Sevilla's shoot-out hero Beto has described his pride after the Spanish club won a record-equalling third UEFA Europa League. Beto kept out two spot-kicks as his side won 4-2 on penalties after a goalless draw in Wednesday's final against Portuguese giants Benfica in Turin.
"It's a beautiful, historic achievement for me, the team and Sevilla," Beto told the club's official website. "We deserve this title and we are so proud to defend these colours."
The former Porto player stood strong to save Oscar Cardozo and Rodrigo's attempts as his side took the trophy.
"We, the goalkeepers, always study the players that usually take the penalties," the 32-year-old said. "I know very well the Benfica players but in the final seconds it's a case of instinct and a little bit of luck."
The Portuguese stopper showered Emery with praise for the work the Spanish tactician has done to create a strong team spirit since arriving at Sevilla in January 2013.
"The secret to our glory has been the unity of the team. We don't want stars, we want to be a team," Beto added. "All the merit is of Unai (Emery), who has succeeded in joining together all of our strengths. We have been able to build a strong group, a fantastic team with a united changing room."
Emery, whose side are fifth in Spanish La Liga, was satisfied that he and his players were rewarded for their efforts throughout the competition. Sevilla, 2006 and 2007 UEFA Cup winners, were made to work hard to reach the final in Turin. A last-gasp goal saw Sevilla progress to the final on away goals with a 3-3 aggregate draw with Valencia. The Andalusian side had previously beat Porto, Betis and Maribor.
"We have had to suffer a lot to get to the final and this is our reward," Emery said. "Benfica is a great team and they were the favourites. We knew it was going to be hard. But we were able to defend and suffer in order to win on penalties."
Sevilla captain Ivan Rakitic, who was voted man-of-the-match against Benfica, was ecstatic to win his first title with the Spanish club.
"Things go so fast in football and we have to enjoy this," he said. "I want to thanks my team-mates, the club and our fantastic fans. We have done an incredible job and we all worked together to achieve this."