Madrid (AP) – Badly played, great performance: Borussia Mönchengladbach should not be ashamed of their historic European Cup moment in Madrid.
It is true that coach Marco Rose’s previous Champions League surprise team showed the weakest performance of the group stage on Wednesday in the 2-0 (0-2) final group stage match at Real Madrid. Nevertheless, in the end the second place in the group in the third Champions League participation after 2015 and 2016, the first participation in the knockout round.
“I am very proud of the boys. This is a special moment for the fans, for the club that we are very happy with”, said Rose, as the other group opponents Inter Milan and Shakhtar Donetsk only played 0-0. With ten points, the previously stumbling Real ensured the victory in the group. Gladbach, second in the round of 16 draw on Monday, is once again drawn to a heavyweight in European football: Liverpool FC, Manchester City, Chelsea FC, Juventus Turin or Paris St. Germain.
“We deserved that earlier with our strong performance,” said the enthusiastic captain Lars Stindl and Christoph Kramer: “The bottom line is that we didn’t have a chance today. But the bottom line is we deserve it. in an incredibly difficult group. “
In fact, Gladbach would have earned the first round of 16 in the European premier class 43 years earlier. In the 1977/78 season, Borussia had reached the semi-finals of the Champions League predecessor European Cup for the last time. The Champions League knockout round could have made the Borussia perfect before, maybe even. The strong performances at Inter and in the first leg against Real (both 2-2) were unrewarded by late equalizing goals. “We deserve to be in this difficult group with eight points in the eighth finals. We scored against every opponent,” said Rose.
The Gladbachers spoke so willingly honestly about their discouraged performance in the decisive group match in Madrid. “Really under Duck, as you performed today, that’s a level we were struggling with today,” said Rose, who admitted he lost “very, very rightly”. Real would have been eliminated for the first time in a Champions League participation in the preliminary round if they had been defeated.