Stefano Pioli appeared to be quite clearly on edge during his post-match press conference after AC Milan’s 2-2 draw against Napoli at the Maradona, a game his side led 2-0 in.
It is certainly not a positive period for Milan, on and off the pitch. A tough week of games against Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain and Napoli saw the Rossoneri collect just one point, which came last night after being two goals ahead.
There seems to be a particularly nervous atmosphere surrounding things, and especially Pioli. First there was the back and forth between the coach and captain Davide Calabria after the match in Paris, then the strong reactions from Olivier Giroud and Rafael Leao after they were taken off in Naples.
As highlighted by Manuele Baiocchini today on Sky (via Radio Rossonera), there was a small sign during Pioli’s post-game presser last night where he showed that he might just be feeling the pressure.
“It is a moment in which Milan are not very lucky, both in terms of results and in terms of injuries. And this also created a bit of nervousness. Yesterday Leao and Giroud would have wanted to stay on the pitch, we saw it,” he said.
There is some calm to be brought back to these 48 hours of rest. Pioli was also nervous, as he got up angrily at the press conference after a question he didn’t like very much and left the press room.”
Pioli seemed to react badly to a question about why he chose to take Christian Pulisic, with the reporter implying he might have withdrawn him by choice rather than by injury even though he was playing so well.
“He came out due to muscle strain, otherwise I would never have taken him off. I may not be a phenomenon at coaching, but I would never have removed a player who was doing so well,” Pioli retorted.
“Your mind would probably have changed, but I understand that what we say doesn’t matter, only the result matters. If Calabria had scored from Jovic’s inspiration you would have said ‘nice change’. Perfect.”