Portugal star Cristiano Ronaldo insists he always believed in his team-mates and Fernando Santos during their memorable Euro 2016 success.
Ronaldo came off injured during the first half, but his team claimed a 1-0 win over France in the final in Paris on Sunday.
Substitute Eder was the hero with a tremendous 25-yard strike in extra time sealing Portugal’s first major title.
Ronaldo, who hurt his knee following a Dimitri Payet tackle, said he never doubted his side.
“I’m so happy – very happy. This was something I’ve wanted for a long time now, ever since 2004. I asked God to give me another chance,” the captain told UEFA.
“The Portuguese people deserve this; our players deserved this.
“Unfortunately, things didn’t go well for me. I injured myself in the first few minutes. But I’ve always believed in these players. They have quality and ability, along with our coach’s strategy to win.”
Ronaldo was just 19 when he played in the Euro 2004 final, which Portugal lost 1-0 to Greece in Lisbon.
The Real Madrid forward was proud to have made history by finally delivering for his nation.
“We beat France and I’m delighted. This is one of the happiest moments in my career,” Ronaldo said.
“I’ve always said I wanted to win a trophy with the national team and make history. And I did it. Thank God, things went well for us.”