Shakhtar Donetsk coach Mircea Lucescu believes his side’s UEFA Cup triumph could act as a stepping stone for the club as they target success in the Champions League.
Shakhtar defeated Werder Bremen 2-1 in the final in Istanbul with Jadson’s winner in extra time secuing the spoils for Lucescu’s team, who became the first Ukrainian side to win a European trophy.
“This first trophy is fantastic,” said Lucescu. “There is a great feeling of satisfaction and I am extremely happy. But we want other things. We want to do something in the Champions League.
“This will give us the confidence to reach the quarter-finals or the semi-finals of the Champions League.
“My aim is to continue to build this team, to make it better than it is today. I have this passion and want to give my players this conviction. The Champions League will be the aim for eastern European countries.
“Now I think eastern European countries have the chance to win the Champions League and we will try to do it.”
Shakhtar’s victory owed much to the contribution of the club’s Brazilian contingent, with quintet of Willian, Fernandinho, Ilsinho, Adriano and Jadson at the heart of their play.
“I am very happy for my Brazilian players,” Lucescu added. “Now people will know them and maybe [Brazil coach] Dunga as well.
“My philosophy is to build teams, to educate players, to try to bring through young players. It’s a big passion and I will do it for as long as I can.”
Bremen coach Thomas Schaaf admitted after the match that his side had failed to do themselves justice and conceded that the better team on the night won.
“Altogether we weren’t able to attack as much as usual,” he said. “We knew we couldn’t give them space because they are very fast, so we tried to play tight and turn on the break, but it didn’t work that way.
“We weren’t able to attack and use the space that well. Our ball control was not as good as usual, particularly in midfield, and we weren’t able to target the opposition goal. We had some chances, but didn’t make the most of them.
“We will have to learn from that in the future.”
“We gave them too much space and lost too many balls. I congratulate Shakhtar, they were the best team on the night.”