Cesare Prandelli was a proud man after watching his Fiorentina side overcome Everton on penalties to reach the UEFA Cup quarter-finals.
The Viola travelled to Liverpool with a 2-0 lead from the first leg but saw their advantage evaporate courtesy of goals from Andy Johnson and Mikel Arteta.
French goalkeeper Sebastien Frey was the hero with a stunning save on Phil Jagielka’s spot-kick as the Tuscans won the shootout 4-2 to progress to Friday's last eight draw.
"The lads gave everything," Prandelli beamed on La7. "We found ourselves faced with such difficulties, not least because they were so physical.
"We hardly ever managed to keep the ball on the ground, but when we did we saw the results.
"My only disappointment was the second goal that we conceded on the break.
"I praised all my players before the shootout but told them to concentrate because it wasn’t over. I am happy that they can grow from this valuable experience."
Prandelli finished with words of encouragement for hitman Giampaolo Pazzini who had come in for some criticism after recent wasteful performances.
"Pazzini came on and put in a good showing," he said. "He just needs to keep calm."
The quarter-final and semi-final draws take place in Nyon, Switzerland at 1pm tomorrow.
Source: C4 Football Italia