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First or second doesn´t worry Gillot

Bordeaux coach Francis Gillot is unfazed as to whether his side qualify from Europa League Group D in first or second place.

The French side lead the group by one point ahead of their final match against second-placed Newcastle United on Thursday, with both sides having already secured passages into the knockout rounds.

Gillot’s men suffered a 3-0 defeat in the reverse fixture against the Premier League outfit, but the Frenchman is expecting a closer encounter at Stade Chaban Delmas.

“The goal was to qualify for the group stage,” the Frenchman said.

“We had to play the Red Star Belgrade, it was not easy. We did it. Then we qualified for the knockout phase, so it was the most important thing to do.

“First or second place? There are big teams if you finish first, there are big teams if you finish second. So it doesn’t matter.

“But we’ll play tomorrow to win, obviously. If I put out this team, it’s because I trust these players and I hope that they’ll show some interesting things individually so that we’ll be good as a team and at least get a draw to get top spot.”

Pressed for more of his thoughts about the defeat at St. James’ Park, Gillot said he thought the 3-0 scoreline flattered Newcastle.

“We played a good Newcastle team … In the Europa League, we knew that we were not the favourites, it was Newcastle, so it hurts less,” he said.

“However, the 3-0 score is a bit harsh for us because the third goal was offside.”

Thu 6 December, 2012
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