Sacchi explains why he does not support protests of Milan fans: “Have patience”

By Oliver Fisher -

Arrigo Sacchi has stated his belief that the protests from AC Milan’s Curva Sud during the recent games against Genoa and Cagliari were ‘exaggerative’.

The protests from the Milan ultras continued on Saturday night during the 5-1 win against Cagliari as they remained silent and did not show any of the usual flags or banners.

They had done the same against Genoa decided to repeat it six days on, wanting to reiterate their stance that clarity and ambition must come from the management.

Another statement was published by the Curva as part of a fanzine that was distributed ahead of the game and they spoke of their silence being ‘a desperate cry of love’. What that translated into, once again, was a rather eerie atmosphere.

Sacchi spoke during his usual weekly interview with La Gazzetta dello Sport about Milan’s season finale and also the protests from the fans.

Did you expect a season finale like this?

“No. I have to admit that, as civil as it was and this is an aspect that should be underlined, the fans’ protest surprised me.”

What struck you most?

“I understand that the fans directed it at the ownership, to the club. In this way, however, the effect has had repercussions on Pioli and the team. They will finish the season in second place, not in mid-table.

“Could they have done better? Yes, definitely. This season’s Milan was a profoundly renewed team, the coach needed to assemble the players who arrived from the transfer market and create a collective. The result was not always excellent, but Milan still played well good matches and got, I repeat, second.”

The fans protest against the club. They demand it to be strong and successful, we read on a banner…

“The current ownership arrived recently, this was RedBird’s second season with the Rossoneri. Milan today are a virtuous club from an economic point of view, with its accounts in order and this must be recognised. The previous ownership, then, operating in the same direction as the one that took over, it managed to give the fans a Scudetto that had been awaited for 11 years.

“We are talking about a success that came by overcoming teams that had spent more, and in Italy there are at least two or three of them they have always been very important but also demanding, they expect to see the team play well and give everything, but in the history of a club there are also moments…”

What moment is this?

“It’s a phase in which there is a team, Inter, better equipped to win. Milan in recent years won a Scudetto after a wonderful head-to-head with the Nerazzurri, then Napoli and Inter won. I understand that the fact of having lost so many derbies has made the Milan fans suffer, but in the past Inter have also suffered.

“I remember that once, after a derby won by my Milan, the lawyer Prisco came to me and said: ‘If it had been a boxing match I would have thrown in the towel. We lost but without conceding too many goals. And it went well for us, because we didn’t get past the halfway line!’.

“Milan must demonstrate once again their great sporting culture and their love for the club, without being blinded by Inter’s latest successes. We must remember that the club comes before the team, and the team before the players.”

Milan are second, but 18 points behind Inter. Some mistakes were made…

“As I have repeated several times, signing so many foreigners in the last transfer market was a risk, and if Pioli had chosen, the responsibilities would also be his, but I don’t know. Let’s not forget that the decision to close with Maldini and Massara was also it was a move that appears questionable. Now much, if not everything, will depend on the choice of the new coach.”

Which for you should be an Italian?

“If we’re talking about a young man I say De Zerbi, in terms of experience I suggest Sarri. But something else will count more than the profile.”

Which is?

“May Milan decide with conviction and defend their choice. With strength. The same as Berlusconi had with me.”

What do you advise the fans?

“To have patience. To trust the club and support Milan as it always has. You play and win with the collective, and the same goes for the fans: you have to be united with the club.”

In two weekends Milan will play their last match of this season, against Salernitana, and they will do it at San Siro. What climate are you expecting?

“A stadium once again alongside the club. Chants, flags and the public cheering, everything, at Milan’s goal. It will also be Pioli’s last match on the Rossoneri bench, I hope that the fans greet him with respect and gratitude. In recent years he has done an excellent job, he brought the Scudetto back to Milan’s shirts and led the team to the Champions League semi-finals. He deserves only applause.”

Tags AC Milan Arrigo Sacchi


  1. Can this old fart stop talking about foreigners like they are spreading plague or something? Seriously, can he be more xenophobic?

    1. how is its xenophobic to imply that players from abroad often takes time to settle in because they have to adjust to a new environment, culture and learn a new language etc ?
      Nothing xenophjobic in that and you seems to see shadows where there is none.

      1. Strange that it doesn’t happen in any other league, country or culture. Go anywhere else, read any interview or article from other leagues, no mention of that. Then turn to Italy, read what these old farts are saying, and its foreigners this, foreigners that.

        1. But don’t you recognize that foreign players actually has a bigger chance of taking time to adjust ? because imagine yourself moving to a completely new country and having to learn a new language from scratch and settling in while leaving friends and family behind and maybe even wife and kids for a duration of time cant affect adjustment time or even cause homesickness that can also affect performances.

          Not that i take much offense in it but you also call him an old fart which certainly also can be judged discriminatory towards the elderly. The man knows more about the sport and group dynamics than any of us here and if he actually was a xenophobe wouldn’t he then have completely benched Gullit and and Rijkaard at least that would make sense if he was one.

          I didn’t mind the incoming transfers last season by the way but clearly having an italian core helps with the initial cohesiveness of the group of players. That can change over time though.

          1. Every single one of them move their entire families, there is this thing called English that everyone speaks, club also provides interpreters and most have already had a transition from another country so they are not strangers to it at all. These people are professionals, this is part of their job and to imply that they need a year or two to adjust to different climate or cuisine is ridiculous.

            And Sacchi may have been great at one point, but he if you follow his interviews you will see a pattern of him promoting Italian players, Italian coaches and discriminating against everyone else constantly. He is a relict of a time long passed, he belongs to a very different era. In all honesty he is too old and too set in his ways to know better, it is the journalists that keep insisting on interviewing him and sharing his distorted world views that are the problem.

          2. I didnt imply that it would take a year or two but there is certainly potential for some extra bumps on the road and the whole point of adding basically only foreigners in one and same transfer window increases those potential issues. I agree most people nowadays speak english but there is nevertheless still countries where a lot of people still doesnt do that germany, italy and france comes to mind. Professionals are still human beings so its not like they are above human feelings so it can be part of the equation.

            He might be past his prime but i disagree with that narrative in regard of his interviews and ive probably read all of them in the last many years but in the end its not like we have to agree here. In the end though some of the most loved coaches around has basically been inspired by sacchi to some extent, klopp and guardiola included according to themselves so surely he can still have some inputs to offer.

          3. I love how I don’t even have to argue any of my points here, I just have to wait. Everything I said here, ever, was outrageous at first and then religiously regurgitated by everyone that disagreed with me after just few months. About the club, about our management, about Pioli, Calabria, Giroud. I have the luxury of time, and I eventually am proven right, every single time.

            See you on this subject in a few months when you start repeating what I said here word for word.

          4. Shiva What are seriously talking about its not like i agree with you and i wont change my view on this matter but we was just having a conversation so where is the religiously regurtitating,
            I for one despies any religous bs equally by the way but where did i regurgitate what you said because i dont see it as we doesn’t agree on the overall picture ? “you are proven right every time” come on you are starting to sound even more daft here and with less excuses at hand.

        2. “Go anywhere else, read any interview or article from other leagues, no mention of that.”

          LOL. You’ve read every interview and article in every country to be THAT confident to say it. Get real. That happens EVERYWHERE. No matter if you know/notice or not.

          1. “These people are professionals, this is part of their job and to imply that they need a year or two to adjust to different climate or cuisine is ridiculous. ”

            Thinking that moving to another country doesn’t impose any challenges is incredibly naive. Something that even 10-year-olds should recognize.

  2. They don’t speak for every Milan fan just a section.
    The irony in that I’ve been critical of this management’s handling of the club last summer, only to defend them now against this nonsense. Sacchi is right. Patience is needed. The protests are disproportionate to the results and the health of the club. We’re not 12th or 6th, we’re second with something very meaningful to build on. Let’s wait to see what they do in the summer before passing judgement. Are they going to keep their stars and add pieces? Or sell and try to make things whole again? Who knows. But they’ve said they’ve been in sport for a long time. Let them do their work and trust the process. Yes we can criticize here in these comments but as a public facing group I’d be more patient and reserve for when the time is ripe. The new management really only had the one clear summer of their own doing. Can’t believe I’m saying this but relax lol 😂

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