SM: Antonini discusses Milan’s season, current full-backs and possible Theo deputy – video

By Oliver Fisher -

Luca Antonini believes that Theo Hernandez is currently the best full-back out there, while he also suggested some deputies to look at ahead of next season.

Antonini was present at the ‘Memorial in memory of Claudio Lippi’ event and he spoke to one of our correspondents from about a number of different topics from the current campaign to the left-back role.

On Milan’s season: “They’re coming from a year, last year, in which they won the Scudetto, repeating yourself is never easy, but this year they had the strength to reach the semi-finals of the Champions League.

“Now they’re just thinking about closing the season well, taking into account the excellent performance seen against Sampdoria. I’ve seen the players loaded up and ready to reach their goal. Then if Juventus lose like this…”

On Maldini giving the season an 8 out of 10: “I would even say 9, because no one would have expected such a strong Milan. Since Pioli arrived, the team has changed for the better. The month of January wasn’t good but after the World Cup you never know how the players come back.

“The problem that was then solved with the results obtained later also thanks to a man like Ibrahimovic, too important for the dressing room especially on a mental level. He is an incredible player. He was missed a lot on the field.”

On what is missing for the leap in quality: “Maldini and Massara have been very good at finding even semi-unknown players and making them leaders of this team.

“They believed in certain young people after a few believed in it, an example is De Ketelaere: they have never abandoned him this year. He has incredible qualities, he just has to prove them. Let’s give him time to express himself at his best.”

On Theo Hernandez: “He is the strongest in Europe. There is no player with these qualities and continuity. He learned to defend very well, Pioli was instrumental in this. When he attacks he knows how to run, shoot, dribble, cross. He is a complete footballer. He is a captain, a leader and he proved it already last year. He is a player who grows every year.”

On Calabria: “He is one of those guys who grew up in the Milan youth sector. He’s had exponential growth, I agree. He feels the Rossoneri faith in his heart and the right responsibility. Every day he works to improve and I have to say that he did great in the last two seasons. He is one of those players who is pulling the cart, he is a captain too.”

On who could be the back-up to Theo Hernandez: “Playing for Milan isn’t easy for anyone. Especially when you have to deputise for Theo, replacing him isn’t easy, but if they had to put in Italian full-backs I’d be very happy.

“That’s because there are players in Italy, you just need to give them some space and trust even in the big teams. There is a need for Italian spirit in the team, especially for our national team. Players like Valeri, Parisi or Gallo…”

Tags AC Milan Luca Antonini


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  1. His name is Bozzolan!
    He has the highest number of assists for the Primavera this year.
    He is 19yo and should be given the opportunity.
    Whoever the deputy is they won’t get too much time as Theo is strong, so better to promote Bozzolan than wasting money. Also any decent young full back will want to go to a team where they will get game time.

    In an emergency scenario players like Calabria, Florenzi, Alexis and even Tomori can fill in at LB.

    Give youth a chance!

  2. On Maldini giving the season an 8 out of 10: “I would even say 9, because no one would have expected such a strong Milan…”

    People who know football would realize that this has been an great season for Milan. UCL semis and top 4 and a solid base to build for next season. Don’t be fooled by the comments section. Lots of idiots lurking here

    1. Look, this has been Milan’s problem, we just want to achieve the result, how we do it is less important. Juventus got point points deduction, and we found ourselves in CL position, we are comfortable already.

      “I would even say 9, because no one would have expected such a strong Milan…”
      Well, if this is what it means to have a “strong Milan” then I give up.

      This Milan isn’t strong, we have talents in the squad, but we don’t have a real coach yet, when we do, believe me, you will easily realise that you have been settling for mediocrity in your entire life.

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