Pique's final joy
Barcelona defender Gerard Pique has spoken of his relief and delight after Andres Iniesta's injury-time strike.
Last Updated: 06/05/09 10:57pm
Barcelona defender Gerard Pique has spoken of his relief and delight after Andres Iniesta's injury-time strike broke Chelsea hearts to book his side's passage to the UEFA Champions League final.
For long spells in West London it was Chelsea that dominated as Michael Essien's stunning goal looked to be good enough to set up a repeat of last season's final against Manchester United.
It was not to be though as Iniesta's brilliant away goal at the death proved to be enough for Josep Guardiola's Barca following a goalless first leg.
Pique concedes it was especially difficult after Eric Abidal was shown a red card in the 66th minute for a trip on Nicolas Anelka, but the former Man United stopper insists he never lost faith in the idea of progressing to the final.
"At one point in the game it was really hard when we had ten men and they were attacking but finally in the last minute we scored a goal," he told Sky Sports.
"I have no words to describe how happy the team is at this moment.
"I think a team like this, that likes to attack all the time, cannot go 180 minutes without a goal. It was in the last minute but it was still enough to go through to the final."
Chelsea were enraged at the final whistle as they felt they should have been awarded as many as three penalties, with one claim involving Pique as it appeared as if Anelka flicked the ball against his hand.
Pique admits the ball touched his hand but feels the match officials made the correct call in waving away Chelsea's protestations.
"To be fair the ball hit my hand but I did not want to touch it and the referee can decide to say it was a pen. You have to respect the decision - sometimes he is wrong - but as I said, I am just happy. We cannot control it."