Andrea Conti’s agent has said the decision to leave the player out of the Europa League squad is understood.
Nearly a year ago, Conti suffered and ACL injury in training and since then he has undergone two knee surgeries.
The 24-year-old, who arrived from Atalanta last summer, is still on his way to recovery and next month is likely to be the month of his return.
“Andrea’s fine, he just needs a bit more time to get back to peak fitness,” Conti’s agent, Mario Giuffredi, told Calciomercato.com on Tuesday. “Unfortunately he’s coming back from two very bad injuries, so he needs a few more weeks. We don’t want to force him back early, but I believe that by mid-October or towards the end of the month he’ll be fully available again.
“The exclusion from the Europa League squad? Andrea’s a very intelligent lad, he’s taken it with his usual professionalism. I had imagined that Milan would make this decision because the dates of his return would coincide with the last two group games. Why exclude a player who can perhaps give more at this time? I believe the decision was correct and it was shared by us too.
“The scenes of Conti celebrating with the team at San Siro tell a lot of his importance inside the locker room? It’s normal that it’s like this. Andrea suffers and rejoices with the Milan team to which he owes so much. It doesn’t take much to love and accept someone with his characteristics. His only desire now is to repay all the affection he has received from fans, teammates and from the club in recent months. He wants to prove that he’s a player ‘da Milan’.
“The national team? He already played for the Azzurri and he can fight for a place in this group. I believe that he has all the qualities to come back. Mancini has shown particular attention to this type of players [there are currently 4 Milan players in the squad of Italy for this week’s games].
“If I had the chance to talk with the new Milan management of Maldini and Leonardo? We talked as part of the operation for Gabriel [whose contract was rescinded and he then joined Perugia]. Also on the telephone I spoke several times with Leonardo. I also had the pleasure of meeting a great person like Maldini. What impression did they make? That of two people of great depth, with important skills that can be fundamental to bring Milan back to where it belongs to be.
“It was a real pleasure for me and I hope to build a good relationship with them for the future.”