M’Baye Niang says ‘at these moments you have to get your head down and work’ but believes Milan did well against Roma.
After the very negative performance against Crotone last night, which also included a missed penalty, it was thought that coach Montella will drop Niang against Roma on Monday night and play Keisuke Honda from the start.
However, the Frenchman was given the start and although he did better than last week, Niang still provided a relatively poor performance and once again missed from the spot. The Rossoneri lost 1-0 in the battle for second place and the fans have all been wondering ‘what if’ Niang scored that goal in the 27′ minute.
“The penalty? I am going through a difficult time,” Niang told MilanTV at the end of the match. “I took the responsibility of the penalty again on Monday and I am really sorry, but at these moments when things go wrong you have to get your head down and work. There’s no problem with Lapadula.
“Before the spot-kick he told me to focus and stay calm. I’ll let Lapadula take the next one, as he deserves it and is going through a period where he has more confidence than me [Lapadula earned the penalty both against Crotone and against Roma but Niang was the designated kicker].
“The match [Milan conceded in the 62 minute from Radja Nainggolan]? In my view, we played a great game and we really managed to put onto the pitch what we practice in training. They did well to score with their only chance, but we have to continue like this because we are doing really good.
“Our strength is the team, we’ve been saying that since the start of the season. I am convinced that if we play like this then we’ll certainly get the three points against Atalanta on Saturday. We’re playing at San Siro and we hope that in the last game of 2016 all the fans will be with the team.”
It will be interesting to see what Montella will do regarding Niang on Saturday when the Diavolo host Atalanta (18:00 CET kickoff) as Giacomo Bonaventura is expected to return to the squad by then.