Borussia Dortmund left-back Marcel Schmelzer hailed the team spirit after they topped their group with a 2-0 win at Monaco on Tuesday.
Atletico Madrid’s goalless draw at home with Club Brugge meant Dortmund finished top of Group A by goal aggregate after their 2-0 win at Monaco.
‘We’re really happy to have finished first in this group,” Schmelzer told the club’s website.
“We took our foot off the gas a bit in the second half and that allowed Monaco to get back into the game. That caused a few problems, but then, fortunately, we were able to get the second goal.
“The coach had pointed out in his pre-match analysis that Monaco try to close down any space in the middle of the park and that this would mean that we’d have plenty of room out wide, which turned out to be the case on a few occasions.
“It was really hard work for me out there after almost two months out, but it felt good at the same time.
“Huge compliments have to go to all the players out there. Today showed exactly what it is that’s made us so strong this year: all those players who maybe don’t play so often never let their heads drop, instead they go out there and perform every bit as well as they do in training.
“This really helps push the team forward. Everyone wanted to make the most of the opportunity.”