"Sometimes out of bad comes good," he said.
"You can imagine what the dressing room was like after the Benfica game last year.
"Our pride was terribly hurt because our form in European football in previous seasons had been fantastic.
"There was a question mark over how we would get over it and what our next step would be because the great test for any footballer is to recover from the devastation of defeat.
"In fairness to the team they did respond positively and went on a run to the end of the season that was more consistent than any team in the country and we have managed to continue that."
"I know we will do it," he said.
"But why do my players take us all right to the edge so often?
"It is as if the make-up of the club has a built-in requirement to take the difficult route.
"When you look at the history of our club, we tend to keep our supporters on a knife-edge. It seems like there is a certain enjoyment in it."