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Andre draws positives from performance

Posted on 21 September 2012  - 02:10

Andre Villas-Boas expressed his delight at the team's performance after we dominated against in-form SS Lazio but had to settle for a 0-0 draw in our Europa League, Group J opener at the Lane on Thursday night.

Lazio arrived in London with five wins out of five to their name this season, including three out of three in Serie A.

That form counted for little though as we took the game to the Italian giants from the first whistle.

In the end, we had three goals disallowed - Clint Dempsey in the first half, Jermain Defoe and Steven Caulker in the second - and statistics showed nine shots to Lazio's one over the 90 minutes.

But that all-important goal proved elusive as Lazio - who struck the crossbar at the end of the first half - were forced deeper and deeper but showed the resilience we come to expect from Italian teams.

So it ended a point apiece, but Andre had plenty of positives to reflect on, including a debut for Hugo Lloris in goal, a full debut for Clint and Steven's first start of the campaign, with both Hugo and Steven playing their part in a first clean sheet.

"It was a very positive game and I’m extremely happy about the performance," said Andre.

"In the end, we saw Lazio drop back. We had the initiative of the ball, created opportunities, put the ball in the back of the net three times and deserved to get something out of the game, for sure.

"This is a team who are doing well, came here extremely motivated and thought they could win the game.

"But without fear, we held onto the ball to create our chances and promoted good, attacking football."

Thursday night's other match saw Maribor of Slovenia beat Greek side Panathinaikos 3-0 to top Group J.

Matchday Two on Thursday, October 4 sees us travel to Athens to meet Panathinaikos while Lazio host Maribor.