Stefano Pioli has confirmed that his renewal should be a formality as there is the will of both parties to continue together, explaining his ‘constantly growing’ relationship with the club.
Pioli spoke to MilanNews after he received the Liedholm award this afternoon, named after the legendary ex-Milan player and manager Nils Liedholm and given out to sportspeople who achieve great results but also while showing human values.
What does it mean to you to receive this award and what does Liedholm mean to you?
“Liedholm was a great footballer, a great coach and a great sportsman. Very honoured to have won this award.”
There continues to be rumours that Pioli will soon extend his contract with Milan as Calciomercato.com reported that the management have been impressed with his results, style of play and his hand in helping the project, which is why he will soon renew.
Will there be talk of a renewal soon?
“I am in full harmony with the club, we have found a great synergy in working together. There is the will on both sides to continue working together.”
Are you expecting some reinforcement from January or will you count more on injury recoveries?
“I think we will have to be as good at recovering the players as we are doing. I hope after the break that we will have most of the group at our disposal. The staff is at a high level, we have started the season well but we will have to be good at continuing at this level.”
Do you feel more comfortable at Milan than two years ago?
“I think the relationship between Milan and me is constantly growing. I immediately felt the right energy and I am feeling great motivation. We must be good at continuing to work with this humility and this continuity. Difficult challenges await us but if we have this desire and determination we can do well.”
After the break you will face Fiorentina, a club you worked at before and experienced the Astori tragedy. What memory do you have of Davide and what do you expect from this game?
“Davide had the same values as a correct, wise and generous sportsman. Playing against Fiorentina will not be a normal match for me, it will remain a difficult match against a team that plays well. We will try to prepare them well.”
Where can Milan grow?
“Milan can grow in many situations. We are more aware and mature but we have to find the ability to be a compact team in moments of difficulty in matches and we will have to be more cynical when we can close matches. The team can be perfected.”
Do you see Milan as more mature and what do you think of Napoli?
“The path we have taken and the results of last season have given awareness to the team. Even against the big clubs we have confidence in their own means. Napoli are a great team and deserve the position they have, we have our characteristics and they have the precise qualities ”
Are you afraid of Ibrahimovic’s call-up for the national team?
“I’m happy that Zlatan is on the national team because he’s fine. I’m not afraid of his tiredness, he’s a champion and the match against Spain is far from our next match. The experiences with Zlatan are positive and have made the whole team grow.”
Milan and Inter played out a 1-1 draw at San Siro on Sunday night in what was a fiercely contested Derby della Madonnina with both goals coming in the first half. It was certainly a game where the Nerazzurri needed the three points more than their city rivals as there was a seven-point cushion before the match which ended up being maintained.
Thoughts on the derby?
“It was a beautiful derby, full of emotions and duels. The teams played with great conviction of their means. Inter are a very strong team and they showed it on Sunday as well, but we have grown.”