AC Milan CEO Ivan Gazidis has once again reiterated that the target of the management is to bring the club ‘back to the top’ with their project.
The Rossoneri went to Bergamo and beat the only team that head coach Stefano Pioli was yet to conquer as a brace of penalties from Franck Kessie not only secured a return to the Champions League after a seven-year absence, but also ensured that Milan finished second – their highest finish since the 2011-12 campaign.
Gazidis spoke during an interview with il Corriere dello Sport about a number of different topics, including the project, the upcoming summer transfer window and even the Gianluigi Donnarumma saga, with his comments transcribed by MilanNews and translated below.
“The vision is very clear: to bring Milan back to the top. The market that we will see this summer will be different from all those that preceded. Our goal is to continue to be ambitious and optimistic, to improve the team by following the right path and combining results and financial stability,” he said.
“Attention will continue to be focused on young players, with some experienced elements. Now trust is growing. Seeing our fans under the offices to express their support was an extremely powerful signal.”
The media headlines have been dominated over the past fortnight by Donnarumma and his decision not to renew with the club, something that forced Milan to swoop for his replacement in Mike Maignan from Lille. He suggested that it was Donnarumma who made the call to leave, and that Raiola is not mainly to blame.
“I don’t want to reveal the details and I don’t know the boundaries of the relationship between Gigio and Raiola. In the end, of course, the decision is always the player’s. What I can say is that Gigio was an exceptional professional, in every single day, and in the last match against Atalanta there was no one happier than him for qualifying for the Champions League.
“I have absolute esteem for him, as well as respect his choices. He did what he thought was best for him, and there are some reasons on his side, but I don’t mention which ones.”
Gazidis also praised Maldini and Pioli: “I believed in Paolo from the first moment, I knew he could become a top level director, and that’s exactly what he is today. Just as Ibra surprised me with his tender side, Pioli struck me for his character. I was impressed by Stefano’s strength, as well as his sensitivity.”