AC Milan director Paolo Maldini felt the need to come out and speak after the 4-0 humiliation at the hands of Lazio tonight.
It was yet another disastrous evening for Milan as they conceded two goals in each half to continue an awful start to 2023, with Sergej Milinkovic-Savic and Mattia Zaccagni netting in the opening 45 minutes plus goals from Luis Alberto and Felipe Anderson adding some gloss to the scoreline.
The result means the Rossoneri are now five games without a win, a stretch which includes a collapse against Roma having been 2-0 up, a Coppa Italia defeat to 10-man Torino and a 3-0 Supercoppa loss against Inter last week.
Maldini fronted up to the media after the game against Lazio to discuss another worrying performance and also the rumours linking Milan with Nicolo Zanioli.
What is the message after a game like this?
“Last year we knew we were fighting for the title, this is a different moment. We are eliminated from the Italian Cup, we lost the Super Cup. We conceded 11 goals in just a few games, it’s a difficult moment,” he said (via MilanLive).
“You spoke of group unity, we must rediscover the team spirit, without thinking of causing disasters. However, we are second in the standings on our own, after winning the Scudetto and returning to the Champions League. The team is within its parameters.”
Should Milan work harder?
“That has never been lacking, we are present at all training sessions and we can testify to it. It happens, it also happened to my Milan, security, trust, distances are lost, it can happen. We know how to go back, but we must not make comparisons with the past. We don’t buy champions, we need to implement a strategy, we have healed the accounts and we will not move from this.”
Was the draw against Roma a turning point?
“Two points lost, a dominated match in which Roma hadn’t been dangerous. That’s where it all started, it’s two lost points. It’s not good but it’s accepted, because Roma are dangerous in those situations. Now we have players returning, a large squad, we know we’re not among the top in Europe, but we qualified for the Champions League round of 16 and it’s a great achievement.”
Is there something missing in terms of numbers?
“We are there in numbers, then Kessie left because he had requests that we could not accommodate. We don’t have the possibility to sign already made players, then the Bennacer-Tonali midfield is of a high level. Romagnoli left but Tomori and Kalulu played in the last 10 games last year. We have lost the distance a little and the game is very clear.”
The defence are making a lot of mistakes…
“At this moment if we don’t score with our first pressure then opposing team becomes dangerous. We find it hard to move together. It’s important to have cover, moving together means never feeling alone, with someone watching your back. They are missing in the last 15-20 days, it can be changed, we did it not too long ago. The psychological aspect determines a lack of quality and choices. You can always concede goals against Lazio.”
The return of Maignan?
“The last exams went well, we expect to have him in February. When, I don’t know.”
Origi, De Ketelaere and Zaniolo ?
“Origi has a four-year contract, De Ketealere five, we don’t judge them after the first few months. Joining a team that works perfectly is easier than a team that isn’t working. Charles is young, he has great skills, it’s a matter of time. Massara has said everything about Zaniolo, we evaluate the opportunities, we don’t hide and we don’t deviate from our plans.”