Stefano Pioli talked to the media following the hard-fought loss to Atalanta. He acknowledged that Milan could have performed much better, but there were some encouraging aspects as well. In addition, he gave Rafael Leao an update.
Even though Milan rallied twice to tie the game, they were unable to secure a point against the Bergamo team. After Davide Calabria was sent off minutes earlier, Luis Muriel scored the game’s winning goal with a fantastic backheel in the 95th minute, leading 3-2.
According to MilanNews, Pioli discussed what went wrong for the Rossoneri this evening in an interview with DAZN. Rafael Leao, who is expected to return for the Champions League match against Newcastle, was also updated by him.
When we had numerical parity, momentum appeared to be on our side, but then we faced difficulties due to our numerical inferiority. We must exercise greater objectivity because some of our mistakes have cost us dearly.
Regarding the performance…
“We weren’t prepared and cautious enough with Atalanta’s substitutions, which indicates that the team hasn’t performed well in the defensive phase when we concede three goals. We played with a certain quality, intensity, and energy during the two restarts of the match. This is a serious loss, but at least we should have returned home with a win.
Would a number of absences serve as an alibi?
Despite the absences, the game was played. We played better than our opponents, in my opinion, especially in the first half, but we were unable to score. We made some mistakes in the second half that cost us, and we will need to learn from them going forward.
The team’s momentum was restored in the second half by Jovic and Bennacer.
“A 2-2 result would have resulted in a lot of good things. Our match had a lot of good things about it. However, we firmly believed that a different outcome was possible, so we had to conduct a thorough assessment. Indeed, we were present during the match. Regretfully, we were outperformed by our opponents in the penalty area, and these are circumstances that we need to improve quickly.
Giroud and Jovic together…
They seem to be able to play together. However, if they cooperate, we’ll need to switch up the midfield and possibly even the wingers. We’ll see now, but it seems obvious that we have a crucial match in Europe. We only have one outcome available, but we want to stay in Europe despite the slim chance we have. I apologize; this is not the outcome we were hoping for. We will return to the league with even greater attention after we finish the Champions League.
On the table of leagues…
“We desired consistency and a run of wins in an attempt to get closer to the top. It’s obvious that you need to look behind you if you fail. I refuse to alter.
We desired consistency and a run of wins in an attempt to get closer to the top. It’s obvious that you need to look behind you if you fail. I’m not going to change my mind about our goals; we want to place in the top four, but we also want to accomplish more. We need to improve on a lot of things right now before considering the standings. We now have a lot of games to win to consider.
Is Leao going to be back for the Champions League?
Not only do we need to qualify, but if we win, we will definitely stay in Europe. Leao trained well today, so he should be alright. He should be well enough to play when he rejoins the team tomorrow, but these next few days are crucial.
How do you respond to frequently being questioned?
This is how it is. As Milan’s coach, I have very high expectations. As of right now, the outcomes do not match the goals. I have no choice but to focus on my work and make things better for my players by providing them with better direction. All I can do is that.”
Milan will take on Newcastle in the final UCL group stage clash on Wednesday, and it’s not looking bright for the Rossoneri. A win won’t be enough to secure a spot in the Round of 16, as the already-qualified Borussia Dortmund also need to beat PSG.