Valencia coach Marcelino revelled in the “happiest day” of his career after beating Barcelona in the Copa del Rey final on Saturday.
First-half goals from Kevin Gameiro and Rodrigo helped Valencia to an upset 2-1 victory in Seville, securing the club’s eighth Copa crown.
Lionel Messi scored in the second half for Barca, but Valencia held on to give Marcelino his first trophy since taking charge in May 2017.
The former Sevilla and Villarreal boss, who led Recreativo to the Segunda Division title in 2005-06 for his only other trophy, was delighted.
“It’s the happiest day of my career. It’s the win. There is always a first final and a first win,” Marcelino told a news conference.
“I thank the players, the coaching staff, my family… Everyone has helped me become the happiest person in the world on a professional level.
“Last year was magnificent. We started this year badly – or not well, let’s say – because we were competing even when the results weren’t there. That suffering has given us this.
“The players gave me the opportunity to win this. The love and gratitude that we have is mutual.”
Una para la HISTORIA DEL VALENCIANISMO
Somos una gran FAMILIA y JUNTOS lo hemos conseguido
— Valencia CF (@valenciacf) May 25, 2019
Marcelino was under pressure earlier in the season after Valencia claimed just one win from their opening 11 LaLiga games, but they recovered to finish fourth.
The 53-year-old was thankful to the club and his players after turning their season around.
“In moments of difficulty, the players showed their support for me. I was grateful for that and I’ll never forget it,” Marcelino said.
“It wasn’t easy for the club to place so much confidence in me, and it wasn’t easy to turn the situation around the way that we did.
“It’s been shown that I wasn’t so bad before, nor am I so good now.”
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