Having scored a hat-trick against Borussia Mönchengladbach, Bayer 04 Leverkusen hero Javier 'Chicharito' Hernandez was all smiles come the final whistle.
Chicharito (Leverkusen striker): “It feels good to score a hat-trick. This ball [the matchball he took as a souvenir] will go in my house but all my team-mates are going to sign it because it was a team-effort, not just mine. Some people think scoring goals is a striker’s only job but I’m not obsessed with scoring; that’s a consequence of the team’s work. I’m very happy. What we can take from this is the performance from the whole team, including the substitutes. We didn’t concede any goals and we had a bit of luck to, compared to last Wednesday [against Barcelona in the Champions League]. In that game we scored one, now we scored five. That’s football! We can’t predict anything.”
Stefan Kießling (Leverkusen striker): "The whole team contributed to the win. I was raring to go after doing a lot of thinking lately. Having played on a regular basis at this club for ten years, I was obviously keen to start. And everything went to plan today! I like playing with a second striker, we can help each other out."
Christoph Kramer (Leverkusen midfielder): "I knew we could win today, but I definitely didn’t expect such a big win. It was important for us to get the three points. We can go into the new year in positive spirits if we manage a win our last game of 2015 next week. Stefan [Kießling] is an incredibly important player, who has a lot to give to the team."
Roger Schmidt (Leverkusen head coach): "It was a crucial game for us, and the team gave the right answer. We started well and created chances from the off while defending really well. We scored some great goals today. [On Kießling] He scored two today and set up a couple as well. He played superbly which isn’t a given, having not played much in the last few weeks."
Granit Xhaka (Gladbach midfielder): "We weren’t able to play our game today. Some might have thought that after beating Bayern, we would get the better of anyone. I’m not looking for excuses, we were fit enough to play Leverkusen today [despite Gladbach’s involvement in the UEFA Champions League in midweek]."
Andre Schubert (Gladbach head coach): "The last few weeks have been tiring and you could see that today. We have one more game in the Bundesliga and one more in the DFB Cup - then we can enjoy a well-deserved break. We made too many mistakes today which we'll look at. Leverkusen are a side that play high up the pitch, and we should have countered that. We got a little bit unlucky when we hit the post shortly after the break, but you have to admit that Leverkusen deserved to win."