February 20, 2024

Pioli on the eve of Atalanta-Milan: “Difficult game”. Leao from the squad


The Rossoneri challenge the goddess in Bergamo: “We have to find a continuity of results. Kjaer is doing better, but he still has to find his fitness again.” Leao is not going

By our correspondent Francesco Pietrella

– Minello (leaves)

Stefano Pioli does not feel like the “villain of the story,” but neither does he feel like the deus ex machina of Milan, the hero of the situation, this time without a mask. At the end of the conference there were some who dusted off Batman, particularly the line from “The Dark Knight” that says: “Either you die a hero, or you live long enough to become a villain.” Pioli smiled, repeated, that he liked the character and then focused on the responsibilities. “I don’t feel like a scapegoat, a superhero or a victim. I coach Milan, so I have duties and honors. I have to think about the well-being of the team. And so tomorrow he will go to Bergamo to play against Atalanta. At the helm, as usual, is Gian Piero Gasperini, the most challenged coach of his career: “Since the youth teams of Bologna and Juve in the Primavera, we have challenged each other. More than twenty years ago. I wouldn't steal anything from him because everyone has their own ideas, but I respect him a lot.

leao out

Atalanta has always been an important node in Pioli's history. “Difficult games, they will fight for a place in the Champions League like us until the end.” There is one opponent to keep an eye on: Charles De Ketelaere: “I'm following him a lot, he plays a more attacking role and has well started. He had to understand certain situations, he is a player with perspective, he has to be carefully watched. After all, nothing can be done for Leao. The Portuguese has not yet recovered from his injury and will not play. As well as Kjaer and Okafor, also in the pits.


The return of Bennacer, who played a few minutes against Frosinone, was fundamental: “He needs some time. Absences are always an opportunity to prove our worth. As for Ismail, I can say that he has made an incredible recovery with great consistency. We assume that he is 100% fit and will be in the starting line-up soon.” Pioli also spoke about Jovic, who scored a goal in the last game. “He has talent and quality, but he needs to work on his intensity. He needs this last step to become a top player.” One of those who, like Rade Krunic, usually always plays, even if the Bosnian had more problems in the last section: “The problem is the condition. He has always played well, but now he has experienced a decline. There are teammates who are better than him. Finally, Pioli talks about his ambitions. “The minimum goal is fourth place, but we can achieve even more. The football we play has deep roots and a certain knowledge. We have to be competitive with our ideas in Europe and in Serie A.”

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