Milan-Genoa, the Pioli press conference

The coach on the eve of Milan-Genoa: “If you stay in front of everyone for a long time, luckily that doesn’t happen. You have to go from competition to victory.” Rebic and Bennacer recovered

From our correspondent Marco Pasotto

Logic dictated putting the classic hay on the farm when it was objectively within reach (Bologna, Toro and now Genoa), and not having to do it when the difficulty coefficient skyrocketed (Lazio, Fiorentina ). But this Milan is a strange and unpredictable organism, for better or for worse: the same team capable of overthrowing the competitors for the title is also the one capable of tightening only two points against opponents whose championship is already virtually archived. Anyone who understands something is good, and Pioli has done a lot to figure it out in two and a half years. Obviously the last step is missing, on the part of the players and on his part. A concept that the coach often talks about: “Knowing where we were starting from, we were really very smart. But now, we are missing the last step”.

Area to fill

Milan still has time to climb it, provided they immediately get rid of the ballast of recent times. You have to give meaning to the maneuver and to a game that always continues to flow. But that does not become a goal. The most pressing problem is this (four goals in the last six of the Championship), fortunately softened by a very well protected goal (the Devil come out of five clean sheets in a row). “If we don’t concede a goal it’s because the whole team is working very well in the defensive phase, and in the same way if we don’t score much we must not only watch the attack but the whole team”, explains Pioli. Intuition, marking, precision: the Rossoneri coach uses different terms to say what is missing upstream. “In recent games, there has been no problem filling the opponent’s box. On the contrary, you have to be good not to fill it too early otherwise it becomes striking. The excellent defensive phase must simply be accompanied of a more precise and effective realization phase”.

difficult choice

Pioli vigorously defends a team which, whatever their end, have never gone below second place so far. “Seeing the glass half empty now is very difficult for me. In my opinion, we are playing well, even if in the end the judgments are only based on the results, as it should be. Two points more than in the last championship confirm that after difficult years we are becoming a competitive team again. The last step is missing to go from competition to victory, a last effort to make all together. It is right to believe in it until the end because we are strong. If you stay in front of everyone for a long time it doesn’t happen by chance. Just like if you don’t win two games in a row it doesn’t happen by bad luck.” Tomorrow, before the 65,000 at San Siro (new great response from the supporters after the 68,000 with Bologna), Pioli will recover Bennacer and Rebic, but the coach also underlines another aspect: “At the moment the absences of Florenzi, Kjaer and Les Ibra are important because they know how these moments are lived thanks to their experience”. And he reflects on Ibra’s future as follows: “I don’t think anything has changed for him after the latest problems, but Zlatan has the intelligence and the courage to make the best choice. And we will be with him. whatever the choice.” .


The team, in short, in these last matches will have to draw on everything that Ibra has transmitted in the last two years. This is the work that Zlatan has done over the weeks and Pioli explains how he saw the players after the draw in Turin: “I found men who are convinced that they have worked well all year. , because they do it with confidence. If we are still fighting for the Scudetto and the Coppa Italia means that everyone has given their best. But we still need the extra effort. We have the quality to score a lot of points by the end of the championship. The fans are with us and will be until the end”.


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