The Olympique Lyonnais skipper has commended the Basque outfit on their 2-0 win over les Gones in France, while Xabi Prieto is thinking about 'revenge'
Goals from Antoine Griezmann and Haris Seferovic gave the Basques a priceless 2-0 advantage to take back to the Anoeta return next week, with the Frenchman saying he was ‘surprised’ by the tactics of Jagoba Arrasate’s side.
“We did not expect to be playing such a focused and tough Spanish team," he is quoted as saying by Uefa's official site.
“We watched them in the video session and they were a team that waited for the other team; but tonight we saw the opposite, they came out for us and made it really difficult.
“It is not for nothing that they finished fourth in La Liga; they are a good team and they deserved to win tonight.”
Real skipper Xabi Prieto, meanwhile, is eager to exact revenge on les Gones for his side's 2003-04 exit in the competition to the French giants.
“We wanted a rematch after they knocked us out nine years ago,” he added.
“The fans were impressive and we are grateful. We hope they enjoyed the game and the result. It is clear that we could not have achieved this without them.
“The team was calm and there were moments to enjoy. Everyone would have been happy with a 2-0 result before the game, but the tie is not decided. A bad game could condemn us.”