Journalist highlights where Milan and Serie A are behind Europe’s elite in training and preparation

By Oliver Fisher -

Italian clubs must learn to adapt their methods in performance and conditioning coaching in order to catch up with other teams around Europe, a journalist has claimed.

Fabrizio Salvio – a journalist for La Gazzetta dello Sport – spoke to MilanNews about the differences between Italian and European football, about injuries, working methods in training and more. He began by reflecting on the Champions League match last Tuesday evening that Liverpool won 2-1 and which you could have used bookmaker promotions to have a dabble on.

“Liverpool came to San Siro with a team lacking all but three starters: Alisson, who made only one save on Kessie when the score was already at 1-2, Mané, who practically did not show up, and Salah, who scored almost by mistake and then never shot on goal,” he said.

“Despite this, Liverpool gave Milan a really tough game. Trivially, it could be said that Liverpool’s reserves are stronger than Milan’s spare parts, but in my opinion that’s not the matter. It should be understood why Liverpool’s spares are stronger than Milan’s. To those who say that it is for economic means, TV revenues and everything else I answer that it is certainly true, but even this is not enough.

“What is the problem facing Milan and all Italian football? It’s a key I hit a lot, and it’s a nerve for our clubs. It is the idea of ​​football that underlies English, German and Spanish football. An idea that starts from the premise of taking care of the technique, starting with the young, more than anything else: tactics and athletic work dry, that is, without the ball.

“Work on the fundamentals which for us Italians is a general problem. It must be acknowledged that Pioli gave Milan a European game, modern, fast, aggressive and intense. Evidently enough in Italy but not enough in Europe. In Italy, the data show that Milan are the first team in our league in terms of sprints and and sprint speeds.

“They are not the first for kilometres traveled, but being the first in terms of play it means that Milan are a European team from this point of view. Like Milan there is Atalanta, who probably started earlier from this point of view: a game made up of rhythm, intensity, aggression.

“What we saw against Liverpool: despite playing in slippers, we saw that the Reds came to pick up the Rossoneri players in four or five, and as Pioli admitted at the end of the match, the Milan midfielders passed the ball more back than forward.

“What strikes me is that Tyler Morton, a 19-year-old player with one Premier League appearance this year, played as a veteran. What amazes and worries me is Kessie who in Italy makes the difference, without going into the merit of the contract, in Europe instead he is skipped by Chamberlain on the first goal.

“It may be a coincidence, but in general, and as the Italian athletic trainers who worked outside the country explained to me, they are treated one-on-one abroad. In Serie A, no one is one-on-one in training, because they say they are afraid that the players will get hurt. In short, in Italy there is too much tactics.

“We pride ourselves on being the most tactical and difficult championship in the world, but what does all this bring us? How many years have we not won the Champions League? Have we ever won the Europa League? Do we get to the bottom of any European competition? Conte’s Inter, who won the Scudetto last year, got slapped by Borussia Mönchengladbach because they run more, because they play more intense, more modern football, a one-on-one football.

“They explained to me that abroad, and by foreign I mean the most important European championships, they teach individual tactics. There is also two against two, three against three in the offensive phase, to leave the players the freedom to express themselves, to invent. Pioli take care of this thing, Messias signed for this. He wants players who know how to bet the man. So it is not a question concerning Milan, but it is a general one.”

On the many injuries: “I let the numbers do the talking. I turned to the site that is unanimously considered the most complete in Europe in accident statistics:, to which the same companies refer even if they often don’t like to admit it. The same clubs turn to noisefeed to monitor the team’s injured situation.

“In the last two seasons in the Premier League, Bundesliga and LaLiga there have been on average one hundred fewer muscle injuries than in Serie A. Let’s go back to the idea of ​​football: when I interviewed Ciro Immobile, a Borussia Dortmund player then coached by Jurgen Klopp, I asked him: ‘Ciro what is the biggest difference you notice between the Bundes and Serie A?’.

“He didn’t tell me the stadiums, the facilities, the beautiful fields, the money, which is all true anyway, but he told me: ‘Here the gym does not exist. With Klopp we enter the field and do everything with the ball, including the famous works of strength’. Abroad they do almost everything on the pitch with the ball at their feet, including strength work.”

READ MORE: Tears, money, knowledge and expectations – a reflection on Milan’s Champions League return

Tags AC Milan

1 Comment

  1. victor says:

    There is no need to be an expert; just watch a Premier League game and a Serie A game. In England they are pushing the ball forward all the time; in Italy the players so often pass the ball backwards

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