‘Leverkusen weren’t cold enough’

Roger Schmidt admitted Bayer Leverkusen “did not have enough concentration and cold blood” during Tuesday’s shootout defeat to Atletico Madrid.

The Germans took a 1-0 lead into the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie at the Vicente Calderon but were pegged back early doors by Mario Suarez and subsequently ousted 3-2 on penalties.

“I want to congratulate Atletico on their qualification,” the Coach told UEFA’s official website after the game.

“The match was played at full pelt. I want to congratulate my team too. We defended very well after the early Atletico goal.

“We are a young team without too much experience and it’s not easy to survive in a stadium like the Vicente Calderon.

“We did not have enough concentration and cold blood in the penalty shootout.

“The physical game of Atletico is part of football and something that has brought them a lot of success in recent years.

“This is a very positive mentality. It was a very intense match with few chances and for that reason it was important we were competitive.

“The disappointment is big and there is a lot of sadness because we didn’t get the result we wanted.

“My players did their best on the pitch and they must accept the result. Now they must be focused on the Bundesliga to qualify for next season’s Champions League.

“I’m very happy because I found five volunteers to take the penalties. I tried to choose a safe player for the first one and another safe player for the last one but it didn’t work.”

Tags Bayer Leverkusen Roger Schmidt