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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Nov 1, 2006

PSV coach Koeman surprised by quick progress

EINDHOVEN, Netherlands, Nov 1 (Reuters) - PSV Eindhoven coach Ronald Koeman was surprised by his team's progress after they reached the last 16 of the Champions League with two group games to spare following a 2-0 win over Galatasaray.

Belgian international Timmy Simons broke the deadlock on the hour and Arouna Kone sealed PSV's third consecutive win with six minutes remaining.

PSV, who drew their opening match against Liverpool, secured their spot among Europe's finest after four matches, becoming the first Dutch side to qualify so early on in the tournament.

Ajax, the 1995 champions, had always needed at least five matches to qualify for the next stage.

'It is strange to see the group standings right now and I think we have to get used to that,' Koeman told reporters.

'It is surprising what we did in only four matches but despite some changes we had we have a real team already.

'The new boys adjusted perfectly and the squad understands there is more in it. We have to see where it ends.'

PSV travel to Liverpool, who have also qualified, on Nov. 22 and host Bordeaux two weeks later in the final group match.

It is the third year in succession the Dutch champions have reached the last 16 but Koeman was targeting a big finish for the group stage.

'With two matches left we want to get a maximum result,' he said.

A score draw at Anfield and a win over Bordeaux would be enough to top Group C.

'This is luxury and we didn't expect it after the draw, because we thought it was a tough group' midfielder Simons told reporters.

'We are getting better every week also because our performances in the Dutch league gave us more confidence.'

'We have a tight team that rarely gives away any chances, while our offence always is dangerous.'

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