Papu Gomez believes “these are the best years in the history of Atalanta” but they “suffered a lot” after the Europa League exit.
The Orobici have qualified for Europe in each of the past two seasons, inspired by their Argentinian captain.
“These are the best years in the history of Atalanta,” Gomez told Tuttosport.
“I’m really enjoying them and people will remember us for many years. The squad suffered a lot with the defeat against Copenhagen, after all the effort we’d gone to to make the Europa League.
“But this is a European level club in terms of solidity, organisation, facilities and men; with a crowd which never abandons you.
“The fans fire us up like crazy, and at the stadium you can breathe the passion.”
Gomez was also full of praise for the Percassi family, who own Atalanta.
“The president, Antonio and the managing director, his son Luca: there was not a moment when they lost their trust in us and in [Coach Gian Piero Gasperini.
“Also - and especially - when we dropped into the relegation zone after a run of defeats. The directors’ attitude in the most critical moments was decisive.
“The team recharged and won four matches in a row - we were reborn.
“The Percassi family are very serious people, Atalanta reflects their image and their projects.
“The work on the new stadium will begin at the end of the season, I’ve seen the project and it’ll be a fabulous stadium.
“That’s good for us because the stadiums are the first problem for Italian football.
“Thanks to the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo it’s the centre of attention again. Cristiano does a lot of good for the whole of Serie A, and I’m sure other champions will arrive too but too many stadiums are not up to the needs.
“In that respect too Bergamo will become a happy exception. My wife and I have bought a house here, and when I stop playing I think we’ll keep living here.”
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