Ismaël Bennacer has spoken to MilanTV ahead of the game against Atalanta.
The Christmas is very near and tomorrow the Rossoneri will play their last match of 2019, visiting Atalanta at Stadio Atleti Azzurri d’Italia (12:30 CET kickoff).
The Diavolo will be without the suspended Theo Hernández and Lucas Paquetá, but they will have Ismaël Bennacer at the heart of the midfield again. The Algerian spoke to MilanTV:
You are on the shortlist for the African Player of the Year…
“I’m happy to have made the final 10. It’s certainly an important milestone for me, now I have to work hard to make sure I always make the list.”
What’s changed at Milanello since your arrival?
“I have played more games now, but it’s the same thing for me, I have the same desire to keep working and doing really well. Obviously, things are better now because I know my teammates and the staff better, everyone that works here…”
How do you get on with Biglia?
“He gives me a lot of advice, especially when I make mistakes, everyone makes mistakes and he helps me improve a lot, I am learning a lot from him. That’s how it is in football, when you have a teammate like him it’s always advantage.”
Have you settled into the squad?
“I talk to the entire team because we are a team and so I don’t treat people differently. For me, every player is equal although I do have greater affinity with certain players but I talk, laugh and joke with everyone.”
Atalanta-Milan without Theo…
“Someone else will take his place and we are confident, we trust whoever will take his place. We’ll be at his side 100% and he’ll help and give everything for the team, that’s what matters. We need to give everything because afterwards we’ll be on break and so we have to give a lot more to end the year well.”
How has your role in the team changed?
“I’m learning a lot of things which gives me more confidence and that allows me to hold onto the ball a bit more when necessary and I try to win it back when I can, and I try to play directly when I can too. But I can still help the team a lot more. I didn’t score against Sassuolo, it was a big mistake because we can’t get these chances wrong, and no professional should, so I need to show everyone that I can score.”
What’s under the Christmas tree for the fans?
“We have to give everything for the fans because they give everything for us. I hope that Sunday’s match will go well. We also need to give everything for our coach because he gives everything, he works really hard. Really, really hard. So we have to do well for him too, because we’re all aware that it’s the coach who pays when we do poorly. So we have to do well for him too.”
What do you hope for in the New Year?
“I want to do better than 2019, I need to work harder and improve. I think I need to be more decisive than this year.