Marco Giampaolo saw improvements in the game of Milan against Manchester United and also complimented Suso, Çalhanoğlu, Biglia and Jack.
The Rossoneri have not won a single game in pre-season, as they have one 1-1 draw against Novara, two 1-0 defeats to Bayern Munich and Benfica, and one defeat in penalties to Manchester United after 2-2 in regular time.
However, there are still many reasons to be optimistic ahead of the new season, as the boys of Giampaolo have been playing quality and enjoyable football for most of this pre-season.
“After the friendly match against Benfica, I said that we had played with faith, attachment, ideas of play and collective participation, and everyone is in that line of thinking,” Giampaolo said in a post-match presser and to MilanTV, according to Milannews.it and acmilan.com.
“Attention to detail is part of the job, but the players have got the bulk of the music I’m trying to play. They’re playing with the right mentality and the thing that pleases me most is they’ve all bought in, they’re on board with the project. That means they’re doing things they believe in. We still need to build on our fitness, and our cohesion and the fine details. That’s a normal part of the job. But the guys have taken on board most of the ideas.
“Milan has strong, quality players and if we all start playing from the same music sheet then we’ll be even stronger. Over time we’ll improve more and more. These are games that reveal errors and we have committed them. Playing together as a team makes each individual better. There will be periods in which we improve less, which is normal when you’re working to develop. But I’m happy to see the guys playing with belief in what they’re doing, I am happy with how involved they are. We must play the game and not let others play on us.
“I’ve seen things even better than against Benfica. There was an even more important commitment. I think my players had fun playing this game, it’s definitely another step forward and we will always have to do it. We have to get to Udinese in the right way. The biggest thought I have is regarding the integration of the new players, I still have at least 5-6 players out… it’s about bringing those six to think how the other twenty think. They will adapt as they go along.
“Suso? He is a great player, in a league of his own. Without a doubt. I’ve told him, and I’ve told the club, he is not a problem, we must keep hold of our strong players. I’m in love, he drives me nuts and he is one who can decide things.
“Çalhanoğlu? He is an incredibly versatile player, he can cover any position in midfield. I shifted him to the center because Biglia had a physical issue and I didn’t want to risk him. However, I was very happy with how Biglia performed too, as I have been since we started working together, he’s a great professional and knows how to play a match. Çalhanoğlu can cover every role in midfield, but you need to give him specific instructions. We adapted him to the position for a quarter of an hour but when you know how to play you can adapt.
“Daniel Maldini? It’s OK, it was right that he kicked the penalty as he was designated as fifth. Unfortunately he got it wrong but it’s a useful path for him. Guys like him need matches to grow and if they don’t get them, they don’t grow.
“Bonaventura? He appears reborn. He’s been out for about eight months, and finally got a taste of the field again for 15 minutes. He was in better shape than he’s been in training, where he holds back a bit more.”