Anzhi Makhachkala’s Willian: I'm here to win
Anzhi Makhachkala’s Willian has stated that he wants to help his new club progress and win titles like he did at Shakhtar Donetsk.
The Brazilian winger, who moved to Russia in a €35 million deal in January, proved his credentials as a winner at Shakhtar, helping them to four league titles, three Ukrainian Cups and Super Cups apiece, and the UEFA Cup in 2009.
Willian has revealed his goal is to repeat that success with Anzhi, who are making great strides after arriving in the Russian Football Premier League as second division champions only two seasons ago.
He told FIFA.com: "I’ve come here to do the same that I did at Shakhtar: to play well, win titles and take the club as high as they can go. In short, my aim is to win.
"The club has got a big future. They’re signing players, putting together a great squad and competing with the richest clubs in Europe, while also fighting it out for the league championship. We’ve got a strong and well-drilled squad."
Anzhi coach Guus Hiddink is using Willian in a more advanced position than he previously played, using him as a withdrawn striker, which the Seleção international has been happy to make as he tries to justify his huge price tag.
Willian added: "He’s shown complete faith in me. In that first game I played in a different way to what I’d been doing at Shakhtar, though it was a lot more similar to my role when I broke through at Corinthians.
"Obviously they’re going to want a return on that [transfer fee], but I’ve got to stay cool. I can’t put pressure on myself when I go out there.
"I’ve got to let things happen naturally so that I can show they made the right decision in spending that money."
Willian played his part in Anzhi's Europa League 1-1 draw with Hannover on Thursday night, which helped the Russian side progress to the next round of the competition with a 4-2 aggregate win.
They will meet Premier League side Newcastle United on March 6 and 13 to compete for a place in the final eight.
"We’re going to try and win the lot: the league, the cup and the Europa League," Willian concluded.
"We’re going to play with ambition. They’re tough tournaments, but when you look at what the club's doing in buying players and putting a strong unit together, then the titles are bound to come.
"Who knows, they might come straightaway? After all, that’s what I was used to in Ukraine."