Pioli full of praise for Thiaw and insists he always had the club’s support – video

By Oliver Fisher -

AC Milan boss Stefano Pioli believes his side created plenty in their win over Atalanta and conceded very little in terms of chances, which is certainly a positive combination.

Milan secured a massive win in front of their home fans on Sunday night as they beat top four rivals Atalanta 2-0 to rack up a fourth straight victory, with an own-goal after a Theo Hernandez rocket volley giving Pioli’s side the lead before Junior Messias sealed the result in the final few minutes.

Pioli spoke to Milan TV after the game to reflect on what was another positive performance from his side, with his comments relayed by MilanNews.

On the match: “We played an excellent match, the boys approached it very well. A very good performance against an opponent who can give you many problems. We were good at conceding little and creating a lot.”

Maignan didn’t have to make a single save: “It’s thanks to the whole team, starting with the forwards. We’re working a lot, this makes the work of our defenders easier, who are very solid one-on-one. Now we have to concentrate because we want to continue further.”

It seems that Milan have a different resilience, demonstrating how much they suffered last month: “It is undeniable that we have suffered a lot, now we are doing a lot to get back to doing the things we believe in. We have to persist with this energy, because if we get into those situations we become a normal team. If, on the other hand, we keep the level high, we become a team that can win all matches.”

In a moment of difficulty, was the choice to play Thiaw dictated by the emergency or because he is more ready: “Malick has always worked well, I’ve always recognised important qualities in him to be a modern defender. I always thought he would become a ‘starter’ at Milan. Against Torino I didn’t have to [start him], I thought he was in good condition and had the right characteristics.

“He is very young but he absolutely must continue like this. It’s easy to maintain balance and serenity when there are two things: unity of the group and the support of the club, of my leaders. These things have never been lacking.”

On Maignan as a playmaker and a leader: “The goalkeeper now has a complete and important role in build-up from the back, especially against opponents like Atalanta. The readings that Mike has are very important. He can be get it wrong from an execution point of view, but he is unlikely to make a wrong choice. It’s very important in such complicated matches.”

Tags AC Milan Milan Atalanta Stefano Pioli
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