Diego Tardelli thanks Cuca and hopes Atlético Mineiro can win the 2014 Copa Libertadores
Atlético Mineiro forward Diego Tardelli has thanked outgoing head coach Cuca for the work he has done at the Belo Horizonte-based club.
Cuca departed Atlético after the FIFA Club World Cup, where they finished third, to join Chinese Super League side Shandong Luneng Taishan.
In his time at the club, Cuca won the Campeonato Mineiro twice and the 2013 Copa Libertadores - the first in Atlético’s history.
Tardelli, who was signed by Cuca from Al-Gharafa SC in January, thanked the tactician for bringing success to O Galo. The 28 year-old also hopes they can retain the Copa Libertadores and return to the FIFA Club World Cup next year, after failing to make the final of the 2013 edition.
“We [the squad] didn’t really speak to him [Cuca] about it [him leaving] in the end, because it was a moment just for us, about wanting to end the competition with dignity," he told FIFA.com.
"But all of this puts an even greater value on the year we’ve all had. That’s why the only thing to say is to thank Cuca for the excellent job he’s done over the past two years. Next year I think we’ll win the Libertadores again and come back here [to Morocco].”