AC Milan boss Gennaro Gattuso heaped praise upon his side after a huge 3-1 victory against top-four rivals Atalanta.

Remo Freuler scored the opened for the home side, but a brace from Piatek either side of the break and a Hakan Calhanoglu goal helped the Rossoneri secure a huge three points.

The win means that Milan are now four points clear of Roma in fifth place and just one point behind Inter in third.

“I think the secret right now is seeing the work the forwards do, the wingers soaking up the pressure of the Atalanta wing-backs. The desire we have when pressing and pushing to win back possession. We need to continue along this path,” Gattuso told Sky, via Football Italia.

“This Milan is enjoying itself, the players are enthusiastic, happy to be together and to train. We mustn’t lose that. After that, there is a lot of quality in the side, but more importantly everyone is putting their quality to work for the team and that is crucial.

“Piatek and Paqueta should be happy with what they are doing, but if they are doing so well, it is also thanks to their teammates and I think they realise that too. The whole team is working well and we must make sure we don’t let go of that mentality.”

Just as Franck Kessie did, Gattuso emphasised how important the timing of the equaliser was.

“We were certainly lucky to equalise 20 seconds from half-time, because otherwise it would’ve been much more difficult to score past this Atalanta.

“Piatek is a player who lives for the goal, but is also excellent on his movements and that type of goal we’re accustomed to seeing over the last few months at Genoa.

“It all revolves around the desire, the sacrifice, the way the team manages to stay focused and organised. It’s difficult to break us down at the moment.

“I think over the last two games, Calhanoglu has started giving us something extra and rediscovered his quality. It is a different team now.

“The hug with Calhanoglu is something I think of all the players I train. I respect all of them, we are very harmonious and it’s my duty to ensure every player is in a condition to give their best.

“I was very demanding of myself when I was a player and would basically punish myself. In the last seven or eight months, I’ve learned to listen more to those around me, the players and directors, to listen and learn.

“In the first few years, I still felt like a player, but I’ve shaken that off now. It’s true, I do try to seek what I experienced and felt as a player.

“However, I don’t agree that I trust players. Never trust a player! Trust has to be earned, so if they get the wrong pass once, twice, three times, then we can run into trouble.”

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