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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Nov 2, 2006

Mourinho: Chelsea on course for Euro glory

Jose Mourinho believes Chelsea are a packing a much greater punch in Europe this season.

Mourinho did his summer shopping with the Champions League in mind, bringing the big-game experience of Michael Ballack and Andriy Shevchenko to Stamford Bridge.

The Blues, undefeated in Group A and virtually through to the knockout rounds, sent a message to their rivals by taking four points from two matches with holders Barcelona.

Mourinho said: 'I cannot predict the future because I can find Spanish teams, English teams, German teams, Italian teams who can also win the competition.

'But the reality is that we're playing Champions League much better than last season.

'In our two victories at home to Werder Bremen and Barcelona we did very well. The victory in Levski Sofia was easy but we did it. And this was our best performance of our four games in the Champions League.'

Chelsea came from behind twice to earn a 2-2 draw in Barca's Nou Camp on Tuesday with a stoppage-time equaliser from Didier Drogba.

Mourinho said: 'I was thinking there was still a chance to do it and how unfair it would be to lose a game where we were the best team by far.

'The goal came in the last minute but it was more than deserved. It would have been very, very unfair to go home without a point.'

Frank Lampard agreed the new-look Chelsea proved their self-belief and resilience with their gutsy fightback in the Nou Camp.

Lampard said: 'Maybe we would have lost the game in the past.

'When you come to these places, it's such an arena and they have such big names - but we have big names too and you have to realise that.

'You must have a character that says `Give me the ball and I can play'.

'Last year we didn't quite have that, we were a bit in awe of them maybe. But this time we stood up and, if we've matured in that way, then great.'

Captain John Terry believes the team can measure their progress from their efforts against Barca because the teams have met in each of the last three seasons.

Terry said: 'It says an awful lot about us. We have come here in the last couple of years and played really well but this was special.

'We came here with the ref against us and everybody against us and we came out of it the better side. We were unfortunate not to get a win but we're delighted with a point.

'This game feels a little bit like a derby. It was a great atmosphere. There were tackles, arguments and things like that, which are good. Both sides wanted to win.

'We stayed relatively calm with everything going against us. We showed great togetherness.

'They tried all game but we expected that and we're mature enough to sometimes walk away and sometimes stand our ground.'

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