The lads - 'Footballistically' brilliant

Last updated : 26 April 2006 By Chris Parry
"It looked like a generous penalty decision but then I said to myself that if it is our year, Jens will save it. I knew he had strength of character, and I knew he would not be beaten easily and there was a lot of pressure on Riquelme and fatigue.

"I felt he just wanted to hit the target and not put it in a corner because he was scared to miss. It comes down to psychological reason and Jens guessed right. Overall it was more of a poker game than good training."

"Maybe I made a good decision to drop him last year. I am pleased because when a guy shows professionalism and a winning attitude, you always want him to be rewarded. When I think where he started when he came to England, and the steps he has made since, he deserved a lot of credit."

"I was worried. We have shown character and resilience but we did not find our game. Going forward we were always losing the ball too quickly and that was down to Villarreal's quality and we seemed to be suffering a little bit physically.

"We just wanted so much to go to the final. In the end there was a bit of luck and a lot of character that we have gone through.

"We will see a different Arsenal team in the final. We will recover physically and no matter what happens we have everything to win. We will give it our best shot. I believe we can do it."

"Sol had a good game. He was always under pressure and could never relax. Look at how long he has been out, and the way he played and I am very happy with him."

"The last time there was a final in Paris it was two Spanish teams in it and before the game I was concerned because I thought it could be the same again, but now I am very happy. I would go anywhere in the world to play a Champions League final but it will cost me a few more tickets in Paris."