily basis. Four wins and a draw... we would have signed for that with no second thoughts at the beginning of the season. Now we have to mix it with the sides looking for a top-three spot, and it'll be tough with some big matches to play. But we're ready."

Clément Grenier: 
"We achieved our objective in style, which is great for everyone at the club. It was unusual but excellent to be surrounded by so many young players. This match will remain a great memory for every one of us. We would have liked to win it, but it's still not a bad result. I moved around a lot between Gueida and Yoann, but we had a very good understanding."

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