The victory by 3-0 over Sport-PE, this Saturday (18), crowned the 200th game of coach Cuca as commander of Atlético-MG, adding the two passages that the Curitibano had at Alvinegro. The three points won at home, even kept the distance of seven points to the vice-leader Palmeiras in the Brazilian Championship, competition in which the Rooster occupies the top and tries to breakfast that has lasted since 1971 without the cup.
Honoured by President Sérgio Batista Coelho with a plaque, Cuca thanked the club and highlighted that, without the support of family, friends and professionals who were and are at his side during this period, nothing would be possible. For him, it is an important milestone in the world of the ball.
“In Brazil and in the world it is not easy to make 200 matches and with good numbers like the ones we have here. God bless that we can improve these marks even more”, highlighted Cuca.
Asked about the pressure for titles, Cuca pointed out that, despite the Atletico team flying this season, the degree of difficulty is increasing and opponents have the same 50% favouritism before the ball rolls. Galo is a semifinalist in the Copa do Brasil, where he faces Fortaleza, and in the Libertadores, a tournament in which he has Palmeiras as an opponent.
“We’re going to compete now with Palmeiras and the chances are equal. We’re going to compete with Fortaleza. The changes will also be equal because the guys are doing a lot of work. It’s no use saying we’re favourites because they’re competing with Flamengo, Palmeiras and the big boy’s Brazilian football teams . You fear the desire to win and we need to impose this until the end of the championships”, stressed the coach.
“The difficulties are increasing. We are happy with these numbers today, but failure and success go hand in hand. Now, we have to value what we are doing and always try to improve, because the chance of coming out as winners increases,” he added.
Atlético-MG returns to the field next Tuesday (21) and faces Palmeiras in the first leg of the Libertadores semifinals. The ball starts at 9:30 pm (Brasilia time), at Allianz Parque, and the duel comes back a week later, at Mineirão, in Belo Horizonte.