Calabria insists Milan are ‘hungry and ready to work’ despite suggestions of ‘physical decline’

By Oliver Fisher -

AC Milan captain Davide Calabria has revealed that the squad are not feeling dejected despite a difficult start to the 2023 calendar year results wise.

Milan face Inter in the Supercoppa Italiana tomorrow night in Saudi Arabia with just one win in their first four games since the season resumed, including disappointing league draws against Roma and Lecce which came either side of a Coppa Italia defeat to Torino.

Nonetheless, form seems to go out of the window for derby games as the red and blue sides of the city will play a game for a trophy for the first time in over a decade, with Stefano Pioli hoping for a response from his players.

Calabria spoke ahead of Stefano Pioli on what is media day on the eve of the Supercoppa clash against Inter, with his comments relayed by MilanNews and translated below.

Did you talk to your team-mates after the Lecce game? How are the group?

“We talked but we remain as positive as before. I have not seen them either dejected or sad, we have lacked results in the last few games but that doesn’t mean we have negative thoughts. We have to continue playing as we are doing, then the results will come by themselves.”

In a situation like this who are the team-mates who talk the most?

“Those with more experience speak. The team assumes its responsibilities from the first to the last player. If we want to become a great team, everyone must feel an integral part of this project. What we said to each other is right that it remains in the locker room. We have to play a final tomorrow and we have to give everything to win this match.”

What challenge will it be with Dimarco?

“It will be a good challenge with Dimarco. We grew up together in the national team, we have known each other for a long time. I am pleased that he is doing well. It will be a great challenge. I have been at Milan for a lifetime and I hope to be able to finish my career here but I’m not thinking about it now.”

How do you explain the defensive mistakes?

“I think it’s absurd the idea we are satisfied after the Scudetto. As much as we may have played well and won deservedly, we want to win again having seen what it feels like. A great team must be hungry and willing to work. We have it.

“The season it is long, there is a physical decline which is normal. We want to win tomorrow’s game, we expect this. Our focus is this. We made mistakes in readings that you pay for at these levels. We have studied these situations and we must no longer make mistakes in field.”

Have you thought about lifting a trophy as a captain?

“I can imagine, it’s my goal to raise this trophy. But first we have to give everything we have on the pitch. My dream is to win as many trophies as possible.”

Will it be a match with more meaning for you?

“Obviously this too is part of a journey of ups and downs, playing for a final as captain is a great thing. Playing it is one thing, winning it is another. We did a great job to be here, winning a Scudetto deservedly.

“I don’t like making comparisons with other captains from the past, I want to write my own history and this cup would be very important for everyone.”

Tags AC Milan Davide Calabria
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