On the result...
"I am pleased with the performance and the attitude of the team. The players are a little bit frustrated because they did not get the points but you have to realistic as well.

"One-nil down after five minutes after a little bit of an edgy start against a  team who are strong on set-pieces, counter-attacks and have such a support at home. You sometimes lose these types of games even if you are the better side.

"Overall I thought we showed fantastic quality today as well as mental strength and togetherness. We come out of this first test stronger."

On the first big test...
"I felt with played without handbrake or restrictions. We were faithful to the game we wanted to play. That means based on technical quality and our movement and our risky game. Overall we handled that very well. During the game I thought whether we win or lose I cannot fault my team because they played a fantastic game.

"I felt we were a bit nervous because we knew what everyone was expecting of us today and we were a little bit caught on the ball. We know Liverpool do that well at home. After the goal went in we started to play and we saw a different picture.

"I hope we convinced a few more people. There is along way to go but I think we have the ability to fight up there."

On the substitutions...
"The substitutions when they work are inspired. I would give much more credit to the team than the quality of the substitutions."

On what has changed since last season...
"That is a question that would be a good paper for a journalist. Certainly the players are growing because they are very, very young, the confidence is bigger and the belief is stronger because we had a good start.

"Last year we swam against the stream. We had just moved into a new stadium and were seven points behind after three games. Then your environment is not as positive. But you could see signs we had quality because we did well in the big games and we have matured."

On facing Manchester United on Saturday...
"The only thing I can say is that it is another test. But, after today we go into that game much stronger."


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28 Oct 2007