Berlusconi: “I was born Milanista, even the Milan players thought Sacchi and I were mad, no one believed we could achieve those results, Van Basten…”

Silvio Berlusconi at training center Milanello on December 8, 2012. (GIUSEPPE CACACE/AFP via Getty Images)

Silvio Berlusconi has spoken to MilanTV ahead of the club’s 120 year anniversary.

Milan are celebrating 120 years in six days’ time (December 15) and the club’s official TV channel aired an interview with Silvio Berlusconi today.

The former President of the Diavolo, who was the owner of the club from 1986 to 2017, selling to the Chinese Yonghong Li who then handed over the club to the American fund Elliott Management Corporation, the current owners, stated:

“I was born Milanista, I used to go to the stadium with my dad, for many years. Milan had a special place in my heart and like all the kids, I saw the Milan players as role models for dedication and perseverance to obtain important and difficult results. And when I saw that things at Milan were going from bad to worse, with all that had occurred I decided to get in the game and that’s where my story at Milan started, one that then turned out to be marvelous. It was not just a spark, but a fire!

“After the first year, where we had to make do with the situation there was before, with Liedholm as manager and so on, and with the players signed by the previous owners of the club, we then ran a quite impressive first transfer campaign, then started talks with Arrigo Sacchi as we saw in Sacchi a coach who had a clear idea of football, who could instill in the players the right mindset, someone who could instill teamwork, and set specific objectives to achieve.

“I sat next to him and we worked together on a schedule that many considered overly ambitious and they would laugh at our objectives and even the players thought we were mad. But in the end we did meet our schedule as we won the Scudetto in Italy, the European Cup, followed by the International Cup in Tokyo. We did spiritual exercises and I was accustomed to these as I grew up in the Salesian youth centers and every year we went on a spiritual retreat trying to focus only on ourselves, on our main goals and our future. I did the same thing at Milan by gathering at Castle Pomerio, every club employee, and they were all surrounded by an atmosphere which had been created to obtain the results we wanted to achieve and the outcome was absolutely positive.

Roberto Donadoni, Filippo Galli, Mauro Tassotti, Franco Baresi, Arrigo Sacchi and Silvio Berlusconi with the Champions League trophy during Sacchi’s book presentation at Banco BPM auditorium on June 17, 2019. (

“I liked Sacchi a lot because he was very respectful, humble, would answer questions with absolute precision, and would listen to what Galliani and I had to say to him with a deep sense of regard. That’s why I was thoroughly convinced he was the right man for Milan. In those days, defensive football reigned in Italy and all the teams, especially when playing away, would just focus on defending and playing on the counter-attack. We revolutionized this philosophy and Milan became the team that took to the field to dominate, to win, to create chances, to score plenty of goals, to play quality and entertaining football for the fans and to always respect our opponents.

“I had read of Van Basten’s exploits in the papers and seen him on TV and I was immediately convinced that to sign him – since he was far from wanting to come to Italy – I would have to use all my powers of conviction and persuasion to make him accept our offer. We all know how it went when he came to Milan.”

Silvio Berlusconi at Milanello (

Berlusconi was also asked about a letter he once wrote, which read: “Dear father, from those sleepless nights working at home to make ends meet for a family in post-war Italy, how sweet a memory it is today remember you and Milan together in the moment of success, in those of great acclaim, of Milan’s international fame in present days. Let me, my dear old Milan, mix my story with yours.”

The former Italy Prime Minister said: “I still carry with me those values and an absolute love for my father, whom I was lucky enough to have. I wrote that letter in one go because it was my feelings that turned into words, and I dedicated that great victory to my lovely dad.


“[Sacchi, Capello and Ancelotti] were the only three coaches I could fully work with, in total harmony, both for Milan’s philosophy and style of play, and for the starting XI they would pick every Sunday and which they would discuss with me before every game.

“No one believed we could achieve those results and I’m absolutely satisfied and pleased: thanks to Milan’s victories, I am the most successful President in the history of world football. Wherever I go, there’s someone who wants to shake my hand, hug me and even kiss me, to tell me they are Milanisti and thank me for the Milan we managed to build. And this happens not only in Italy, but also abroad.

“There are many Rossoneri fans, even non-Italians, who recognize me, approach me, congratulate me and want to hug me.”

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

well, im milanista but i aint hugging u berlu, and i sure as hell aint hugging joe biden either thank you very much


Same here.. Despite being a Milanista, I would not defy the fact that I respect Moratti than Berlusconi as a club’s president.


Hmm… We’re forever grateful for you rescuing Milan from the scrap heap but leaving it on the scrap heap is another matter. My brain hurts when I think about all the transfer blunders and mismanagement c*ck-ups from 2007 – 2017.


Hmn, Carlo will be available in the next season, Rino is the new coach of Napoli and according to Calciomercato reports Boban-Maldini are serious about Diaz who wants to leave for more playtime, 24M is fair and is the right kind of buy we need. And the sweetest news of the day Inter is out of CL Hahahahaha


What do you mean haha….

We need these teams to perform. Do you have nay idea how these looks on us. You put the best of Spain Italy and a above average German team in a group and the Italian gets knocked out. It’s embarrassing.

I was watching the game and I so badly wanted inter to win because they represented serie a football. They are first place in the league and get thrown out champions league.. Its extremely embarrassing

Baresis Dream

You know TruthSeeker, I used to believe I feel the same as you. I used to say “I want also Inter to succeed because it’s for the greater good of Italian football”.

But now that this is actually happening, seeing Inter in their shape and comparing it to ours really breaks my heart. Screw them and their genius coach; let them fail miserably in anything they attempt.


I wanted Juve to win CL because of Buffon, and because the captain of my National Team played for Juve . But now screw every Italian team other than Milan.


I mean HaHaHa You won’t get more Money to strengthen Conte’s squad. You see, that’s where you’re wrong, Champions League gets team exposure, means better merchandising and a prize pool that is shared between teams according to their respective performances. The more they win the more Money they get. Not Even winning the league they could get that much Money. Europa League gives nothing, and Conte will have to choose between fighting for the league(the most obvious choice considering they are in 1st place) or trying to win both competitions, an approach that will expose players to exhaustion and injuries,… Read more »


TWM reports that Rino wants Kessie at Napoli. I think that Kessie played in a role that isn’t suitable for him under Rino. I think he might do better in a deeper more defensive role.

Between our midfielders he is the perfect to reinvest on a playmaker. But really Rino? From all the places in the World You Will buy at Milan? While I think this is favorable for us, specially if Napoli meets Milan’s 30m demands this doesnt look good for a man who loves Milan. Buy somewhere else.

Baresis Dream

Kessie should stay and play as LDM to cover Theo. As you say, if he can be restricted to a defensive role, Kessie can be quite solid and reliable (as long as he doesn’t attempt shooting or long lobs)


I think Rino is trying to help us and help Napoli by buying Kessie.