Cech and Cahill rue Shakhtar defeat as European champions crash out at first hurdle
00:58 GMT, 6 December 2012
Chelsea duo Petr Cech and Gary Cahill were left to blame results against Juventus as the reason for the Blues becoming the first defending Champions League winners to fall at the group stage tonight.
Chelsea thrashed FC Nordsjaelland 6-1 to grab a first win of Rafael Benitez's reign, but it was not enough as Juve claimed a 1-0 win at Shakhtar Donetsk.
'We knew that it could happen,' Cech told Sky Sports 2. 'We knew that if Donetsk didn't win then we would be out. Unfortunately that is the reality.
Out: Chelsea bowed out of the Champions League
'We did what we could. We had a good performance and scored six goals.'
Chelsea's fate had rested in the hands of Shakhtar after a stuttering campaign that saw the Blues lose at Juventus as well in Ukraine.
Cech, however, believes the opening day 2-2 home draw with the Italian champions was the most damaging result, when his side squandered a 2-0 lead.
'You have results where we lost away to Donetsk and Juventus but I think the main difference was the draw against Juve at home,” said Cech, who saved a penalty tonight when the game was still goalless.
'We were 2-0 up and then ended 2-2. If you drop too many points in the group then you can't go through.'
Cahill echoed the thoughts of his goalkeeper, saying: 'The two results against Juve were damaging for us.
'I've just said that with 10 points sometimes you through but that was not to be in our group. We had to do more than that.'
Benitez admitted there was a hollow feeling in the Chelsea dressing-room afterwards but was determined to focus on the positives of his first win in charge.
Under-fire striker Fernando Torres scored twice in the rout with David Luiz, Juan Mata, Cahill and Oscar also getting on the scoresheet.
'I think always when you win it is a positive. When it is at home it is even better,' he said.
'The way we won, we had 32 attempts and 18 on target, is really good.
'When you win you have to be happy but at same time we are disappointed as we didn't progress.'
Dependent: Fernando Torres scored two goals, but results elsewhere ensure they finished third in the group
Another one: Torres, who has struggled for goals, put in his second for the night
Benitez will now attempt to pick up the pieces of their failed Champions League defence with Chelsea dropping into the Europa League.
The Spaniard will also need to arrest a slump in league form that has seen them drop 10 points behind leaders Manchester United, starting with an away trip to Sunderland on Saturday.
'We have to play another competition but at least we showed the level and quality we asked for,' he said.
'We now have to think about Sunderland and the Europa League.
Misery: Juventus secured a win in Ukraine to ensure they finished top of the group
'But the game was so good today and we can see a lot of positives for the future. We pressed well, we created chances and scored a lot of goals.
'If you ask ask about Fernando also he scored goals.'
Asked about Torres' contribution tonight, Benitez added: 'He has to score. He was playing well and the team was helping him.
'If we create chances he will score goals.'