Atlético Mineiro Head coach Cuca blasts "shameful" performance
Atlético Mineiro Head coach Cuca has apologised after his team’s shock 3-1 defeat to rank outsiders Raja Casablanca in the FIFA Club World Cup on Wednesday night.
It was predicted that Atlético would meet Bayern Munich in the final on Sunday but two late goals after Ronaldinho had equalised consigned Galo to defeat.
Cuca told reporters after the game that everyone in his team failed to perform.
“Almost everyone played badly… we have to be responsible, professional and divide the blame for a bad game and apologise to our fans. We have to lift ourselves quickly no matter how difficult that seems.
“We expected to get the anxiety out of our system after the first 15 or 20 minutes. Instead, we created chances and missed incredible goals and that created more anxiety.
“When we equalised, we had the game at our mercy, but with five or six minutes to go we allowed them a counter-attack and conceded the second goal.”
Cuca, who has been coach of the Belo Horizonte club for the last two years, admitted it was a “shameful” performance and that Atlético should have committed more professional fouls.
“We only gave away seven free-kicks in the match, and although it’s not right to say this, there are times when you have to commit fouls in midfield.
“It’s shameful, we are all ashamed, we made our fans sad. There are so many fans who stopped at nothing to come here, humble people who saved up for years and we frustrated their dreams.
“This was the most important game of the season for us. It’s tough to be sitting here justifying this performance, but that’s part of our lives in football I’ve come here to face the music.”