Andre Schurrle hails Wolfsburg's defending in 'deserved' win over Gent
Andre Schurrle said Wolfsburg "deserved" to reach the Champions League quarterfinals after his goal led the Bundesliga side to a 1-0 win over Gent on Tuesday.
Wolfsburg led 3-2 after the first leg, and Schurrle credited his side's defensive effort in ensuring they advanced past the round of 16 for the first time in their history.
"We knew that Gent needed to come forward, that we'd have to defend, Schurrle said. "Over the 90 minutes it was deserved because Gent didn't have any 100 percent chances.
"I think both teams lost strength towards the end and that played into our hands."
With powerhouses like Barcelona and Real Madrid in the compeition, Gent were among the most favourable of draws for Wolfsburg, and sporting director Klaus Allofs acknowledged it would only get more challenging from this point forward.
"It's sensational. We wouldn't have believed it at the start of the season but now we've managed it," Allofs said.
"We'll see. There are some big teams there, being honest, against whom it would be really difficult, but there are some others against whom we'd fancy our chances."
Wolfsburg manager Dieter Hecking said defeating Gent was no easy task, while admitting that his side would be the grand underdogs in the quarterfinals.
"A very big compliment to my team," he said. "We were the favourites in this tie and we've confirmed that with two good performances. Everybody thought, that this draw would be easy for us, but it wasn't. We had to give a lot to get through, but we built a foundation to qualify in Gent.
"The quarterfinal is a very big success for us -- and we're able to go even further. This might not be the end. Of course we are the outsiders in the next round, but we will have a chance. I'm not finished with the Champions League yet. We're hoping for a good draw -- it should be exciting."
However, forward Max Kruse had no doubt that Wolfsburg are worthy of a quarterfinal place.
"I think you could say that over the two legs we were superior and that we deserve to go through," Kruse said. "We'll see how far we get."
Gent coach Hein Vanhaezebrouck insisted his side did have opportunities but failed to convert.
"There have been moments where we had the chance to score, but we didn't take them," he said. "We were well organised and had chances to score the first goal. If we'd gone 1-0 up it might have been a different match, but nevertheless we performed well.
"We wanted to get an early goal and we created the chances to do that. In the second half we had to take more risks and brought on some more attacking players, but just in this moment we conceded the decisive goal.
"We played better than we did at home and did not concede easy goals, like we did in the first leg. That was quite OK.
"We've done very well in the competition, and we say goodbye in a good way. This season makes me confident for the future."