Second-half goals from Alan and Rentería sealed a great Group E victory for the Portuguese side after Luis Aguiar had given them the lead before the break, and also give Braga a triumph against English opposition for the first time in eight UEFA club competition games. However, the 54-year-old Jesus was adamant the result was no more than his side deserved.
"We were the better side by far," he said. "We faced a quality team playing direct football towards Peter Crouch and we managed to control that strategy. We prepared well for this game and deserved to win. We are no closer to qualifying as AC Milan, [VfL] Wolfsburg and Portsmouth are very good teams but today we were tremendous. I think Braga can be the surprise package of this group."
Having kicked off their European campaign in the third and final round of this summer's UEFA Intertoto Cup, Braga have hit a startling run of form in continental competition, though they are yet to find their feet in the Liga, lying 12th after five games. "We have won all seven of our matches in Europe this season, scored 17 goals and not conceded," said Jesus with pride.
Beating English opponents had a little added edge for Braga, not least because they were knocked out of last season's competition by Tottenham Hotspur FC. The club wore green-and-white hoops in honour of Sporting Clube de Portugal until they switched to their current red-and-white kit, a nod towards London giants Arsenal FC that would see them pick up their nickname of the Minho Arsenal.
Braga's only major honour to date came in winning the 1966 Portuguese Cup, but some feel the northern side are strong enough to compete for the title, and Jesus may be one of them. "We have played 14 competitive matches this season and won ten of them," he said. "It's a spectacular start for us. It's true that we have not been so great in the Liga but we are still playing in all competitions. Show me a Portuguese team that have done as well as we have."
©UEFA.com 1998-2014. All rights reserved.