GdS: Pioli to adopt a Klopp-style role as Milan head coach – what that means

By Oliver Fisher -

Paolo Maldini and Ricky Massara have left their positions as the technical and sporting director of AC Milan, and that will have ramifications for Stefano Pioli too.

As confirmed by La Gazzetta dello Sport (via, the farewell of Maldini and Massara will not affect Pioli’s future in the slightest in terms of him potentially also losing his job.

The Rossoneri coach received a message of trust from the ownership yesterday, as they greatly appreciate the work he has done both in terms of results on the field but also developing players on the training ground.

He managed to lead Milan to win the Scudetto after an 11-year drought in 2021-22 and guided them to the semi-finals of the Champions League after a 16-year wait. However, not everything will remain the same.

Greater involvement

What will have to change instead is the level at which Pioli gets involved, given that Maldini and Massara previously had virtually the entire say when it came to signings and sales, with Pioli working with what he was given.

With the promotion of a figure more in the background like Geoffrey Moncada to de facto sporting director, it will be up to the coach to have a strong voice in the building of the squad.

Klopp-esque role

RedBird’s idea is to build a well-oiled gear in which each component (coach, management and ownership) work synergistically and without protagonism for the good of Milan.

Precisely for this reason, the role that Pioli will play in the new Rossoneri course will be more similar – in relative terms – to that of well-known Premier League managers like Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool and in the past at Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United.

Work begins immediately

There are a lot of areas that must be addressed, but among the choices that the Rossoneri coach will have to make before the start of preseason ideally is the kind of player he wants to cover Ismael Bennacer’s absence, given the midfielder is out until December.

Then, the coach will have to decided which players are no longer part of his plans and can thus be sold to bring in additional funds, like Ante Rebic and Divock Origi.

Tags AC Milan Stefano Pioli


    1. It’s not a new concept though. Fergusson already did that since 3 decades ago, he also made a lot of transfer mistakes but nobody dare to challenge him.

      1. Ferguson is on the top 4 of highest ‘spending’ managers in EPL. And mind you, that’s before the player’s valuation took a high steep like in recent years.

  1. Never thought I’d see Stefano Pioli and Sir Alex Ferguson in the same sentence but there’s a time for everything

  2. The downside of this kind of thing is that every coach has his own preferences and style. And when things don’t go as planned, he’d leave too many DNAs that can be unsuitable for the successor. And we’re back to square one.

  3. What happens if Pioli is sacked Next season? He is old and average at best. If Redbird wants to take this route they better get younger coach with potential like De Zerbi, Nagelsmann or even Pirlo.

      1. Bcuz He is young, smart, club legend, and affordable. Even if some people deem him failure at Juve but at least he experienced coaching a big club.

    1. We dont have money to pay brighton for de zerbi , nagelssmann will go to PSG . Only pirlo,gattuso,sheva are affordable but i will choose pioli from that 3 . Vicenzo italiano & palladino have same style with pioli but im not sure their club want to release them

  4. Once again, cheap talk. Pioli will have autonomy, as long as the players he wants are unknown guys coming for little money. He should already start to watch chinese division 3 and italien Serie C2 to find his future players.

    1. Indeed!

      The Americans are famous for their marketing aka spinning skills. Cardinale has probably hired some spin doctors to pacify the angry Milan fans and to spurn off his brutal sacking of Maldini.

      1. Yea I mean the directors who have been in almost all actual training sessions with the coach sitting and discussing and speaks with him all the time, never once Pioli said to them I don’t want x player or get me y player. Or vice versa, M&M never asked him his opinion on a player? That’s very sus to me….
        Now all of a sudden Pioli is going to “have a say” ? Really ? 🤷‍♂️

  5. Pametna prosudba Gazde !! Maldini i Masara imali su loše potrošen zadnji transfer i 5 mjesto koje ne vodi u LP !!! Dakle OTKAZ !!! Pioli je napravio čudo i lani i ove godine i zato OSTAJE uz još veće ovlasti !!!!Tako to funkcijonira u KAPITALIZMU bez uvrede za bilo koga !! VJERUJEM Red Birdu i Kardinaleu !!!

  6. This is funny. All the world of football can work in complete synergy for the good of Milan and it will not make a difference as long as the budget is 35m LMAO

    They are just playing with words. Punch line is Milan can’t strengthen all the problem areas this summer.

    1. Not next summer. Not even the summer after next summer.

      Because Carndinale and Redbird need to pay back at least 300-million loan from Elliot Management asap given the rising interest rate in $$$. So, the 100 million Milan has earned from Champions League is to be used to pay back his debt.

  7. Are we assuming that Maldini and Massara never sat down with Pioli and Moncada to evaluate player profiles? I would imagine the opposite to be a farfetched idea.

  8. “ The Rossoneri coach received a message of trust from the ownership yesterday, as they greatly appreciate the work he has done both in terms of results on the field but also developing players on the training ground.”

    Lol. But allegedly Maldini was fired because the young players (like CDK, Aster, Adli) did NOT develop?? LOL. Whose fault is that? The Scout who suggested the and the coach who did NOT develop them – or Maldini?

    SPIN SPIN SPIN….LOL. It is what is is now BUT we all know the truth. Maldini was fired because he asked Ownership to spend more $$$$ (publicly) – and Gerry was embarrassed. Pioli will always remains silent cause he’s happy to be there and won’t complain and will take whatever he is given. I like Pioli and think he has done a great job thus far – but he’s far far from perfect and Klopp he is not. He’s tactical awareness is poor and his in-game decision making is even poorer (Constantly starting Messias is just one example, or playing an all out open game vs Inter in the first leg of CL without Leao instead of playing for a draw is another). Hope he improves for our sake. But I’m not sure he has earned the right like a Klopp or Sir Alex to chose which players he wants and doesn’t just yet.

  9. Reading all the comments here i think you are overthinking it. They have a olan for the club its that simple. Maldini was not aligned with it so they restructured. In my opinion Pioli did freat with what he was given, now lets see how good he is. Sacchi actually praised him so for ne that speaks volumes. De Zerbi aside why on earth any of those names mentioned above would be floated to replace Pioli? I dont get it. Pioli is good

  10. Considering there will be 35 millions available and what comes from sales, there’s not much to expect. Pioli wants SMS but he costs 30 millions at least. You sure he has a say in all this? Moncada will give him a list of young and cheap french and belgium talents to choose from. That’s how we got Saele, Vranckx, Adli, Hauge. Origi and Ballo Toure were probably moneyball misses. Kalulu and Thiaw only ones turned out good.

  11. Pioli should go coach Sampdoria
    He got there because of Maldini
    Go hell you idiot
    You are unprofessional,unappreciated, Person
    You always will be looser

  12. Pioli.. The coach who used to play Krunic in RW, LW, ST and CAM is the one who wants to be.. Klopp? The guy.. who couldn’t beat relegation level teams.. wants to SAF? LMFAO

    What Results on the field exactly? Like losing to relegation teams? That’s precisely why we are in this mess in the first place.

    Developing players on training ground?
    Who ON EARTH Did he develop? MESSIAS?
    Tonali deteriorated under his training.
    We now get players INJURED in the training.
    Kalulu developed as well it seems. But backwards lol
    Leao took 3 years to ‘develop’ under Pioli while Krava did in 10 days lol
    Who did Pioli develop exactly?
    Answer? NOBODY.

    This is just Cardinale trying to brainwash fans who can ACTUALLY see through his intentions by his actions in the past. EVERYONE knows Pioli ain’t even the right coach for this team. There is no way no one believes Pioli is the center piece. The moment Zlatan stopped being involved, Pioli’s whole team just collapsed. One hell of a coach he is. Mind you.. This is the exact SAME Scudetto winning team, just without Kessie. And without one player.. a scudetto winning coach just loses to relegation teams for 5 games straight ? And we are comparing this guy to SAF or Klopp? PIOLI was just riding on Leao’s performance and Zlatan’s mentality. Pioli didn’t bring anything else beside a defensive tactics called ‘high press’. He is a good man manager though. That’s about it.


    Yeah little Gerry. NO thanks. Some of the fans can see straight through your shenanigans.


    Forza Milan.

    1. Pioli did not win anything. Inzaghi lost, and by accident Pioli won. Do you know when he is going to win again? Never!

  13. Most if not all english teams have moved to appointing sporting directors, they no longer give all the authority to the managers, why, because nowadays managers are changed every now and again, sporting directors ensure continuity, genius cardinale is moving the other way, hope he will keep pioli for long

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