Gattuso: “I have to thank this group, I didn’t invent Çalhanoğlu but I re-found him, we lack physicality and experience”

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Gennaro Gattuso thanking the fans at the end of Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)
Gennaro Gattuso thanking the fans at the end of Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)

Gennaro Gattuso was happy to finish the season in 6th place but refused to take credit and claimed that Milan will be in the summer market for a winger and midfielder who have experience but don’t have to be over 30 years of age.

Milan ended the season in the best way possible, as they smashed Fiorentina 5-1 on Sunday evening to finish the campaign in 6th place and secure a place in next season’s Europa League group stage.

From the first minute it was clear that Milan came ready and hungry, but it was the Viola who got on the scoresheet first as against the run of play, they managed to get the ball to Giovanni Simeone who beat Donnarumma after 20 minutes.

The Rossoneri, however, got back in the game very quickly as in the 23′ minute, Hakan Çalhanoğlu (finally) scored from a free kick, equalizing the match. The Turkish was on absolute fire yesterday and in the 41′ minute he assisted Patrick Cutrone’s goal, which overturned the result.

Milan players thanking the fans at the end of Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)
Milan players thanking the fans at the end of Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)

Four minutes into the second half, Çalhanoğlu and Cutrone were again at the heart of things and Hakan’s cross found the head of Patrick, who couldn’t beat the goalkeeper; but Nikola Kalinić was in the right place to take advantage of the rebound ball and scored against his former side. In the 59′ minute, Çalhanoğlu found Cutrone in the box again and the 20-year-old scored his 10th seasonal Serie A goal. In the 76′ minute, Hakan gave the ball to Jack Bonaventura and the former Atalanta man made an incredible run which ended in a goal. Milan could’ve scored more but it ended 5-1.

The boys of Gennaro Gattuso finished a very complicated season on a high and now preparations can begin as next year the goal will be to return to the Champions League.

Ricardo Rodriguez and Hakan Çalhanoğlu celebrating during Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)
Ricardo Rodriguez and Hakan Çalhanoğlu celebrating during Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)

“I have to thank this group, there were very difficult moments, but I found guys that gave me a great sense of belonging,” Gattuso told Sky Italia after the final whistle of referee Michael Fabbri. “I was a pain in the neck for 5 months, but nobody failed to give respect, this was my fortunate. We proposed things but without the commitment it would’ve been useless. I have to say thanks to them.

“What is missing for the Champions League? We must learn to play with physicality, we’re lacking a bit of malice, a bit of experience… it doesn’t have to be players aged 30 [that will arrive in the summer], but young players that have many games on their shoulders. The backbone of the team is there, we have to reinforce it, also with what we can do with the players that we have.

“My work as a coach? I started 4-5 years ago, the road is still long, I have a lot to learn but I have passion and when it’s there then it only takes luck and work.”

Patrick Cutrone, Leonardo Bonucci and Ricardo Rodriguez celebrating during Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)
Patrick Cutrone, Leonardo Bonucci and Ricardo Rodriguez celebrating during Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)

Speaking in the post-match presser, Rino said: “Next season? We’ll start again from the enthusiasm and the good things we did this year. We’ll start again from the bedrocks. In both the previous management [of Montella], but I’ll speak about mine, there were some moments which weren’t easy.

“It’s also my merit and that of my staff, but it’s especially the merit of the players, who have always respected and accepted what we proposed. The merits are 90% of the boys. Someone could’ve invented any excuse to give up and instead it didn’t happen.

“What vote would I give myself? It’s hard to say, I’ve got some beatings in these 5 years [of Gattuso’s coaching career] and did just a little something good. The experience of the 5 months with the Primavera served me. We started with many difficulties, with 8 goals conceded in the first two matches. If I’d give myself a 7? I’d be satisfied with 6.5, I never got it at school…

Marco Storari, Patrick Cutrone, Ignazio Abate, Giacomo Bonaventura, Alessio Romagnoli and Nikola Kalinić celebrating during Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)
Marco Storari, Patrick Cutrone, Ignazio Abate, Giacomo Bonaventura, Alessio Romagnoli and Nikola Kalinić celebrating during Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)

“Kessié was a bit tired? This was his 52th match if I’m not mistaken, it’s normal to be tired. We don’t have any alternative. Surely, we need another midfielder to give us a hand and another winger with the characteristics of Çalhanoğlu and Suso, players to rotate the group. If I speak of experience, then we also talk of 24-25-year-olds with 200 games, we don’t necessarily need players who are over 30, we are not in the Champions League, we need players of perspective but not necessarily 30-year-olds.

“Cutrone finished the season in double figures? He knows what I think about him and what I want from him. He has great room for improvement and in the last two months he’s made me less angry. I also want to stress the performance of Kalinić, he played the last two games like a true player.

“Çalhanoğlu [who was the Man of the Match]? I like him more and more. He’s an atypical number 10, he plays with the knife between his teeth. I don’t know if I taught him but I’m excited to play him. He has large margins for improvements. We hope that he won’t think he’s Brad Pitt and that he’ll have the desire that he had in these months. He must not forget where he started, I found a boy with great difficult on the physical and psychological levels. I didn’t invent him, I re-found him.”

Patrick Cutrone and Hakan Çalhanoğlu celebrating during Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)
Patrick Cutrone and Hakan Çalhanoğlu celebrating during Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)

Gattuso also had an interview with MilanTV: “I don’t want to take any credit. Actually, I would like to thank those who brought me here because, for the way I started my career, this is incredible. Mirabelli changed my life, my world, those months I coached the Primavera were very important and opened a new world to me. I won’t take a break now. I need to start planning next season. Earlier on Sunday, I met Fassone and Mirabelli. We have little things to do but we need to do them right.

“Çalhanoğlu’s? He must not forget the first day he came into my office, he was on the ground in every sense. In moments in which he thinks he is the best in the world, he must not forget those times. It takes to continue working, because you can see that with work there are these results.

“Primavera players? The Primavera squad has improved a lot, if I look at [Frank] Tsadjout now and I think about how he was 10 months ago, he seems like a different person. But everyone else, like [Raoul] Bellanova, Tiago Dias, [Marco] Brescianini and all the others are grown up, then you have to put them in a position and let them get into the rhythms of the first team.

Milan players thanking the fans at the end of Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)
Milan players thanking the fans at the end of Milan-Fiorentina at Stadio San Siro on May 20, 2018. (@acmilan.com)

“When you wear a Milan shirt, you have to understand what you’re wearing. Milan, along with Real Madrid, has an incredible charm in the world and we must not forget it. Those who wear this shirt must remember it and sweat Now we have interesting youngsters, we hope to strengthen because this shirt has written the history. And I always say to my players, because I really think that: when you face your opponents, they must be envious of us because we are Milan.”

Gattuso, who always had a concerned look on his face during the matches, can now finally rest and start thinking about the future of his Milan. He’ll be able to work calmly, with no EL preliminaries.

15 COMMENTS

  1. One day after and theres crazy talks of who we’re linked with. Up front four names so far ive heard. Immobile morata mandzukic benzema. While also stating silva and kalinic are most likely to leave. Hopefully silva has an awesome world cup so either we keep him with confidence or we sell him for a lot. Out of those strikers i would like any.

    For wingers we need an alternative to what we have now and for midfielders we need someone whos a champion and brings lots of experience. Would be nice to get somebody like vidal iniesta or modric but thats unlikely.

    Defence need to keep the same plus we’ll have conti back. Maybe another left back as antonelli may leave. For goalie whether donnarumma stays or leaves we have plizzari and reina. Its good they say donnarumma isnt for sale but if he wants to go teams better pay up the 70m asking price. Dont let him go for cheap

  2. well said rhino but pls next season play with two strikers even kalinic seems to be useful with another striker by his side

  3. Milan finished this year on +1 in comparison to last season. Taking into account that Montella brought us on the verge if relegation zone beginning 17/18 I must say Gattuso did more then I expected when he was appointed

    Last reports suggest Gattuso likes Jordan Veretout, midfielder from Fiorentina. Can anyone give me some heads up on the guy?

    • Not bad at all. Not a great player yet but he shoots, scores free kicks, defends drives forward etc. You could expect him to perform just a notch higher than Bonaventura

    • That is the guy we need a technically gifted Kucka, strong fast better at long passes than biglia and bonucci, he would give our midfield some balance and take a lot of pressure of Loca allowing him to develop as a classy regista.

      Fiorentina might ask us 20m and considering he is a box to box that scored 8 times at 25yo it might worth the gamble.

  4. Offtopic: Icardi and Dybala aren’t among the 23-man squad for the World Cup.
    IDK but this just makes me soooo happy, mostly because Icardi, I guess he can spend more time with Wanda 😀

  5. Please Fasonne. get us Depay. This guy is good and he is still young. We need two solid wingers two solid mildfielders and a striker…. The two wingers must be pacy. This is important. One of the mildfielders should also be pacy.

  6. Well done Rino and thanks for this great work, you are indeed a great warrior and true Rossonero.

    I hope Mirabelli gets you your desired players that would make your works easier for you next season as you helped saved his job grabbing the 6th place.

    All the best Rino and once again thank you.

  7. Only one chance this summer too improve. Bad purchases will lead to problems that Milan cannot come out of it

  8. Personally, we actually need 2 midfielders, 2 wingers & a striker.
    Without spending much, we can get Depay from Lyon for (€25m-€35m) & Benard from shaktadonesk for free to give Suso some time off.
    I read we are already 80% certain to get Felaini for free & Jordan veretout from Florentina will be a steal if we can get him between €15m-€20m, he’s everything Bonaventura ever wanted to be. A team squad player, free kick & penalty kick specialist, long & short range ball passer with an eye for goal. Belloti for the striking position & we are good. Squad depth keeps giving Juventus the Scudeto, we could use the same…..

    • With all the attention depay is getting in this market I’m sorry 25-35 mil is super low and unrealistic if multiple teams are fighting for his signature. Depends if Lyon play hardball. I see him going for 40-50 mil, who knows, but unfortunately I don’t see him coming to milan.

  9. I admire u as champion player and even more as human being but the truth is its u who lacks experience rino. Milan dont play like a well prepared team in most matches i saw this season and thats on u. Sorry to say but this season milan were the most boring team among top 6 of europe’s top 4 leagues. Hell, sometimes i saw better football from ligue 1 and eredivisie.
    In a perfect world, real coach with real pedigree like conte would arrive and rino would act as his assistant to learn directly from him so he could take over when he’s already a much better coach ready for big club like milan, like zidane in madrid or mou in barca but seeing as how the only purpose of fassobelli is to sabotage milan then i cant see it happening soon. Infamia

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