Pioli: “I have great faith in Piatek; why I scrapped the pre-match ritiro”

By Isak Möller -

On the eve of the clash between AC Milan and Lecce at San Siro, Stefano Pioli spoke to the media at Milanello (via MilanNews.it). Despite the Rossoneri’s recent struggles, the manager is hopeful. 

The win against Genoa wasn’t enough to save Marco Giampaolo job, as Milan decided to replace him with Pioli. The latter has worked with the team since the start of last week, although several players were on international duty for most of the time.

“The schedule is what it is, and the next stop will certainly be a reference, after the upcoming five games. However, the goal is always the next game, and it will always be like this. 

“A manager has to work at 360 degrees. We need to understand each other, my work method is attentive to detail, from recovery to food, all to bring us advantages in the field and to reach our potential,” he began.

Pioli also spoke to about Kris Piatek, who has struggled to find the back of the net thus far, scoring twice from the penalty spot in seven games. However, the 53-year-old revealed that he has ‘great faith’ in the Polish striker.

“The individual talk with Piatek? I’ve always done this throughout my career, it’s important to get into the minds of the players. To Piatek, I said that I have great faith in him.

“If he will play from start? I haven’t decided yet. Usually, when we play in the evening, I decide in the morning. Today will be decisive to understand who should play from the first minute. 

“The ritiro on the eve of games is no longer what it used to be, everyone is using their mobile on their own, so it’s no longer necessary. Therefore, I decided to scrap it, it doesn’t make a difference,” he continued.

Kick-off is scheduled for 20:45 tomorrow evening, and around 50K fans are expected at the stadium to watch Pioli’s debut. Hopefully, his side can claim the three points, as anything else would be a disaster considering the opponents.

“The important thing is to see the right attitude and overcome the difficult moments with compactness and cohesion. There will be many fans and we have a duty to do our best. Tomorrow’s performance will determine my future work.

“Leao? He’s more of a central striker than a winger. He has great potential and many qualities, he’s an important prospect to give us immediate results. Calhanoglu? My choices will be based on the characteristics of the players.

“It’s an honour and pride to be here. If you are the manager of Milan, the thought of playing at San Siro can’t haunt you, it must be an extra motivation. I believe that I’m ready to train at this level,” he concluded.

READ MORE – Preview: Serie A Round 8 – AC Milan vs. Lecce

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