AC Milan boss Gennaro Gattuso has re-iterated that he sees his future with the club, and re-iterated the importance of pulling together to help achieve a top four finish.
The Rossoneri are in dire need of a positive result against rivals Juventus in Turin on Saturday night, with a run of three games without a win throwing their top-four chances into doubt.
“Let’s think about the present, after the derby we’re struggling more,” he told reports.
“We can’t win, we have to understand why. I hear a lot of chatter about me and Leonardo. There is nothing between us, we work to bring the team into Champions League.
“You can win, call it a business or whatever you want. There are so many players doing amazing things a few weeks ago.
“Each of us now makes mistakes on a tactical level. I’ve heard that Leonardo told me to play with two points and the playmaker. That is bar talk.
“I want to be honest with you, I give you the explanation. We played against Udinese, a game we had to win at all costs. We could dare a a little more, we had the bad luck that Paqueta got hurt and we didn’t have the fluid game when he went off.
“If some of my players say we didn’t prepare well, they can. But these are my choices. So many times I tell Leo and Paolo [Maldini] who is playing only on the day of the match. Tomorrow it takes everything, on a tactical level, of personality and desire.”
On recent struggles: “You compared me to the good soul of Nereo Rocco. I know my team well and I know what kind of football we can play.
“Then it is clear that a coach must always looking for something new. You have to put the players in the right position if you want to be able to keep a team for the way you prepared it.
“With Sampdoria and Inter we gave the feeling of being able to hurt in the second half. Udinese the feeling was that we could concede a goal on the break. I agree in saying that they didn’t look like ‘my team’. So many times I try to do something different I’m doing something wrong too.
“We are not the only ones who are struggling, except for Atalanta, which is giving continuity of results. We are still in fourth place, we have also been lucky at times. We must not give up.”
Gattuso then turned his attentions to Saturday’s opponents Juve, who are on course for yet another league title.
“We need a game to come back alive. If we can get a positive result and a good performance there may be a turning point.
“They have a mentality, they never give up, they know how to stand the pressure and certain rhythms. They always have 4-5 players who have been wearing that shirt for many years and they are an added value.”
Rino then gave an update on the fitness of the squad, having battled a number of problems over the last week.
“Kessie trained with us. Romagnoli had a bit of a fever, but today he trained with the group. Paqueta is out a little longer, 20 days to a month, while Donnarumma I think that within a week will be available.”
Finally, Gattuso addressed his future at the club, amid rumours that he could be sacked regardless of a top four finish.
“I have a two-year contract after this. The other day I was not good at keeping the answer that I gave you and it turned out a fuss.
“My future is here, to be able to achieve the goals that I want to with this club.”