AC Milan defender Fikayo Tomori believes he and his team-mates can cause problems for a ‘great’ Liverpool side in tomorrow’s crucial game.
The Rossoneri know what they need to reach the round of 16 of the competition as they must first beat Liverpool at San Siro tomorrow night and then wait for good news from Portugal where the match between Porto and Atletico Madrid will take place.
In the event of a draw at the Estadio do Dragao and a Milan win, the Rossoneri will certainly go through, otherwise they must hope for a victory for the LaLiga side by the same or a lesser margin than what Pioli’s men win by.
Tomori was sent up for a press conference on the eve of the sixth and final group stage game of Milan’s 2021-22 Champions League campaign against Liverpool. His words were relayed by MilanNews and we have translated them below.
Is dedicating the qualification to Kjaer one of the many motivations you have?
“Definitely. Simon is a big part of the team, both on the pitch and off the pitch. It is very sad what happened to him. We hope he will recover soon and we hope to complete the mission.”
Tomorrow it will be a do or die game and Milan have nothing to lose. In what spirit do you face it?
“We have to and want to win, it will be a difficult match but we still have the chances to qualify. The mentality must be the winning one and we will go out on the pitch with this spirit.”
You have been with Milan for a year now. Do you feel more important? And how can Liverpool be beaten?
“It will not be easy, they are a team with great intensity and quality. They won the Champions League recently. English football is very intense. Tomorrow’s opponents have had excellent results but we have had a great job, we have to give them a hard time. Liverpool are an exceptional team but we are no different.”
Do you feel ready to lead the Milan defence considering the absence of Kjaer?
“As mentioned before Simon is a great player for the team and in the match against Salernitana we saw how much he misses the field. This phase will be difficult for him but there is no individual personality to lead the defence but we are a team and we play and attack as a collective.”
What will the team’s attitude be tomorrow?
“As a team we have grown a lot in a short period of time. In Liverpool many players were playing for the first time in the Champions League but now we have grown after five games. Now we have to play another game to qualify. We will have to defend well but not just suffer and to also play our game.”
How did you prepare for the game defensively?
“In the last three or four seasons they have scored over a hundred goals a season, I think. They are strong, but teamwork is needed, not just individual. We must all play together and that’s what we want to do, show energy.”
With you on the pitch Milan concede much fewer goals, do you feel you are pivotal to the team’s defensive game?
“I try to give my all for the team, it is true that against Fiorentina and Sassuolo the result was not good, but then came the match with Atletico in which we recovered and I was not there. With regards to not conceding goals, I think that behind these results there is the work of the whole team: I try to do my best, I repeat, but it does not depend only on me or on the other defenders.”
READ MORE: Probable Milan XI to face Liverpool – how the Rossoneri plan to replace Leao