Montella: “I thank Galliani & Berlusconi for the opportunity to coach Milan, My future? My priority is the derby”

Vincenzo Montella during Milan-Genoa at Stadio San Siro on the 18th of March 2017. (MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP/Getty Images)
Vincenzo Montella during Milan-Genoa at Stadio San Siro on the 18th of March 2017. (MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP/Getty Images)

Vincenzo Montella is confident ‘the new owners have the desire, the resources and the intention to take Milan back to its natural habitat’, and insists his focus is on Saturday’s Derby della Madonnina.

April 13, 2017 is an historic day for Milan as today Silvio Berlusconi officially sold his entire stack to the Chinese, leaving the Rossoneri after 31 years & 29 trophies.

The last of those trophies was won in last December when Vincenzo Montella’s Milan beat Juventus in Doha for the Supercoppa Italiana. Now the era of the Chinese begins, and it starts with a Derby match on Saturday (12:30 CET kickoff!) against Inter.

“If you’ll allow me, I’d like to start myself this time,” Montella told journalists at Milanello on Thursday afternoon at the start of the pre-match press conference. “I’m very emotional, today is an epochal day. I was informed of this change of ownership by Mr. Galliani and Mr. Fassone. I want to thank Galliani and Mr. Berlusconi for the opportunity to coach Milan. I think I’ve got a small part of Milan history, along with the players, with the trophy [the Supercoppa] we won.

“I think that in recent months my work has been separating what happens on the pitch with the things off it and I believe that we succeeded in that. In the coming days I’ll definitely meet the new ownership and together I’m sure we can find solutions to make Milan as glorious as in the past. I’d really liked to talk about the derby, I don’t want to spend more energy on this epochal transition.

“How to keep the team away from the club’s issues? If I had to choose the best timing for the change of ownership then I would’ve chosen it to be before the derby or a match against Juventus. I’m convinced that on Saturday the boys will further demonstrate their seriousness.

Galliani and Montella during training at Milanello (
Galliani and Montella during training at Milanello (

“What I expect for the future? The sale was yet another act of love from Prime Minister Berlusconi. I’m sure the new owners have the desire, the resources and the intention to take Milan back to its natural habitat. If I’m open to staying? Yes, I’m happy here, but marriages are between two.

“Now we’re missing a little to know. It’s not my priority though, my priority is the derby. It’s simple, I have a contract with Milan and I’m happy to coach Milan. There will be rumours in this period of transition. But I need to talk with the people, it’s that simple. Will I still be here in July? I don’t want to answer, even curiosity must be set aside right now. But I think you’ll know soon.

“If I’ve learned Chinese? Not yet [smiles]. My relationship with Berlusconi? Among the many phone calls with Berlusconi I’ve always felt great respect and great incentive to improve and I’ve always accepted [what he said]. He’s been very emotionally involved in this sale and in politics.

“I’d have liked to have known him better. I think the President esteems and respects me, the same goes the other way and to that I’d also add admiration for what he’s done for Milan. If I would’ve preferred going through the season with a ‘closing’? I think it was a valuable experience.

The team during training at Milanello (
The team during training at Milanello (

“The derby? We’re facing a team with great players. The match will be played emotionally, we can’t approach it with fear, we need to play freely and to win, to put Inter further away from us. It’ll definitely be very similar to the first match, the quality and the atmosphere will be at a high level.

“A win for Europe? A win would increase the percentage chances for us, if definitely wouldn’t secure qualification but it would put us in a good position. The XI? I have a draft but the many is in two days so I haven’t decided yet. There are variables to be evaluated day by day.

“Inter have very technical and fast players with skills in one against one, especially on the wings with Candreva and Perisic, when the winger doesn’t play with the inverted foot usually there’s a cross. Their fullbacks push up very well. Icardi? He’s a very strong player, I think he’s learning this year to be participate in the game more. Gagliardini? Watching Inter, they’ve found a rhythm with Gagliardini.

“Roberto has great physicality and he’s very skilled in his insertions. Deulofeu and Bonaventura? With Gerard we have something more in the one on one. The absence of Pasalic? He’s a player who’s growing a lot. I don’t like talking about those absent, I like to talk about those who will be in the game. If we’re favourites after Inter’s defeat at Crotone? No, the derby resets everything.

“I don’t think a possible defeat would cut Inter off, nor would it for us. It’s all recoverable, and Inter have a lot of head-to-head matches. I think we’ll need to be a more of a team than in other matches, a team that is ready tactically and technically. What the first-round match taught us [Milan conceded in the very last moment of the game]? That we’ve to be attentive for 95 minutes. We’re a bit missing those two points that we could’ve taken home but congrats to Inter who believed until the end.

Vincenzo Montella during training at Milanello (
Vincenzo Montella during training at Milanello (

“It will be a great spectacle and it will be seen by nearly a billion people around the world. The fans?  I expect a good luck to the new owners [from the fans] and support for the new management. The support of our fans is always a boost for us and I’m sure it’ll be the same on Saturday.”

Montella has one more training session tomorrow to make up his mind. His doubts are regarding Alessio Romagnoli’s partner in defense and the third midfielder with Kucka and Jose Sosa.


  1. In my opinion, Montella should definitely carry on working on what he has started building this season. For me, the owners will need to start with the confirmation of Montella, and the contract extensions of Donnarumma, Romagnoli, Bonaventura, De Sciglio and Suso, and then of course for them to stay this summer. Then they will have gotten off to a good start and earn my trust.
    Montella has my full support in this moment of time, and I think he is the right person for us during this transitional period.
    Keep it up, forza Montella, and always – Forza Milan!

  2. I have to say that I am worried about the club’s future. Although it has been run poorly over the last few years, at least there was never any doubt whatsoever that the wages and bills would be paid. I don’t think the Chinese offer any such guarantees. Having struggled so badly to put the money together to buy the club, you have to wonder how they are going to fund running it, especially given it cost Berlusconi something like £80 million each year. The initial impression of the Chinese is this regard is not good.

    What makes the issue worse is the secrecy around identities and that fact no one in China has ever heard of these guys. As a Rangers supporter I know first hand what happens when charlatans take over a great club, and it isn’t pretty. What happened to Parma should also serve as a warning.

  3. People seem to forget that the only reason they had trouble funding the deal was because China wouldn’t let them export that amount of money out of the country. So they had to start the company in Luxemburg. If China gave them the thumbs up the deal would have gone through a long time ago. They have the financial power . Don’t worry

  4. MADE IN CHINA, finally!!!

    Guys, count the days now.. you will be gone one by one.. milan is under construction now. Go and support another team where the management enjoys sabotaging their own club and have their fans to support that. Your days with milan is OVER.

    You were ENJOYING milan being poor, you were over the moon for this situation. Now, there is no galliani, which means no more bonaventura signings.. i hope this will mean that all you low-life fans will be out of here. You galliani supporters, you bonaventura supporters, you milan sabotage supporters will leave with B & G

    Milan will now grow, milan will now start doing things, which you all were AGIANST. I hope i never see you more, the biggest enemy of milan was their fans.

    LET THE SHOW BEGIN, FORZA MILAN, FORZA NO MORE BONAVENTURA SIGNINGS (which automaticly means no more zapata, essien, muntari, flamini, poli, destro, silvestre, zaccardo, agazzi, poli, bertolacci, mati, matri, etc signings)

    • Unfortunately, you won’t be able to see us go “one by one” because I’m “counting the days” until your dumba$$ won’t be on this blog anymore thanks to that deal you made because montella will be here for the rest of the season and most likely longer.

  5. Once we have Nederlands trio, now why not spanish trio? Lock deulofeu and suso and we have two deadly, highly potential wings who understand each other… Get Fabregas so the big hole in the midfield will be filled. He would offer a champion menatlity and leadership to our youngsters and he will be the one who the other player can count on = team’s confidence is going up. And of course my favourite striker: BELOTTI!!! It will be a hell combination between spanish and Italy’s talents with some senior star…

  6. When the Qataris bought PSG so many people said it was a waste that they would destroy the Club because they can’t keep up and so on…and no good players would join the League 1, Now we all can see what PSG become now in Europe. Same goes for Manchester City, Chelsea. The only reason there were all the delays and makeup dramas was because the Chinese government suddenly stopped allowing big funds to leave the country to go overseas and that’s why Berlusconi stayed calm and patient. I don’t understand why people in here and there are complaining about the sale while Berlusconi himself wanted it to go through long time ago because he said he cannot invest money in the club anymore. It was the best decisions to make instead of trying for years to keep Milan while you can’t buy any quality players. You all seem to forget that lately AC Milan has been outbid by any second-tier team in Premier League on players. It’s sad to see players chose any other team in England over Milan because we can’t challenge them with money. It’s too early to start blasting the new owners. I am not saying they have the solution to our longtime problems but we have to wait after this season is over to see what their plan is for the Club and what they will announce to the fans before we can spread your negativity by blasting them!

    • The Qataris who bought PSG are very prominent people with a well documented fortune. That isn’t the case with our new Chinese owners.

  7. Like @milanista121 said, the first step is the crucial renewals to put some hope on the fans and try to improve the squad in summer with Montella still our coach.

  8. Hope Milan would be a great force in world football again, thanks to Mr berlusconi and his family over the years for making Milan what is today, as for the new owners welcome to the great family of acmilan football club!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here