Europa League: Prestatyn coach Chris Hughes praises historic win

 

Prestatyn Town head coach Chris Hughes praised his players' spirit after they came from behind to beat Liepajas Metalurgs in a Europa League thriller.

The Latvian side had won the first leg in Wales 2-1 and took the lead in Thursday's second leg.

But Neil Gibson levelled the first qualifying round tie on aggregate with a 90th-minute goal and the Welsh side went through after a penalty shoot-out.

"At Prestatyn we never, ever know when we're beaten," Hughes said.

"That's a trait of ours - we never give in, we always keep going, we've got that 'never say die' attitude and that saw us through.

"Especially in the penalties, the four lads who took the penalties showed fantastic composure - two of theirs missed, but we kept our composure."

Welsh Premier League club Prestatyn face travelling to Croatia's HNK Rijeka for the second qualifying round first leg on Thursday, 18 July.

An added reward for the Seasiders is that they have earned another 130,000 euros for progressing through the first qualifying round, taking their Europa League prize money up to 250,000 euros.

Prestatyn can also take pride that they remain in the competition, after fellow Welsh Premier sides Airbus UK Broughton and Bala Town were knocked out of the Europa league following close defeats the same evening.

"We've created history and it's an unbelievable feeling... I'm almost speechless, we can't believe what we've just done," Hughes added.

"It's a fantastic achievement, it's great for Welsh football, great for the Welsh Premier League as well.

"Bala won a game, Airbus have drawn their two games, we've won one and lost one - I'm passionate about the league; we all are, and it shows we're getting better."