Last Updated: Fri, 08 Mar 2013 07:46
Rafael Benitez is confident Chelsea will reach the Europa League quarter-finals by overturning their 1-0 defeat to Steaua Bucharest.
In the first of two games in four days and the Blues' 50th game of a turbulent season, last season's Champions League winners were beaten after Ryan Bertrand was penalised for pulling back Raul Rusescu, who converted a 34th-minute spot-kick.
Blues interim manager Benitez described the penalty award as "soft" but Chelsea were lacklustre, offering little attacking threat, and take a deficit into next week's second leg at Stamford Bridge.
"We know that we have to do our job now at home," said Benitez, who must now take his side to Manchester United for Sunday's FA Cup quarter-final.
"In these kind of games and this kind of competition, if you don't score away it's always more difficult. Still you have to believe. We are disappointed, but still we have the belief we will win at home."
The decisive moment came when left-back Iasmin Latovlevici, earmarked as a dangerman by Benitez on the eve of the match, crossed with the outside of his right foot towards Rusescu, whose attempts to reach the ball were thwarted by a pull from Bertrand.
Referee Sergey Karasev booked the left-back, playing in place of Ashley Cole and exposed at the far post, and Rusescu sent the resulting spot-kick under Petr Cech.
"I think it was very soft," Benitez told ESPN. "To give a penalty in this situation, and especially when you have so many referees in their positions, it is soft.
"You cannot change the situation but it is very soft. If you give the penalty, why not the (red) card? Strange."
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