Pioli confirms Bennacer absence vs. Lazio and settles Rebic speculation: “There is no case”

By Isak Möller -

On the eve of the clash between AC Milan and Lazio, Stefano Pioli spoke to the media at the usual press conference. After the 3-0 defeat to Inter, he wants his side to bounce back with a win tomorrow. 

Milan and Inter will resume the Scudetto battle this weekend after the Coppa Italia clash mid-week. The Rossoneri suffered a demoralising defeat against their city rivals and thus a positive response will be needed tomorrow evening.

Speaking at the press conference, as cited by MilanNews, Pioli was asked about the loss and what the current condition of the squad is like. He also provided an update on Ante Rebic and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

On the standings…

“We are aware of the path we are taking and of the moment we are living, which is the most electrifying and exciting moment we can live. With five games from the end, we are fighting to win the Scudetto, we are focused on tomorrow.”

On the atmosphere in the locker room…

“I feel like saying that our fans have already won the Scudetto, they are the best. They pamper us, motivate us, stimulate us, and give us energy. Having so many tomorrow can only give us a further boost.”

On Ibrahimovic and Rebic..

“Zlatan is still the beacon of this team. His willpower is indomitable, what he’s doing to be available and to help is exceptional. He did well in training yesterday and will travel with us, as well as Ante who is doing well. We are ready for tomorrow’s match.”

On the Elliott-Investcorp negotiation…

“We are facing an important moment in the league, with a company and a club that is always present. We have a very solid present, the future is not a question to ask me.”

On the attack and on Lazio…

“We are facing a team with important attacking potential, with Immobile being the main man. We have to put in a high-quality performance, we will have to dribble well to find space. What we did up to a minute ago doesn’t count for anything, we’re focused on tomorrow night.”

How did Rebic wake up today?

“There is no case, Ante suffers from chronic knee tendonitis that occasionally wakes up. In the pre-race warm-up, he had already felt something. Fortunately, only two days of therapy were needed, he’s ready to give everything like the others.”

On the attack…

“We have scored less than needed. We have always created a lot, but not converted it. It should not be forgotten that we are first, or second, in the standings. We want to stay there until the end.”

What does Inter have more than Milan and vice versa?

“I don’t know, this is not the situation that interests me. We must try to have something more than our opponents tomorrow. We will find a very motivated team as well as all our opponents, who have played the game of their lives rightly.”

On the physical form of the team…

“We are fine, the physical form is excellent. I remember the reverse fixture well, we had played an important match from a technical point of view and we will have to try to repeat it tomorrow evening.”

How important it is to play immediately after the derby…

“It’s very important, we know that the closer we get to the end of the season, the more the result will weigh heavily. It doesn’t matter if the team is disappointed or otherwise, tomorrow’s match is important and we are prepared as well as possible.”

On the away calendar…

“I don’t think it makes a difference right now. I think quality, motivation and playing matches with aggression should make a difference.”

On Romagnoli to help against Milinkovic-Savic’s aerial play…

“That Milinkovic quality is a Lazio asset, yes, we have always marked him with a midfielder with certain characteristics and we will be able to do it again tomorrow.”

On the defeat in the derby…

“Losing the derby disappointed us and did us no good, but it’s still another competition that cannot influence the Serie A standings. I think we were poor in the key episodes of the match: let’s collect this and try to treasure it.”

On Castillejo…

“He had some physical problems that in the last period prevented him from training continuously. Now he’s better and available.”

On Bennacer…

“He’s growing rapidly and still has margins in both phases. He’s working hard to become an even better player. He will not be available for tomorrow because in the derby, he suffered from an ankle injury and was unable to recover.”

What does it mean to play against Sarri?

“I expect a quality team, well placed on the pitch. They defend by attacking forward. He is a very prepared coach.”

You have changed?

“Yes and it’s normal. Last year at this point, we didna know if we would qualify for Champions League, today we know that we want to try to win this Scudetto. You need to have a warm heart and a very cold head.”

On Brahim Diaz’s position…

“It always depends on the matches and the opponents. The other night Inter were waiting for us and they were tight, there was no space between the lines. It depends on the situation.”

The game is scheduled for 20:45 CEST tomorrow and it should be a great game, especially considering that more Milan fans are expected at the Olimpico than Lazio ones. That is because the home fans are protesting against their president.

Tags AC Milan Lazio Stefano Pioli

1 Comment

  1. I like Stefano but he is so full of BS his eyes are brown. He is afraid to think outside the box, because if any extreme Idea fails then he will get the blame, he will get the blame no matter what if he loses. Fortune favors the bold, those who are not predictable.

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