Chelsea earned a credible 0-0 draw with Atletico Madrid in Tuesday’s Champions League semi-final first leg although with unwanted injuries as Petr Cech and John Terry were both forced off through injury.
Midfield duo Frank Lampard and John Obi Mikel will miss the return leg at Stamford Bridge through suspension, along with Atletico skipper Gabi, after picking up yellow cards on Tuesday.
Chelsea looked too strong at the back, with Cahill putting up a determined display. The result will leave the English side feeling upbeat about its chances of returning to the final, two years after beating Bayern Munich on penalties.
Mourinho’s game plan was not a pleasant one for the spectators watching, but it was certainly was effective.
The second leg is at Stamford Bridge on April 30 with the winner playing either Bayern or Real Madrid in the May 24 final at Lisbon.
Mourinho spoke afterwards on the match and was happy with his side’s display as everything would not be decided in the second leg of the game which will be home advantage for Mourinho
‘This result leaves everything even more related to small details for the second leg. We had problems before the game, during the game and lost four players, two with injuries and two with yellow cards, but we will fight’, said the Portuguese boss
‘Ivanovic is back, Schwarzer showed we can trust him. People that aren’t playing a lot, like Ashley Cole, gave an amazing performance. If we have to play the kids we will. Before, Atletico spoke about the game of their lives, now the game of their lives is at Stamford Bridge.
‘Nobody starts a game thinking of a 0-0 but the game goes in a certain direction where you feel you have to be safe and not concede, try to score in one of the chances you create. We had three or four corners and two free-kicks in dangerous positions. If we scored one of them the result would have been very good. We didn’t, and we go with a result where everything will be decided at Stamford Bridge.’
He also went on to praise the character of his side:
‘Everybody did a great job. A tired David Luiz, after playing in midfield, stepped back and played in central defence for the last 20-25 minutes, which wasn’t easy. For Ashley to play this type of game after so many games not playing, was amazing. Mikel, Lampard and Torres were immense. Every player gave everything and I’m obviously very pleased.’
Petr Cech and John Terry’s injury comes as a blow to the Blues, who will now miss their senior players in the penultimate part of the campaign. Mourinho informed the media about their injuries:
‘Petr Cech’s season is over. Don’t ask me to explain it technically, but it’s over. With John, we’ll have to play in the final for him to play with us again.’
Highlights From The Match: