Zvonomir Boban has insisted that AC Milan are currently in the middle of a process, and branded Gianluigi Donnarumma as the club’s leader.
The Rossoneri underwent a big overhaul on and off the field over the summer, which began when Gennaro Gattuso left as head coach and sporting director Leonardo chose to return to Paris Saint-Germain.
Paolo Maldini was offered more responsibility and took the role of technical director, while Boban quit FIFA to take up a position on the Milan board and Ricky Massara arrived to replace Leonardo.
Six signings followed for a combined sum of over €90m; namely Theo Hernandez, Rade Krunic, Rafael Leao, Ismael Bennacer, Leo Duarte and the loan acquisition of Ante Rebic.
After mixed success in preseason, Giampaolo’s side have won two of their opening three games in Serie A but have failed to find any real fluidity in any of the fixtures, having scored just twice in those games.
At the presentation of the book by Paolo Condò, Boban spoke to the microphones of MilanNews about the current state of the team ahead of next weekend’s derby.
“When I arrived at Milan the core was strong. You immediately accept the culture of work, respect for the community, values that I felt to Dinamo but it was of another level,” he said.
“I loved Milan right away, it was easy for me to get used to these values, but at Milan I learned everything, from tactics to respect.
“I thank Costacurta, Maldini, Donadoni, Baresi, a privilege to play with them. I hope to find at least one today that is close to the level of the past ones.”
On the derby, he added: “We are in a process, it’s just the beginning. But Inter are a bit more of favourites than us, even if the derby is always open.
“It takes a bit of time. Sometimes after two training sessions you feel that you are in tune with certain players. Inter use the 3-5-2 which is an easier system than playing with 4 in the back.
“New players in the derby? The coach is Giampaolo, you have to ask him.”
There have been comments from the media suggesting that Milan are missing a leader, an idea Boban wanted to quickly squad.
“Actually he is there. It’s been an absurd transfer market with thousands of agents wanting to explain football to us. Among thousand things I realised that Donnarumma is that man.
“He [Donnarumma] has so much passion, so much ‘Milanismo’ inside him, despite being so young he has so much weight.”