Football

Sampaoli: We lost the tie because of missed penalties

Sevilla coach Jorge Sampaoli said it would take him a while to digest the 2-0 defeat by Leicester City yesterday morning (Singapore time) which sent his team out of the Champions League at the last-16 stage and threatened to unravel a season that had promised so much.

The sides have had contrasting paths since the triple Europa League winners outplayed the beleaguered English champions three weeks ago at the Sanchez Pizjuan - Leicester winning their next three games and Sevilla failing to win their last three.

Sampaoli's side have had consecutive draws with Alaves and Leganes and trail La Liga leaders Real Madrid by five points.

The defeat by Leicester, the first European knock-out tie Sevilla have lost since 2012, means that their only realistic objective this season now is to finish in the top three.

"I see myself lying hurt in bed feeling like a dream has gone," Sampaoli said after the match at the King Power Stadium where he, too, was sent off after Samir Nasri's late dismissal.

"We were on top of our opponents the whole time, they sat back and we kept on probing but, unfortunately, we couldn't score."

Sampaoli also cast his eye back to the first leg when Sevilla dominated Leicester in such a one-sided affair that it proved to be title-winning coach Claudio Ranieri's last game in charge of the Foxes, although the Spanish side got only a 2-1 win.

"We lost the tie because we weren't capable of scoring more goals in Seville," he said.

"The two penalties we missed (Joaquin Correa in the first leg and Steven N'zonzi in the second) really hurt us.

"Football is often decided on the smallest details and, in that aspect, we were the worse team."

Nasri, on loan from Manchester City, was given his marching orders in the 74th minute after being shown a second yellow for aiming a headbutt towards Leicester striker Jamie Vardy.

Former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard slammed the Frenchman for losing his head.

Gerrard said: "He was on a second yellow, it's stupid, amateur for a player of that experience."

Ex-Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand added: "It helped Sevilla that he went off, he was playing at testimonial pace, slowing everything down." - WIRE SERVICES

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