19 October 2019
The Coach's words on the eve of AC Milan v Lecce: "The team have potential that needs to be unleashed"
We are one day away from our new Coach's debut. On matchday eight of Serie A, Stefano Pioli will be in the AC Milan dugout for the first time to take charge of AC Milan v Lecce. At Milanello, the Coach held a press conference to discuss the upcoming match at San Siro prior to the team adding the finishing touches to their preparations. The Coach’s thoughts were broadcast live on the AC Milan Official App, Facebook and Milan TV.
"Lecce will be a difficult opponent to face, they have six points and all of these came away from home. They’re a well-trained team and know each other very well. We need to put in a great performance. We also need to approach the game in an excellent manner. Furthermore, we need to be compact and cohesive and be as organised and intense as possible. It’s my birthday tomorrow and I want my present to be a win."
"My players shouldn’t worry about being perfect, it’ll be impossible to be perfectly organised tomorrow but I expect us to show a lot of desire and be very attentive. I haven’t spoken about what has worked or hasn’t worked in the past with any player, I’m interested in the present. I expect a lot because I have quality players at my disposal. Tomorrow, I’ll get to understand better the technical and physical qualities that each of them possesses. I’ll play the best team to win the game tomorrow, it’ll be important not to get the starting line-up wrong. Up to now, the players have been giving me everything. We’re balancing the workload so we can get in the right shape from both a physical and mental point of view. Everyone is feeling fine and everyone expects to play, the attitude is right and should always be this way. I’ve joined a good changing room with players who are attentive, curious and willing."
"The environment at Milanello has amazed me, here there are people who have AC Milan in their hearts. I feel like I’ve been representing the Rossoneri colours for a long time. I’m sure that we can do a good job. For me, football consists of ideas, of choices to be made, of intensity when playing. We’re working on all of this. No pre-game training camp? Retreats aren’t what they used to be, they’re no longer necessary in my opinion. This is a way of empowering the players, who must always behave like professionals and prepare for games in the best possible way."
"I’m at a prestigious club with a great history, it’s a great honour and source of pride to be here. If you coach AC Milan, playing at San Siro should not be a concern but rather a further source of motivation. I feel that I’m a coach who’s sufficiently prepared to work at this level. In the years gone by I have learnt a lot, especially from my negative experiences. Those experiences have improved me both as a coach and as a person. I feel very mature. There have absolutely been discussions with the management. I’ve always thought that at a big club competence, sharing and collaboration make the difference, as well as respect for the rules. The level is very high here."
"More than 50,000 fans will be present at San Siro tomorrow, it’s a demonstration of passion, affection and warmth. We need to do well for their sake, as well as for the sake of the Club and all of us. We’re not happy with our position in the table, we need give our all tomorrow. We are AC Milan, we have qualities and we need to show them."
"Piątek to start? Usually when we play in the evening, I announce the line-up in the morning. Today is going to be decisive in deciding who will start the match. I have a lot of confidence in Krzysztof. I think that Leão is more of a striker, more of a front-man. To play out wide he will have to grow and become more accomplished. He has great potential qualities, but he can benefit us right now. Çalhanoğlu I see as being at his best in the attacking phase, where he can trouble the opponent’s defence with his movements and his skill. Paquetá has quality and is good at getting behind defenders, he has the right characteristics to be a complete midfielder and to be effective in both phases of the game. Along with Biglia, I’ve also coached Rebić, even if only for a short period of time: he’s got character, I’ve seen him grow because now he’s more clinical."
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<p>The Coach and defender shared their impressions following the win</p>
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