Pioli explains why derby win made him ‘very proud’ and praises Milan players

By Isak Möller -

AC Milan somehow managed to turn the Derby Della Madonnina around as Olivier Giroud scored two quick goals in the second half. It was against the run of play and thanks to the win, the Scudetto race remains alive. 

Ivan Perisic gave Inter the lead towards the end of the first half and Milan struggled to create any chances against their city rivals. In the second half, however, all Giroud needed was two chances and the turnaround was completed.

The Frenchman got the chance from start instead of the injured Zlatan Ibrahimovic and it’s safe to say that he succeeded in the end. Speaking to DAZN, as cited by MilanNews, Pioli shared his thoughts on the important win.

On the game…

“I laughed watching my sprint, I’m no longer old (laughs). But I’m too happy. I have a team that never gives up, guys who want to go beyond their limits. A victory that must give us conviction, knowing that we have the same points as last season and therefore there is still a lot to do.”

What did you say to the team?

“That obstacles become too much only for those who don’t believe Winning a derby against such a strong opponent is a great satisfaction. We must be very happy, but now we are throwing ourselves into the Coppa Italia: On Wednesday we will have a difficult match and we would like to do well.”

On the options in the attacking trio…

“In the first half, we didn’t make the right choices, we didn’t go into the spaces when there was an opportunity. We created many dangerous situations for Inter with our mistakes in that sense. Inter waited a little longer for us in the second half, so we needed a little more freshness and agility: that’s what Diaz did.”

What do you bring with you from this match?

“It’s true that Inter had more chances in the first half, I carry with me the courage of my players who weren’t afraid to face perhaps even superior opponents. To overturn such a difficult game, perhaps not in our best moment… I’m sorry to remember that but our only defeat of the new year did not come only for our demerits.

“Seeing that the team, even in difficulty, maintain this spirit is an important satisfaction. Going down in such an important match, reacting like this and winning against such a strong opponent makes me very proud.”

On Giroud…

“The signing of Giroud, and that the club has included players who have won… Winning, in the long run, means having a great attitude like Maignan, Kjaer, Giroud, Ibra… It helps to raise the level of maturity and attitudes. From the point of view of wills, they are guys who don’t give up and work every day to improve.”

On the changes available and Leao…

“Ibra and Rebic are important resources, I hope to have them available as soon as possible. In my opinion, Rafa could have been a little more open in the first half, he got a little nervous. In the second half, he moved better and we looked for him better and he was more incisive as a player with the qualities he has.”

On Brahim Diaz…

“Having players with different characteristics is an advantage for me. Brahim, and it applies to all players, the quality of the minutes counts and not the quantity. Brahim obviously hoped to start from the beginning, the important thing is to maintain this attitude of availability.”

Albeit with a game in hand, Inter are now just one point ahead of Milan whereas it could have been seven (potentially 10 with the game in hand). The win means a ton for the Rossoneri, therefore.

READ MORE – Player Ratings: Inter 1-2 AC Milan – French duo shines for Rossoneri

Tags AC Milan Inter Stefano Pioli

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