Giuseppe Iachini praised the job done at AC Milan by his former Fiorentina team-mate Stefano Pioli as he appeared at his pre-match press conference on Friday morning, in which he called for the Viola to stay focused on continuing to improve when the Rossoneri visit Florence on Saturday night.
“It’s an important game for both teams,” he said. “We’re focused on our own development, we’re the home team and we want to use the days we’ve had to work together to keep improving and progressing. We’re doing well but we know we still need to get better in defence and when we don’t have the ball. There are details in terms of positioning and reading the game that we need to improve. At the same time, we need to keep working hard on our attacking play and when we do have the ball.”
Iachini went on to speak in detail about AC Milan’s main strengths under Pioli.
“AC Milan are a good side who are stronger now thanks to the work of Stefano Pioli,” he said. “He’s brought in new tactics and a different mentality and way of going about their business. They’re well-organised and in January they brought in players that are making a big contribution, particularly [Zlatan] Ibrahimovic, who is a top player – it’s like he’s got eyes in the back of his head! He does great things, he can score, he can set up his team-mates.
“We’ll need to be organised and focused for the full 90 minutes. On top of the existing squad, which was already very good, they’ve brought in [Ante] Rebic, for whom everything he touches is turning to gold at the moment. We need to be focused across the board, as a team, when we have the ball and when we don’t.”
Asked whether Saturday night’s clash at the Franchi could be a chance for Patrick Cutrone to impress against his old club, Iachini chose to stress the importance of the squad as a whole rather than focusing on individual players.
“The only thing I’m focused on is working with him and with all the other players, in his position and throughout the team, to help them to progress both individual and as a team,” he said. “We have a training session today and another one tomorrow morning, so we’ll look at all the individual and collective concerns and then make a decision on how to set up. The lads are showing me good things in terms of spirit and application – that’s important.”
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