Pioli believes Milan are not yet ‘mature’ as he explains formation and selection choices

By Oliver Fisher -

AC Milan head coach Stefano Pioli believes that his side did not defend badly in the derby defeat to Inter but were ultimately left to rue another set piece goal conceded.

Milan went into the game against their city rivals having gone six without a win across all competitions but they were unable to stop that run as they lost 1-0 to the Nerazzurri, making it two defeats to them in less than two weeks.

Inter had been knocking on the door before they took the lead in the 34th minute, and it was no more complex than an in-swinging corner whipped towards the near post that Lautaro Martinez steered goalwards having got himself free.

After the game Pioli spoke to DAZN to give his thoughts on the performance and what was yet another damaging result for his side in their quest for the top four, with his comments relayed by MilanNews.

Surprised by the performance?

“Clearly we wanted to be more compact and we waited more for our opponents. We conceded something and defended badly. We had to dribble more, because we had the chance and we were often outnumbered. We didn’t improve our centre of gravity in the first half. It was a difficult game. We found ourselves unprepared on set pieces once again. We did better offensively in the second half.”

How complicated was it to switch formations?

“It wasn’t complicated. Even the lads worked with the right conviction during the week. Clearly we haven’t been compact and solid in defence lately. We believed that these were the right positions to face Inter. Our mistake it was not being able to dribble and move the ball and this forced us to play a lot of defence in the first half.”

Have you given up your creed?

“As a coach, I have a clear view of the situation. I am certain that if we had played our usual brand of football, we’d have struggled even more tonight. We have lost something from then, we were more solid today and can build on that, but also need to be more aggressive and attacking.”

What must Leao do to become a starter again?

“Leao has enormous potential. The choice to play with two closer strikers was to put Inter’s defence in difficulty. Leao has to be active throughout the game and he’s a player we bet on a lot. The choices I’ve made are the best for what I saw during the week: Leao doesn’t have the characteristics of two vertically close strikers.”

What happened?

“The negative matches have robbed us of our confidence and conviction as it is normal: we are not yet such a mature team, with some absences and others not at their best. We need to start again from tonight even if it is a defeat in the derby and that it hurts morally. But tonight we found solidity and determination that can help us get back to our levels.”

Tags AC Milan Stefano Pioli


  1. Yes Pioli it’s not good losing with big differences, and not rotating adequate.

    You could use more: Vranckx, Thiaw, De Keteleare and Origi (when not injured), and have the same amount the point like now.

    1. Leo-Giroud-rebic
      3-4-3 makes more sense (fullbacks & wingers)
      Theo more attacking freedom and saeler with less attacking responsilities & utilised work rate.

  2. these comments by Pioli were shots fired at ownership for not reinforcing the squad. Lacking defensive solidity, often outnumbered, lacking one on one skills in offense, being unable to move the ball are all synonymous with our team is tired, lacking speed, defensive arial skills, attacking vigour as well as prowess and awareness. All traits that Kessie, Maignan, Ibra and Romagnoli helped with but were not replaced or backed up with reinforcements on the market. Clearly he is saying if we bought players we needed, or kept tge ones we let leave, to at least maintain the level of our starting 11 from last year, we would have been doing better this season but everyone is fried, baked, toasted, done, overworked and the transfer market performance failing, coming up short because of owners lack of investment is are being mirrored on the field

      1. I said he would come out with a load of bollocks . Can anyone tell me what messias was doing I am still trying to figure it out. Glad I am not paying to watch that load of crap.

    1. Pioli should shut up. He has no game or team management at all. Start with
      1. Massias in midfield failed idea.
      2. Giroud and original missing supplied ball from beginning
      3. Bringing Leao after putting him in mental distress
      4. Stupid wring formation
      5. Killing DK after spending 35 million
      6. Krunic first tough game after being shelved 3 months
      6. Goal keeper is so slow. Snail. Brainless
      7. No setting pieces training
      6. No psychological work/ prep at all


  3. It is now abundantly clear that Pioli is an average coach, he is incapable of improving this team and the players, he lacks the conviction to try other players , or other methods, why is it that he discards every new player, and he stifles their quality, look at Lucas Paqueta and the various players he has cast aside, who are now performing in other teams, all the young and new players that were bought this season were starters and performed well at the various clubs they came from, within the space of 8 months he has killed them off, why does he persist with tired and old players, it was a very big mistake by the management to sign both Florenzi and Messias.
    Yesterday’s line up was very odd, you had 3 to 4 other players you could have put in place of Messias, yet he chose Messias who is not worthy of been a Serie ‘a player, the Coach prefers old washed up players.
    It is very evident that the team needs a holding Midfielder in the middle,Bennacer and Tonali simply lack the strength or guile to play that position, for all of Bennacers fighting spirit, he lacks the physical strength and the build to be in that position, unless the Coach gives the new players a chance, we might not even be in the UCL next season .

  4. Who the heck he will try a different formation after 18 months or so …that too in derby and that too when team form is disaster and moral is too low…hahah

  5. Why is Pioli experimenting with different formation? The players are either confused or playing half hearted. It looks like Pioli has ended his journey at AC Milan and a new coach is needed to energise the players with new ideas. I do like Pioli and it’s a pity that he cannot continue to succeed past last year success but that’s football. Look at Inter and Napoli results with changing of the coaches how well they are doing. It’s a nightmare when poor results continue and action is required immediately before all is lost. Forza Milan ….. you can change this bad spell.

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