AC Milan’s technical director Paolo Maldini has essentially confirmed that Stefano Pioli will remain as head coach into next season.
Maldini was interviewed by Sky Italia before tonight’s game against Juventus at the Allianz Stadium and discussed a number of different topics, with his comments transcribed by MilanNews and translated below.
On the match: “We are fine, of course, many times this game meant Scudetto. Having made a path like ours, finding ourselves in these conditions is not what we were shooting but now we are there and play.”
Just like back in 2017, the Gianluigi Donnarumma renewal situation has descended into a soap opera. The Italy international has less than two months remaining on his contract, and amid rumours of Juventus interest and exchanges with fans at the training ground, his future at Milan has never been so uncertain.
On Donnarumma: “I saw him concentrated, serene and determined. We must also think about the past of this player who played in the youth teams, he almost broke the record of precocity and never reached an important goal like qualification for the Champions League. He is focused on this goal.”
On the upcoming games: “We play one season, of the other five fighting for the Champions League they have every chance to qualify. We too have destiny in our hands. How do you win? In these cases, experience at high levels certainly helps, but also the fearlessness of young people can give you a hand.”
On Mourinho: “I sent him a message, he replied in a nice way. His arrival is good for Roma, for the league and that it is a stimulus. Finding a coach who makes you find this showcase even more important.”
SportMediaset (via MilanLive) reported earlier in the week that Pioli would be at risk if the team did drop into the Europa League especially after a difficult 2021. The likes of Max Allegri, Maurizio Sarri and Luciano Spalletti are all available and Sarri is one of the more interesting names for the Rossoneri.
However, La Gazzetta dello Sport (via MilanNews) wrote that while a top four finish is in the balance, Pioli’s position is not under question as the utmost confidence in his work continues to filter from Milanello.
The Sky host then said that – as per their information – Pioli’s job is not at risk despite the struggles in 2021 thus far.
On Pioli’s future: “It was not a request from the owners to qualify for the Champions League. Having made a season finale like last year, there were hopes but your reconstruction is absolutely correct.”