Allegri on Milan youngsters, tactics, Balotelli and more…

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MASSIMILIANO ALLEGRI believes Milan are more of a team, and has claimed that Milan will keep playing the same way.

Milan take on Galaxy tonight (in the night between Wednesday and Thursday – 00:30) and it will be their last game before the UEFA Champions League playoffs (Milan will learn who their opponent is on Friday – when the draw takes place).

Milan’s pre-season was affected by many injuries but they are expected to have most of the injured players in time for August 21st. Massimiliano Allegri has fielded many youngsters this pre-season and he says Milan are better than last year.

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“It’s stimulating to train youngsters because they have hunger and desire to win. A 20-year old can have recklessness and the craziness to try something that you wouldn’t do if you thought it through first,” boss Massimiliano Allegri told La Gazzetta dello Sport. “My decision to stay at Milan? I trust my instinct. It has gone wrong those times when I have not followed it.

“Galliani, the president and I spoke, and we decided to continue together. This is a new challenge for me. My squad? I have a squad of quality youngsters, and we now have the advantage of having played together for a year. We didn’t have that last year. I think that Serie A will be more well-balanced this season, and there’s a big distance between the 6-7 teams and the rest. However, Juventus have won the last two seasons, and they have signed good players, so they are the favorites.

“We were the favorites after we won the Scudetto in 2011. Juventus have worked well and they have beaten us. Those who win are the favorites – that’s how it works. I’m always calm. It’s just that Juventus have taken a couple of my jokes a bit too seriously. There is someone who should take a course in humor. I’m fortunate enough to come from Livorno, so humor is a natural thing for me. How my relationship with Conte and Mazzarri is? I respect everyone. But character is one thing and professionalism is something else. Conte has done an excellent job. Mazzarri is a good coach, and he will do well at Inter.

“As for myself, we seem to have more of a team now than we did a year ago. We will have Balotelli with us from the start this season, and he was the best signing in 2013. And I have faith in CEO Galliani. He always makes good signings at the end of the transfer window. The fact that other teams have changed more than Milan have? But we have improved as a team.

Massimiliano Allegri’s interview (screenshot from La Gazzetta dello Sport)

“The youngsters have grown; if they improve their individual qualities then our play will also improve. If I field a youngster then it’s not because he’s young and that I have to field him. If I choose him then it’s because he’s a good player. Which players to keep an eye on this season? Petagna and Cristante have started the season well with the first team. Cristante did better in the beginning, and now Petagna is doing better. But you need to have balance when it comes to youngsters; you must not overhype them when they perform well, and you must not criticise them heavily when they make mistakes.

“El Shaarawy didn’t get to play in many matches in his first season at Milan, and then he played 28 matches the following season. The youngsters that we have must grow, but they have qualities. I’m curious to see Gabriel and Vergara will do. If I’m worried? Apart from the first 35 minutes against Manchester City, I think that our pre-season has been good. As for Inter, they have changed the way that they work. Mazzarri will have time to make progress: they will only play once a week this season, and that’s an advantage for a new team. If there’s still a big gap between Milan and the best European teams? I don’t know if the gap is bigger than it was a year ago, but Real Madrid, Barça and Bayern Munich are a level above us.

“Anything can happen in the Champions League; Manchester United, City, PSG and BvB are also there, but it’s very difficult to see the three big clubs failing. Milan were courageous enough to close a cycle and make a change. After Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva were sold last year, it seemed like it would be a tragic season, but we managed to finish third and qualify for the Champions League play-offs. The ideal thing is to always finish in top 3 and make the youngsters improve.

“How Mario Balotelli is behaving with the youngest players? He’s behaving well. Deep down inside, he’s still a kid. He’s also a well-mannered person, but he’s only 23 so he must be treated like a 23-year old, who has to improve in many aspects. Mario knows what he has to do. I talked with him for a long time, and he knows that he’s the most important player in the squad, and the best one technically. Mario must take his responsibilities, and he must become our technical leader.

“Balotelli can’t be our psychological leader because he’s a timid person. If it’s better to coach Ibrahimovic or Balotelli? I’ve been fortunate enough to coach both of them. Ibra was stratospheric in his first four months at Milan. He won the matches all by himself. And then he was the usual great Ibra for a year and a half, but his first months at Milan were incredible.

“Balotelli is different – also technically. Ibra is more of a passer, while Balotelli is more of a dribbler. But Balotelli has an indescribable potential, and he still has to improve a lot. Balotelli’s mother said that Balo cried when Mourinho coached him? He was five years younger than he is now when he worked with Mourinho. He definitely doesn’t cry when he’s with me.

“If I gave Mourinho a fine for wearing a tracksuit? I was only joking in that interview with GQ. It’s summer and we’re only playing friendly matches now. In any case, I can confirm and repeat it: the coach represents the club and he must not wear a tracksuit during the matches. Football should follow the example of basketball in this aspect,” continued the Italian coach.

“Milan will play with three strikers or two strikers and a trequartista, but it depends on who the opponent is. If I’ve explained it to Berlusconi? We agree. And I have always fielded four offensive players: three strikers plus a midfielder who makes inserting runs. How I felt about a possible sale of El Shaarawy? Napoli sold Cavani and reinvested the money, and Roma did the same thing with Marquinhos. That being said, I’m happy that El Shaarawy stayed because he has done some good things and he will do better things. If it wouldn’t have been bad if El Shaarawy had been sold? You need to look at the facts:

“The Italian clubs have to be self-financing. With all the money that’s going around in the world, it’s impossible to be declared as unsellable. There aren’t any unsellable players in Italy. If I would have liked to have had Ogbonna at Milan? He’s a good defender. Juventus had a great defence and now they have improved it. But we have signed Matias Silvestre.

“And those defenders that I have are good. My defence is often criticised, but we didn’t concede that many goals in the second part of last season.  It shows that the team is working well because if you leave your defenders isolated then even the best defenders in the world will struggle too. Why I’m still playing with four defenders when many Italian teams are playing with three? Nobody in Europe plays with three defenders, and it’s basically a five-man defence. I use the players that I have, and I like a defence consisting of four players, and a midfield with three players,” the 45-year-old added.

“If I’m worried about the current injuries? No. Mexes and Abate are fit and ready. De Sciglio and Robinho should also be ready for the Champions League play-offs. Who the leader in this Milan squad is? There are many. Montolivo has grown a lot in terms of personality, and then there’s Abbiati who looks like a bear, but is a real man that a coach can count on. And then there’s also Bonera. Nigel De Jong? He has charisma and personality. I didn’t think that he would return to being in top shape so quickly. Nigel has a good technique, and we have Montolivo, Poli and Muntari who are also good technically.

“Muntari has a good technique for a midfielder. In the great Milan side, Pirlo played with Gattuso and Ambrosini if I recall correctly. It’s not true that I favor muscular and physical players – I like technical players. You need to have technique within in a squad, but Milan always play with four players in attack. Isn’t that enough for you?” Allegri told the Gazzetta reporter.

This is Allegri’s fourth season in charge at Milan. The first one was the most successful one with the Scudetto won, he later went on to finishing as runner-up to Juventus are a Scudetto fight and last year Milan and Max finished in third place.

Translation credit: @Milanello

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Greg
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Greg

“A midfielder who makes interesting runs” isn’t an attacking player, we all want out 4th attacker to be Honda/Saponara/Ljajic not Nocerino

EllO
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EllO

We are pretty strong this year ,just need to keep Balo ,DeSicglio,Elsha as long as possible ..We can beat anyone now, but i still expect world class Cb. Napoli did too much changes,Inter need a time ..so we gonna fight with JUve and Fiorentina for the Top. Forza MILANO

Jibola
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Jibola

I see a much brighter future ahead. FORZA MILAN

nizam
Guest

Juventus and inter are struggling in the pre season that could means that the real tittle challenger is napoli,roma,and fiorentina i think that milan will win the scudetto and the copa italia while for CL i think that we are going to lose in the quarter final but i hope for the best FORZA MILAN

gaushow
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gaushow

Improved as a team??? sorry allegri, but you didnt build a team… you just have a bunch of players that doenst know what to do on the pitch…

stop worring about what the other coaches are wearing and try to learn from then. Because then, unlike you, can win trophies…

Yeah.. and dont worry about the injuries… its not like we suffer every year because of then…

GO AWAY CANCER

Anti-cyborg/gaushow
Guest
Anti-cyborg/gaushow

ur the cancer,shoo

Flash
Guest
Flash

STOP SAYING OUR TEAM MEMBERS CANCERS AS YOU SAID ABOUT ROBINHO…

YOU TELL THIS ALL THE TIME..IF YOU DONT WANT TO SEE THEM IN THE TEAM GO AND TELL BERLUSCONI TO FIRE THEM OF CHANGE TEAM..

WHAT AN IDIOT FAN OF ANTI-MILAN!

dejan10
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dejan10

“If I would have liked to have had Ogbonna at Milan? He’s a good defender. Juventus had a great defence and now they have improved it. But we have signed Matias Silvestre.” Hahaha I nearly blew coffee out my nose when I read that.

And this is another Allegri gem: “It’s not true that I favor muscular and physical players – I like technical players.”

Please, stop Max, you’re killing me. Funniest interview I’ve read all year.

acbaba
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acbaba

Dat isn’t half as funny as this;”Nigel has a good technique, and we have Montolivo, Poli and Muntari who are also good technically.
Muntari has a good technique for a midfielder”…i nearly died of laughter

Kuchini
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Kuchini

What did you expect him to say!?
“This team is filled with crap players and we have no chance at any silverware”!?

ROSSONERI4EVA
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ROSSONERI4EVA

Remember his goal against Barca? Was that not good technique?

nick
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nick

I will support the team and the coach this season but I truly have my doubts about how much different it will be with Allegri as coach!

Every season so far Milan always started off slow! So i expect Milan to struggle in the first few games judging from the last 3yrs with Allegri.

Only Napoli, Roma and Fiorentina look like serious contenders…

i expect Inter to struggle as they will need another calciopoli scandal to rise to the top!

Cyborg
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Cyborg

This guy is a joker! Did he just say muntari has good technic! And by an attacking MF he means nocerino! He’s a REAL JOKER.

sherzod
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sherzod

what pısses me of ıs he doesnt even try to use some players at theır rıght posıtıon,he dıd ıt wıth Emanuelson and ıt worked out. so why not for boateng

Balotelli
Guest
Balotelli

We need classic players on the Defensce Galliani! Not ssilvestre

sydourf
Guest

Alleri no doubt U̶̲̥̅̊’r 2 muslular or physical.. I ws yelling seedorf wil b quite aiit as a coach 4get d xperience buh he has d leadership α̩̩̩̩̥​Ω̶̣̣̥̇̊​d̶̲̥̅̊​ ideal O̶̷̩̥̊͡ƒ a coach.. Dis allegri sucks 2 muscular. No sence O̶̷̩̥̊͡ƒ humour wen he nids 2 sub.. α̩̩̩̩̥​Ω̶̣̣̥̇̊​d̶̲̥̅̊​ lastly he is 2 wack…pls milan do W̶̲̥̅̊Ћi̶̲̥̅̊. U̶̲̥̅̊ like cos milanistas A̶̲̥̅я̅ε̲̣̣̣ pissd off

Aminu Yusuf
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Aminu Yusuf

Iam very confident and optimistic thid season. The team may not have superstars in every position but that is also true of Borrussia Dortmund. Going with youth is right decision. Forza Allegri and Forza Milan.

Jerry
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Jerry

Yes, the HUGE difference is that Dormunt have a WC coach (one of the best in my opinion) and he makes them play at a higher level, as for allegri he can’t even make Balo and Elsha gel.

kelvin
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kelvin

Those who support Allegri, I wonder if they also agree to the statements he makes because to say Muntari has good technique is like being slapped 10 thousand times on the face!!!

pedantic J
Guest
pedantic J

Allegri will best fit PRO of a firm..lolz..Nice choice of words to make milan look Great..

toga
Guest

The only places I think our dear coach got it wrong were…..muntari is technical and I don’t use physical player….you lied sir

Mo6_milan
Guest

Where is Giancarlo here pls

inzywong
Guest
inzywong

Nocerino is useless and muntari doesn’t know how to pass/cross a ball you clearly saw it against chelsea. Muntari lost 9 out of 10 balls. Technical? This is the reason why I want Allegri to be sacked! He’s retarded and dumb. Boateng is useless as attacker/trequartista. His true position is the midfield with de jong and monto

1five1
Guest

technique dosen’t neccesarily translates 2 dribble, and technique is nt d same as creativity. So when he says muntari is technical, he knows what he’s saying cuz he’s d coach n he knws what he asked of him.
And i dnt like muntari too, just dat u’re lookin for every opportunity 2 bash allegri.

Ted
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Ted

There still are rational people on this blog, thank you

Jibola
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Jibola

Important updates: Galliani has scheduled a face-to-face video conference meeting with Evgeni Giner (President of CSKA) from the USA to finalize a deal for Honda. Source: Studio Sport Galliani has also scheduled a meeting with Fiorentina owner Andrea Della Valle to mend relationship with Fiorentina and fix all controversial issues going one. Milan could slightly increase the initial offering of approximately 8 million to further convince Fiorentina to sell Ljajic to Milan. Source: Sport mediaset The Genoa sporting director Daniele Delli Carri has reiterated Genoa’s intention to take Niang on loan and in addition Kingsley Boateng (who is also of… Read more »

Mustafa
Guest

Thanks for the updates, right now I just can’t wait for Honda anymore, I just can’t….Galliani pleas get him fast!!! 🙁

dejan10
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dejan10

Thanks for the update! Personally I think we should hold on to Niang.

TWF
Guest
TWF

IMO, allegri is too rigid in terms of tactical decisions. He is affraid of changing the formation. I can say that his tactic is not flexible. If i compare allegri with conte, conte is more successful because he has guts to take risk by making some tactical changes during the game. As a milanisti, i admit that conte is a better coach than allegri. Somehow, in the last 2 seasons conte knew how to motivate his players to work as a team to win the title.

Orazio
Guest
Orazio

Actually Muntari has pretty good technique. The problem is that he makes a ridiculous number of mistakes with the ball in every game. He is sloppy. It’s more of a mental problem than a matter of technique. If you’ve watched Muntari for years, you know that he is capable of some moments of absolute class on the ball. So the technique is there, he just doesn’t show it that often…

Chudy
Guest
Chudy

I agree 100% with Allegri.. technique is a relative term.. I watched again the Chelsea – Milan match with no pressure. They were a lot of positives to take from that game.

The bulk of us here were commenting like the team strolled thru 90mins. We are a young but good side, make no mistake about this.

Forza Milan

Mo6_milan
Guest

Allegri is good or bad, I tink he’s been in the top sit of a big european club like Ac Milan for up to 3 years… Why can’t we just leave this man alone and support our darling club??? Everyone just looking for ways to bash him,,, even when he won the league which Ancelotti himself managed to win once even when we have quality players, some fans here still bashed him.

This club is more than just Allegri and Muntari

sherzod
Guest
sherzod

but that Ancelotti made 3 UCL final and won 2 of them, there is BIG different mate

MIlan4live
Guest
MIlan4live

I agree with you…I just can’t leave my club bcos it is coached by Allegri..if you hate Allegri so much..stop supporting when he will coach different club..As long as he is Milan coach, I will support him good or bad..

Some Guy
Guest
Some Guy

“My relationship with Conte and Mazzari? I respect everyone. But there is a difference between professionalism and character.” Allegri is just nicely and professionally saying that he dislikes Conte and Mazzari, haha.

Alessandro
Guest
Alessandro

Where is Honda?!

Juninho
Guest
Juninho

Russia.

ROSSONERI4EVA
Guest
ROSSONERI4EVA

Im confident we can challenge for Scudetto, if we sign Honda, Ljajic and one more special last day buy from Galliani. Otherwise I think top 3 would be a good achievement for the team, but as Milan we must target 1st and must therefore make those signings. I don’t get why so many people bash Bonera and Muntari though. They r both solid players not brilliant, yes, but solid squad players.
As always, Forza Milan!!!

Ted
Guest
Ted

Allegri is a guy with strong character and can guide this boys to the top All u bashers and football manager fans sayin he’s not “Milan material”, well guess what, SO ARE NOT THE PLAYERS AT HIS DISPOSAL! In his 3 years he never had peace, management was selling players, replacing them with medicores etc. so what can u expect a? All u thought Milan was doomed last season when Ibra and Silva left but we made it to CL playoffs. NON OF U BELIEVED! And u still bash… Hypocrites! I’m excited now as things look better, players are performing… Read more »

vicnas
Guest
vicnas

@sherzod, here’s a reality check.Ancelotti had younger versions kaka ,inzaghi,nesta,Maldini,seedorf, rui costa,gatusso, ambro, galadze, cafu etc.can you seriously compare the quality gap between Carlo’s side and Allegri’s side?

phenol
Guest
phenol

@ vicnas u forgot my legend andriy shevchenko. Even Jaap stam.

Juninho
Guest
Juninho

The same “crazy talk” ever.

ladon
Guest
ladon

I watched the chelsea game too. Not a great match though but i saw plenty of improvement especially in area of keeping the ball. It Just that some players like Kpb, Muntari, Traore,Zacardo, Antonini are just here to add up to numbers. Galiani should be thinking seriuosly of trowing these players away because they are so terrible.