This site will look much better in a browser that supports web standards, but it is accessible to any browser or Internet device.

AC Milan Online | Authentic AC Milan Site v4.0
m e n u || ac milan online home | news | games | club | history | forum | shop | interactive | fanzone | ac milan tickets | live | blog
t o o l s || advertising | bookmark | jobs | recommend | link us | headlines for your site | faq | site map
AC Milan Online | Authentic AC Milan Site v4.0 AC MILAN TICKETS

Check our guide on how to buy AC Milan tickets online and offline! Everything you need to know about buying AC Milan tickets as well as safe and simple online ordering for all matches, including the likes of AC Milan - Inter or AC Milan - Juventus!

AC Milan Online | Authentic AC Milan Site v4.0 AC MILAN SHOP

We've got a guide full of information about the best places to shop for AC Milan items online - shirts, jerseys, training tops, jackets etc., with shopping sites ranked based on the quality they offer to an AC Milan fan. Go read it now at our AC Milan shopping page!

AC Milan Online | Authentic AC Milan Site v4.0 AC MILAN BLOG

Read our AC Milan blog for the best AC Milan related commentary, rants, articles and more.

AC Milan Online | Authentic AC Milan Site v4.0 WHAT'S NEW?

>> ac milan store
>> watch ac milan live
>> live scores
>> wallpapers
>> story

AC Milan Online | Authentic AC Milan Site v4.0 AC MILAN FORUM

Join our growing AC Milan supporters community over at the Red & Black Forums and entertain yourself by discussing AC Milan related topics.

The Archive

February 2014

Balotelli 'a serious doubt'
28.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

CalcioNews24 have described Mario Balotelli as a ‘serious doubt’ to be fit for Milan’s match with Juventus on Sunday.

According to reports on the Rossoneri’s official website, the 23-year-old is again not training with the rest of the squad at the club’s Milanello base.

Instead, he is said to be doing gym work along with Cristian Zapata and Matias Silvestre.

The Azzurri international was forced off during Milan’s Champions League game with Atletico Madrid and did not feature in their win at Sampdoria last weekend.

Rami 'not scared' of Juve
28.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan defender Adil Rami says his side do not fear Juventus ahead of the Serie A meeting between the sides.

The Rossoneri currently sit in ninth place in the table but the Frenchman is convinced Clarence Seedorf’s men can spring a surprise come Sunday.

“I think we can do well against the Bianconeri,” Rami told Sportsmediaset.

“We have changed our mentality and now we have more belief in ourselves.

“If we play the right way on Sunday we can win.

“I want to become a better player under Clarence Seedorf.

“I’m the same as I’ve always been since I arrived at the club.

“I always work hard, try to be polite and have faith in what I am doing.

“Football will bring you up and knock you down before bringing you back up again.”

Taarabt 'never doubted himself'
28.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan attacking midfielder Adel Taarabt says he never doubted his ability even while struggling at Championship side QPR.

The Moroccan moved to the Rossoneri on loan from Rangers in January and has made a promising start to life at San Siro.

“Maybe people weren’t expecting it but I am not surprised,” Taarabt told La Repubblica.

“I know my qualities and I knew that with good teammates alongside me, as I have here in Milan, I would be able to show them.

“Let’s also say that recent circumstances have favoured me!

“I am extremely satisfied with how I have started here.

“Now I have a few months left to persuade Milan to sign me permanently.

“I like scoring but even more than that I like creating goals for others, it’s my speciality.

“It’s just that at Milan so far I have played on the left and right, not in my best position which is in the middle behind the striker.

“And I have never defended as much as I have been, using up a lot of energy!”

The 24-year-old was then asked to compare Serie A to the English leagues.

“The technical level is no different,” he replied.

“The difference is the attitude of the teams at the bottom of the league.

“In Italy they defend but in England they still try to attack.

“English fans would never have accepted it if their team defended in the same way as Bologna did against us, for example.”

Montolivo: AC Milan needed a jolt
28.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Riccardo Montolivo says that whilst he is grateful to Max Allegri, Milan ‘needed a jolt’, and that replacement Clarence Seedorf will ‘become great’.

The Rossoneri made the managerial switch in January and have since seen form in Serie A take an upturn.

Ahead of this weekend’s home clash with League leaders Juventus, Montolivo has reflected on how it was a necessary step.

“In recent months, the atmosphere at Milanello was not as serene, the team needed a jolt,” explained the midfielder in today’s edition of the Gazzetta dello Sport.

“I am grateful for Allegri has given me so much and he wanted me at Milan.

“Seedorf is a Coach who is very communicative, he is attempting to get all his concepts across and in the most direct way possible.

“Cohesion and even balance within the group are the aspect which he is looking to more.”

Seedorf has overseen a formation change to a 4-2-3-1, where he has spoken of looking to introduce six attacking players on to the same field.

“If the interpretation of the formation is that which we saw in Genoa [away to Sampdoria last weekend], that’s great.

“There are a few problems, however, if the midfielders are distinctly offensive.

“Going from three midfielders to two completely changes the way you play. Beyond this, when a Coach changes then the atmosphere is given that shock, and right now the difference is in that.

“Seedorf is destined to be a great Coach, with an important career, but he has just started - we need to give him the chance to go wrong.”

Montolivo considered the weekend challenge against the Old Lady.

“Against the Bianconeri was probably the most beautiful day since I have been at Milan. Last year at San Siro, when Abbiati was ruled out, I found the captain’s armband on my arm. It was the first time.

“We need a victory against a big team, for reasons relating to the table, but also for our self-esteem.

“And with Juventus it is the right night in which to do it.

“We know that we have the capability and quality to play a great game and to cause them trouble.”

Kaka eyes Juventus 'derby boost'
28.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Ricky Kaka has labelled Milan’s clash with Juventus as an ‘international derby’ that represents a valuable three points for the Rossoneri.

San Siro will host Week 26’s clash between the traditional title rivals, with Juve currently leading the table and Milan sat in ninth position, 31 points behind.

Despite the disparity, the game is eagerly anticipated and represents a real opportunity, according to Il Diavolo’s Brazilian playmaker.

“The game against Juventus is a derby of Italy, an international derby, games that are felt deeply by us as players, by you in the media and by the fans,” Kaka has told Sky Sport Italia this week.

“All week you live waiting for this derby. We hope to be able to write another small page in the history of Milan, to say: ‘We played a great match against a great team’.

“For us, the three points are very important for the table but also on an emotional level and for our growth.

“To beat Juve would give us a great boost for the end of the season. This Juventus is very strong, they have great talent and are doing well.

“Clarence Seedorf? Now it is a good moment, we can see the light. We are on the right track.

“He has his own way and is very particular. He has taken a bit of everything and now has his own style, he is trying got put into practice his own philosophy and his work.

“I am a person who has trust for the relationship that we have.”

“Antonio Conte? I do not know his way of working, but, he has something special, because to win the League three years in a row is not easy, you have to have something special.

“I’m also a bit curious to know his secrets, I like being on the outside, but then to better judge him I would need to be with him every day.”

Kaka returned to Milan last summer after four years away at Real Madrid.

“After what happened with Manchester City [who had a rejected bid in 2009], I saw that the club had opened the door to the possibility of my sale, more or less I knew that I would probably be sold.

“These things happen, and from it came a beautiful time, I had in Madrid a very special experience, whilst it will remain in the history of Milan that I went away and returned four years later.”

Guida for AC Milan - Juventus
27.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mauro Bergonzi will officiate Roma-Inter and Marco Guida has Milan-Juventus this weekend.

The referees for Serie A Week 26 have been assigned and there are some very big games.

It has been a particularly tense last few days due to controversy over the Turin Derby and Fiorentina’s anger at Andrea Gervasoni.

He is rested this weekend along with Juventus-Torino referee Nicola Rizzoli, but Bergonzi is given the Roma-Inter clash on Saturday, while Guida will officiate Sunday night’s Milan-Juventus.

Roma-Inter (Bergonzi)

Cagliari-Udinese (Valeri)

Atalanta-Chievo (Celi)

Genoa-Catania (Irrati)

Verona-Bologna (Tommasi)

Sassuolo-Parma (Tagliavento)

Torino-Sampdoria (Damato)

Livorno-Napoli (Mazzoleni)

Fiorentina-Lazio (Banti)

Milan-Juventus (Guida)

Nesta joins Montreal Impact staff
27.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Alessandro Nesta has started his new career as part of Montreal Impact’s staff after hanging up his boots.

The former Lazio and Milan defender retired from playing in October, but has decided to stay in Canada at his last club.

Nesta joins the technical staff as a consultant, primarily viewing video footage of games to provide scouting reports.

“Alessandro knows the players well, the coaching staff and the philosophy of our club,” said Sporting Director Nick De Santis.

“He’ll help the coaching staff throughout the season, principally as a video analyst, providing scouting reports on our games and those of our opponents.

“We hope that this experience will be beneficial for him, knowing that he wants to become a head coach.”

Taarabt wants long AC Milan stay
27.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan attacking midfielder Adel Taarabt says it is a dream come true to play for the Rossoneri and that he wants to stay at the club.

The Moroccan international has impressed while on loan from English side Queens Park Rangers and hopes that this is just the beginning of his time at San Siro.

“I’ve done everything I can to feel part of and welcome at the club,” Taarabt told L’Equipe.

“And at every level, people here have tried to make me feel at home.

“Seedorf has shown his faith in me and I feel good because of it.

“It’s a dream to be at Milan and I hope that this is only the start of a great adventure.

“I have four months now to convince the club to sign me, because I want to stay here.”

Balotelli doubt for AC Milan
27.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan forward Mario Balotelli’s involvement in this weekend’s match against Juventus has today been placed in further doubt.

SkySport24 are reporting that the 23-year-old is not training with the rest of the squad this afternoon at Milanello, due to the fact he is still feeling pain in his right shoulder.

The Azzurri international was forced off during last week’s Champions League game with Atletico Madrid with the problem and did not feature in Sunday’s win at Sampdoria.

Bonera: 'Juventus match will be benchmark'
27.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan defender Daniele Bonera thinks his side’s upcoming game with Juventus will be an important benchmark in their development.

The Rossoneri have been in good form of late and the 32-year-old believes the match against the defending Italian champions will be a good stepping stone on their journey under Clarence Seedorf.

“Recent results have been positive and have brought back some confidence,” Bonera told the Milan Channel.

“We have begun a journey that we know will be a long one and on Sunday we will face an important and difficult test.

“We want to continue on our journey of growth.

“The only bad thing about the game with Atletico Madrid was the result.

“We need to reproduce that performance and every player needs to be in the best possible condition.”

'Taarabt future up to him'
27.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Queens Park Rangers assistant manager Joe Jordan says the future of Adel Taarabt depends on what the player wants.

The Moroccan is currently on loan at Milan from QPR and the Scot believes any permanent move would be down to the player and the Rossoneri to discuss.

“It doesn’t depend on us,” Jordan said to “You need to be asking Milan and Taarabt.

“The possibility of singing permanently for Milan is down to the player, who has these next few months to experience and then evaluate his adventure in Italy.

“He is a player of great talent and ability who can score goals and create assists.

“He is now showing this at Milan.

“I think he has realised the great opportunity he has been given to go to a prestigious club like Milan. “Because of this he has been looking to make a good impression from the first possible moment.”

Rossi: Taarabt something different
27.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Paolo Rossi sees Adel Taarabt as the potential difference maker in attack for Milan this season, “to take the burden away from Mario Balotelli.”

Taarabt arrived at San Siro in January on an initial six-month loan deal and in a handful of appearances so far, has done enough to impress former Rossonero forward Rossi.

“Taarabt seems to me to have changed the inventiveness that was there before,” the 57-year-old World Cup winner began to Sky Sport Italia.

“He is a different player to the others. At Milan in midfield they are very similar, good at handling, but with no-one to change the pace.

“So, he takes away the burden of responsibility to do that from Balotelli, not every game can be determined by Balotelli.”

De Jong: Four or five years more
27.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Nigel de Jong has indicated his desire to stay at Milan for four to five more years, before a return to Hamburg.

The midfielder is midway through a second season with the Rossoneri and, whilst his current deal expires in June 2016, he is eyeing a future past that point at San Siro.

“I want to try and stay at Milan for another four or five years,” began De Jong to Bild, before commenting on the possibility of a return to Hamburg.

“I have a lot of time for that club. And I have always liked it in Germany…”

De Jong also discussed his side project, running a luxary car dealership that can list such clients as Lukas Podolski, Mesut Ozil, Sami Khedira, the Boateng brothers and Nuri Sahin.

“If you look at where we started, then I must say that it is going really great. In the beginning the focus was just on footballers, in recent times we have begun to do business. We want to keep expanding.”

Balotelli and De Sciglio fit for Juventus?
26.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan have been given good news regarding the fitness of Mario Balotelli and Mattia De Sciglio ahead of the weekend.

The pair had been struggling with injuries going into this Sunday’s clash with League leaders Juventus.

However, according to Corriere dello Sport, the diagnosis on Balotelli’s shoulder knock and De Sciglio’s ankle sprain are both good.

The paper reports that Clarence Seedorf will find out on Thursday whether the duo will be fit to face the Bianconeri, but early indications are that both will play.

Inzaghi: AC Milan are growing under Seedorf
26.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan Primavera boss Pippo Inzaghi has backed the first team to beat Juventus at the weekend.

The Rossoneri host the League leaders at San Siro on Sunday, but the former striker, whose Under-21’s crashed out of the UEFA Youth tournament on Tuesday to Chelsea, reckons Clarence Seedorf’s men will claim three points.

“I’ve seen a lot of growth in Milan,” he told reporters. “The Rossoneri are going very well at the moment.

“Sure, Juve are a much stronger team – one of the best Italian teams ever, but I’m curious to see how it’ll go on Sunday.

“Well are fit and doing well at the moment, so it’s going to be interested.

“Will Juve suffer after playing in the Europa League on Thursday? Let’s hope so!

“Europe usually takes a lot of energy out of the players, so let’s hope Milan can take advantage of that.”

Davids denies AC Milan rumours
26.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Edgar Davids has once again denied claims that he will join Clarence Seedorf’s coaching staff at Milan.

The former Rossoneri and Juventus midfielder has been linked with a position in the background at San Siro.

But the former Netherlands international has insisted that is not the case, but has backed his countryman to succeed.

“No, I have not heard anything about that,” he told TuttoJuve. “But it isn’t true that I will work with him and be part of his staff.

“Clarence is a Coach who can boast a wealth of experience as a player.

“I think he has all the right qualities and knows how to get the best out of his players.

“I think he’s going to become a great manager.”

AC Milan out of UEFA Youth League
26.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan are out of the UEFA Youth League after losing 4-1 to Chelsea this afternoon.

The Rossoneri’s Under-21 made it through to the Last 16 of the youth equivalent of the Champions League after finishing second in their group.

But Pippo Inzaghi’s men have crashed out at the first knockout stage, losing to the Premier League outfit.

Goals from Jeremie Boga, Alex Kiwomya and a double from Lewis Baker gave the Blues the win, whilst Andrea Petagna netted the consolation for the Diavolo.

Diego Costa: Atletico to fight until end
26.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Atletico Madrid forward Diego Costa has promised that his side will fight until the end both in La Liga and in Europe.

Milan’s Champions League opponents have hit a worrying slump in form that has seen them knocked out of the Copa del Rey and fall back behind Real Madrid and Barcelona in the title race, though they do lead the Rossoneri after the first leg of their tie.

“We have the responsibility to fight for the league and Champions League until the end,” Costa said to ExtraTime.

“We did not get to where we are simply by chance.

“Our dream must continue.”

Seedorf: 'I want players to enjoy themselves'
26.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan Coach Clarence Seedorf says that more than anything else he wants his players to enjoy and express themselves on the pitch.

In an in-depth interview with Gazzatta dello Sport, the Dutchman also said that offensive tactics in football did not really exist.

“I want the players to play, laugh and enjoy themselves,” Seedorf said. “I never get too annoyed if there are any mistakes.

“I need to show them that above everything that they have done well.

“Even if it’s only for ten minutes, then great, it can become twenty, then thirty, and eventually a whole match.

“You journalists are so passionate about tactics and systems, you talk about it for hours!

“But do you know what the truth is? That in modern football there are only systems for the defensive side of the game.

“In attack there is total fluidity, six players who move and interchange constantly without there being an out and out reference point.

“Because of this, questions about our style of play annoy me!

“I have a plan and it is simple, I want my children to live in a better world than this.

“That is why my foundation, Champions for Children, exists, to educate through sport.

“And sport as a whole, not just football, is a fantastic point of reference for us adults too.”

Seedorf then gave a telling insight into the character of Mario Balotelli.

“Mario, in reality, is a very kind, sweet and sensitive person who feels burdened with enormous responsibilities that are actually not his.

“We should take those off him, and maybe even free him from feeling like he has to be a symbol.

“We must give him back his sense of self-worth and allow him to develop as a person.

“This includes allowing him to make mistakes.

“Only this way will he become a complete champion. That day will be a victory for me and for everyone.”

The Dutchman was also asked about the various Coaches he worked under.

“I started with Van Gaal, a distant memory,” he replied. “I appreciated Ancelotti, Lippi and Capello massively.

“Fabio was the man who transformed me.

“Under him I stopped running round the pitch in search of glory, he gave me a position and above all the conviction that helped me become a leader.

“The three Italians definitely had something extra.”

Berlusconi: Honda already a reference
26.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Barbara Berlusconi says she is aiming to ‘innovate’ at Milan, as she explains that Keisuke Honda is already a point of reference in the dressing room.

The club director and daughter of President Silvio Berlusconi is working alongside Adriano Galliani at San Siro and seen to be leading a change of line behind the scenes.

“My main goal is to try to innovate, because clubs are now actual companies and football is a business,” considered Berlusconi to Vogue Japan.

“I want to show that I am available to the people around me, and not behind a closed door.

“In football, there is no difference between people, no social differences, no racial differences, there are no political differences nor economic differences.

“Football allows everyone to be the same - a manager who lives in London may suffer and despair as much as a child in Soweto, those who live in Lima or the workers on a Tokyo subway.”

The 29-year-old Swiss-born executive also spoke on January’s Japanese arrival Honda, and his impact so far at the Giuseppe Meazza.

“We believe that he is a player who can make a difference. We needed a playmaker that was adaptable from a tactical point of view.

“Milan had followed Honda for a while and he is a playmaker that responds to this need.

“In addition to this, within a few days he has become a point of reference for others in the dressing room.”

Serginho: AC Milan can get Juve result
26.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Serginho believes that Milan are capable of getting a result next weekend against Juventus, in a game ‘more difficult’ than that with Atletico Madrid.

The Rossoneri are looking in early March to overcome a one-goal deficit to Los Colchoneros in the Champions League Last 16 second leg, at the Vicente Calderon.

Before that, though, they host Juve in the League in Week 26, which is a more difficult challenge, according to their former Brazilian full-back.

“Juve are playing a spectacular championship, with champions that are making a difference,” began Serginho this week on Milan Channel.

“Milan-Juve is a game that will test this Milan, more so than Atletico, but the Rossoneri are capable in difficult games and draw strength, all quality players like to play in these great games.

“The Champions League? Against Atletico, we saw a Milan that were more careful, they controlled the game but had some bad luck.

“In fact, the result was unfair for me, Milan did not deserve defeat. Atletico stayed in defence and were waiting for the counter-attack.

“If Milan can play in Madrid the game they did at San Siro, then for me they can progress.

“Atletico are a dangerous team, in Milan they were generally sitting back and waiting for the break, but Milan are a team where the shirt means a lot to me and if we can maintain our concentration on the game, we can get a result in Spain.”

Serginho was asked of his two former teammates currently working at Milanello as Coaches - Clarence Seedorf and Pippo Inzaghi.

“Clarence is finding his way to have the team playing in the manner that he wants for next season. He is currently looking for smarter ways to use the players that he currently has.

“He has arrived at a team with no motivation and has found confidence in certain players was not there, and that is the main factor to creating a great team.

“We knew that Inzaghi would be a Coach of great quality, because I have never seen another player follow from Serie A to Serie C the Italian League and who knows the characteristics of all the players, which is key to becoming a great Coach.”

Essien: AC Milan life going good
26.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Michael Essien has considered his early adaptation to Serie A and revealed that Clarence Seedorf personally convinced him to join Milan.

The Ghana international moved across to the Rossoneri from Chelsea during the January transfer window and is a handful of games into his career in Italy.

“Milan is good and I am settling in nicely which is important,” Essien began in conversation this week with

“Everyone is friendly at the club and are looking after me well so I can’t complain. It's all good and once I get to know the city and people very well, I am sure I will enjoy it more.

“Yes [a lack of first team football at Chelsea] was one of the reasons I moved, but more importantly the Coach at Milan personally called me and showed that he wanted me as part of his project and that was important for me.

“I had always said I will like to play for Milan at some stage in my career so when the opportunity came up I grabbed it with both hands.

“I am enjoying Serie A at present from the games I have played in and watched from the bench. It is different to the Premier League in terms of pace and some of the tactical awareness and play and I am sure there is more to be learnt in the weeks and months ahead.

“I knew the boss before coming here and have found him to be exactly as he has always been. Always calm and he knows his stuff too. Together with the team we will do well and go places, I am sure of that.”

Pazzini suffers nose injury
26.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan will be without Giampaolo Pazzini for a couple of days after he sustained a nose injury.

The striker started in Sunday’s 2-0 victory away to Sampdoria and received a blow to the face.

This evening the Rossoneri released a statement confirming he dislocated the cartilage in his nose.

The dislocation was reduced by specialist Professor Renato Gaini and Pazzini will be able to train with his teammates again after two days.

Kaka: We can make Europe
24.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan attacking midfielder Ricky Kaka maintains his team can still qualify for Europe via Serie A this season.

The Rossoneri won 2-0 at Sampdoria yesterday and now lie five points off rivals Inter, who occupy the final Europa League place.

“I believe we can get into Europe, but we’re taking one game at a time,” Kaka told GazzettaTV.

“Things are changing, we are playing well and if things go well on the pitch the results will come too.

“I like Seedorf, he is a good Coach.

“He has his philosophy of working and in the last few games it has shown.

“Honda needs patience, he has arrived from Russian football which is very different to Italian football.”

The Brazilian was then asked about his chances of making his country’s World Cup squad.

“I need to do well with Milan, then on 5th May we’ll see if my name is on the list for the Brazil squad.”

Pazzini thanks Sampdoria fans
24.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan striker Giampaolo Pazzini has thanked the Sampdoria fans who applauded him in yesterday’s match between the two teams.

The 29-year-old enjoyed a two year spell at the Genoa club and was pleased with both the reception he got and his current side’s 2-0 victory.

“I again want to thank the Sampdoria fans for their applause and for the warm reception they always give me,” Pazzini wrote on his official Facebook page.

“Yesterday was an important win against a good team, congratulations to everyone.”

Pazzini suffered a broken nose during the match against his former side.

“My nose does not feel great but later we’ll do some tests and we’ll decide what to do,” he said.

Kaka: 'AC Milan going to Calderon to win'
24.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan attacking midfielder Ricky Kaka was in buoyant mood following his team’s 2-0 success at Sampdoria on Sunday.

The Rossoneri are in good form in Serie A but must overturn a one goal deficit in the second leg of their Champions League tie with Atletico Madrid to progress to the quarter-finals.

“It was an important win,” Kaka said to SkySport24.

“Even those who hadn’t played that much before yesterday did well and we are all happy.

“We are now starting to reap the rewards of the work of Clarence Seedorf.

“Now we’ll see what happens in Europe, what is certain is we are going to Madrid to win.”

Saponara: 'AC Milan work bearing fruit'
24.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Riccardo Saponara believes the work done by Milan since the appointment of Clarence Seedorf is starting to bear fruit.

The Rossoneri won 2-0 at Sampdoria on Sunday and the attacking midfielder was pleased with his side’s performance.

“I think we gave a good performance yesterday,” Saponara told “If we hadn’t played well at Samp we would have had problems.

“However we are working very well and it is starting to bear fruit.

“But the journey is only just beginning, we must improve a lot in some areas both as individuals and as a team.

“With the passing of time we will play even better.”

The 22-year-old then commented on his own individual prospects and form.

“I can’t I would have liked to play more,” he said. “But in hindsight I acknowledge I did not get myself into the right shape for the boss to call on me.

“It was difficult for the boss to pick me. It was not Allgeri’s fault, he made the choice he thought was right.

“Now I am training with continuity and I have refound my form and fitness.”

Galliani: Europa League? We're calm
24.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adriano Galliani has suggested that Milan are back on track, whilst they remain calm amid talk of Europa League qualification.

The Rossoneri’s improved form of late has seen them close the gap on the teams above them in the table.

Whilst a 2-0 win at Sampdoria has the team sitting five points behind Inter, who currently hold the last defined Europa League qualification spot, their Vice-President and CEO has reflected that they are not getting carried away.

“Calm, we are very calm,” Galliani has reflected to the Gazzetta dello Sport today.

“We are running through the second half of the season with good figures, so far we have 13 points from six games, we have finally returned to our average.

“And against Sampdoria I saw a good Milan.”

Balotelli a Juve doubt, Pazzini...
24.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mario Balotelli reportedly remains a doubt to make Milan’s clash with Juventus next weekend, whilst Giampaolo Pazzini has a broken nose.

Balotelli is reported today as still uncertain to make the Rossoneri’s Week 26 meeting at home with the Bianconeri, for his continued recovery from a shoulder injury sustained last midweek against Atletico Madrid.

Causing the Italy international to skip the weekend win at Sampdoria, reports have it that Milan’s medical staff will only make a decision on his availability for next weekend just ahead of the fixture.

Meanwhile, Pazzini is also heading into that clash with an injury to take care of, having suffered a broken nose during the Rossoneri’s match at Marassi yesterday.

Medical staff have worked to reduce the 29-year-old’s injury and he is seen as in contention to be available to face the Old Lady, but is seen as likely to have to wear a protective face mask.

Also, it is suggested that Robinho could make his return next weekend after more than two weeks out with a thigh injury.

Serie A: Sampdoria 0:2 AC Milan - goals/highlights
23.2 || webmaster

Mihajlovic angry with Maxi Lopez
23.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Sampdoria Coach Sinisa Mihajlovic was furious with the manner of Maxi Lopez’s sending off and refused to blame the officials for his side’s loss to Milan.

The Serb also admits his team were second best in their home defeat by Clarence Seedorf’s men.

“I don’t normally comment on refereeing decisions,” Mihajlovic told Rai Sport. “If Doveri saw something it’s useless to protest.

“I can fault my players as far as effort and commitment goes but Milan were just the better team.

“Maxi Lopez’s red card makes me very angry, my player cannot get himself sent off like that.

“You cannot make a gesture like that.

“It is not on to lose your concentration, the referee knows what he must do but we cannot let that affect us.

“Anyone can lose a game but we need to look at how it happened.

“Today it happened with us giving our all.”

Seedorf: AC Milan good in all aspects
23.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf has heaped praise on his side following their 2-0 away win at Sampdoria, insisting it was a complete performance.

The Dutchman has had a good start to his tenure at San Siro but is refusing to get carried away.

“The most important thing is that the squad grows, then the results will help us a lot,” Seedorf said to Sky Sport.

“These three points will give us mental strength to take forward.

“Today we were good and compact and I must also congratulate Sinisa for how he gets his players to play.

“It was a good day for Milan in all aspects, in defence and in attack.”

The Champions League winner was then asked about the upcoming game with Juventus and the form of several of his players.

“Juventus are doing great things,” he commented. “We have one week to prepare for the game, we are at home and we want to beat them.

“Our improvement is just a matter of time, today we managed to get continuity in our play aout on the pitch.

“Taarabt knows how to play in all the roles behind the striker, we are very happy with what he is doing.

“You’ve asked me the same question for three weeks about Pazzini and Balotelli!

“We only have two central strikers and I can’t yet give Petagna the responsibility of substituting one of these players.

“We now need to take it game by game and then we’ll see where we are at the end of the season.”

AC Milan lose 'most successful' title
23.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan can no longer call themselves the most successful club in the world, as they are beaten by an Egyptian side.

President Silvio Berlusconi and CEO Adriano Galliani often trotted out the phrase, based on their 18 international trophies.

It can also be found written on the jerseys and on the side of the official team bus.

It was a record matched only by Argentina’s Boca Juniors, but as of last night this is no longer accurate.

Egyptian side Al Ahly won their sixth African Super Cup, which means they have 19 international trophies to their name.

It is now likely Milan will have to change their motto to ‘The most successful club in Europe.’

Al Ahly now top the world charts with 19 trophies, followed by Milan and Boca Juniors on 18, Independiente 16, Real Madrid 16 and Barcelona 14.

Real Madrid want De Sciglio
23.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Carlo Ancelotti and Real Madrid have reportedly set their sights on Milan’s ‘new Paolo Maldini’ Mattia De Sciglio.

According to Spanish newspaper AS, Ancelotti has told his directors to make a bee-line for the young full-back.

Having turned 21 in October, De Sciglio grew up in the Milan youth academy and already has eight senior Italy caps, while he’s expected to be in the World Cup squad.

Often referred to as the heir to Maldini, he can play right-back or left-back, plus right or left midfield when needed.

He has suffered from injury problems this season and is out for several weeks after Emiliano Insua’s horror tackle in the 1-0 Champions League defeat to Atletico Madrid.

Serie A: Sampdoria 0:2 AC Milan - match report
23.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Scorers: Taarabt 12 (M), Rami 58 (M)

Adel Taarabt and a controversial Adil Rami goal gave Milan the 2-0 victory, but 10-man Sampdoria were furious.

Sinisa Mihajlovic and Clarence Seedorf were teammates at Marassi in 1995-96 and now found themselves going head-to-head as Coaches with a friendly hug on the touchline. The Dutchman was eager for a boost after Wednesday’s 1-0 Champions League defeat to Atletico Madrid, but had a lengthy absentee list including Christian Abbiati, Mario Balotelli, Mattia De Sciglio, Daniele Bonera, Robinho, Stephan El Shaarawy, Cristian Zapata, Valter Birsa, Matias Silvestre and Bryan Cristante. Samp were fresh from a 3-0 loss to Roma and had Daniele Gastaldello and Lorenzo De Silvestri suspended, so had to reshuffle on the flanks.

Giampaolo Pazzini faced his former club and had a great chance when springing the offside trap, but his lob was cleared off the line by Shkodran Mustafi.

Milan did get their goal moments later. Adel Taarabt’s powerful header on an Adil Rami cross was beaten away from point-blank range, but the former QPR man was quick to tap in the rebound for his second Serie A goal.

Manolo Gabbiadini tested Marco Amelia after fancy footwork to shake off defenders, but Riccardo Saponara was inches away from scoring his debut Serie A goal with a right-foot volley on Kevin Constant’s cross that was over the bar.

Maxi Lopez came on against his former club, but Milan doubled their lead in controversial circumstances. Junior Da Costa went to catch a Taarabt cross, but collided with Pazzini and it kept going for Adil Rami to nod in at the back post. Sampdoria were furious, feeling it was a foul on their goalkeeper.

The Blucerchiati were further incensed when Amelia rushed off his line to kick a Maxi Lopez pass away from Eder in the penalty area, catching the Brazilian on his way through.

Maxi Lopez was shown a second yellow card for taking his protests too far, heightening the tension at Marassi. Gabbiadini risked a straight red for his mistimed tackle on Taarabt.

Eder thought he’d put Sampdoria back into it when he got on the end of a deflected Renan cross, but Amelia bravely parried with his ribs from point-blank range.

Eder and Keisuke Honda both had headers off target in the final stages, while Amelia pulled off one last save on Eder.

Sampdoria: Da Costa; Fornasier, Mustafi, Regini, Costa; Palombo, Obiang (Maxi Lopez 56); Gabbiadini, Kristicic (Renan 80), Wszolek (Soriano 46); Eder

Milan: Amelia; Abate, Zaccardo, Rami, Constant (Emanuelson 75); Montolivo, Muntari (Essien 64); Honda, Saponara (Poli 57), Taarabt; Pazzini

Ref: Doveri

Sent off: Maxi Lopez 72 (S)

Trio monitoring Marchetti
21.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Federico Marchetti is increasingly linked with a move away from Lazio, with Napoli, Milan and Inter all suggested destinations.

The goalkeeper has dropped out of the first team picture at the Stadio Olimpico in recent weeks, due to a persistent groin injury.

However, coupled with Etrit Berisha’s form in his place, speculation continues to suggest that Marchetti is actually going to be heading out of the club come the end of the season.

Whilst Lazio are seen as listing Marchetti with a price of €15m, La Repubblica say that Napoli, Milan and Inter are all monitoring the situation.

This is in spite of the fact that the Rossoneri are strongly linked with picking up Michael Agazzi from Chievo on a Bosman and that the Vesuviani have Mariano Andujar signed as Pepe Reina’s replacement for next summer.

The Nerazzurri’s interest is believed to be in case they lose Samir Handanovic, who is still attracting speculation with Barcelona.

Leboeuf: Balotelli is unmanageable
21.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Former World Cup winner Frank Leboeuf has labelled Milan forward Mario Balotelli as ‘unmanageable’ and ‘a kind of poison for the group’.

The striker is a leading figure on the pitch for the Rossoneri this term and for the Italian national team, but has not impressed the former Chelsea defender.

“Balotelli is unmanageable, he is a kind of poison for the group,” began Leboeuf to RMC Sport this week.

“On Wednesday I saw the match against Atletico Madrid in the Champions League and the authority of Seedorf has been damaged.

“He almost did not want to come off after the shoulder injury, the Coach was forced to almost reprimand him.

“I find this attitude very annoying, even for the Italian national team - he has a great talent, but he is difficult to insert into a group.”

Taarabt: AC Milan is a dream
21.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adel Taarabt has revealed that life at Milan for him is ‘a dream’, and that he could not sleep after making his Champions League debut.

The creative midfielder was a late arrival at San Siro in January from Queens Park Rangers, signing on a loan deal after cancelling a similar, unsuccessful arrangement at Fulham.

For the 24-year-old, the surprise surrounding his move to the Rossoneri is one he shares, as he tries to reflect on life at the club so far.

“I have been here for 10 days, for me this is a dream. I have spent here the best 10 days of my career,” Taarabt has enthused this week to RMC Sport.

“I have trained three times with the team and played in a wonderful stadium like that at Napoli. Then, at home to Bologna in another magnificent stadium. And then on Wednesday I played my first match in the Champions League.

“It has been a dream for me. When I signed up, I always said that I believed in my qualities and I thought I had everything to play for Milan.

“It is true that this has surprised people because I did not play at Fulham, but now I am here. I am making my way and will try to earn a place in Milan.

“Everything is amazing, Milanello is exceptional. In the dressing room there are so many great players. The Coach is Clarence Seedorf, who played 13 years in Milan and has won everything here.

“San Siro is exception. This week was my first match in the Champions League and I played in the Last 16, I could not sleep that night.”

Taarabt was asked who has helped him settle in at Milanello.

“I’m close to Rami, we have the same Moroccan background, we also speak Arabic. But the one who has helped me most is Mexes. I did not know him, but he has really helped me so much.

“I consider him as an older brother. Even if he does not play, he is a great professional, always encouraging everyone. When Rami scored against Torino, he was the first to celebrate.”

US preseason for AC Milan
21.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan, Inter and Roma have been confirmed as participating teams in next summer’s preseason tournament, the International Champions Cup.

In the second edition of the friendly competition, the three Italian teams will pit their wits against Manchester United, Manchester City, Real Madrid, Olympiacos and Liverpool.

Split into two groups, Milan will face up to Olympiacos, Man City and Liverpool, whilst Roma and Inter will meet each other and also Real Madrid and Man Utd.

Fixtures will be played over July 24-August 4 across 11 cities in the United States, with all but Milan’s clash with Olympiacos and Madrid’s meeting with United already set.

Inter, Milan and Juventus took part in the inaugural edition of this preseason tournament last summer, which was won by Real Madrid.

International Champions Cup fixtures

Milan-Olympiacos - TBC

Roma-Manchester United - July 26, Denver

Inter-Real Madrid - July 26, Phoenix

Man City-Milan - July 27, Pittsburgh

Olympiacos-Liverpool - July 27, Chicago

Inter-Man Utd - July 29, Washington

Roma-Real Madrid - July 29, Dallas

Liverpool-Man City - July 30, New York

Roma-Inter - August 2, Philadelphia

Man City-Olympiacos - August 2, Minneapolis

Real Madrid-Man Utd - TBC

Liverpool-Milan - August 2, Charlotte

Pool A winner-Pool B winner - August 4, Miami

Balotelli out for 10 days
20.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mario Balotelli will be out for at least 10 days, while Mattia De Sciglio’s ankle injury requires more tests.

Milan released a statement after the two players went off during last night’s 1-0 Champions League defeat to Atletico Madrid.

Balotelli was clutching his shoulder after a nasty fall and tests today ruled out lesions, but it will still rule him out for 10 days if there are no complications.

De Sciglio limped off following a mistimed Emiliano Insua tackle and tests confirmed a sprain and bruising of the left ankle.

The prognosis will be made after more evaluations over the next few days.

Sacchi sees AC Milan improvement
20.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Former Milan Coach Arrigo Sacchi has added to the general positive reaction towards Milan’s performance against Atletico Madrid last night.

The 67-year-old won two European Cups while at San Siro and voiced his opinion that the Rossoneri are heading in the right direction despite their defeat.

“For the first time this season Milan played like a team, at least for 50 minutes” Sacchi told Radio24.

“Seedorf has added balance to a team that previously wasn’t balanced.

“Were they unlucky? Misfortune is a name given to the ambitions of others.

“Milan at the moment are a team with many individuals but with little sense of collective.”

Gattuso 'would coach' Inter
20.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan legend Rino Gattuso says he would be willing to consider offers to coach the Rossoneri’s rivals Juventus and Inter should they come along.

The former Sion and Palermo boss enjoyed a 13 year stay at San Siro as a player but explained that he could not allow previous loyalties to influence his decisions.

“I will always be a Milanista,” Gattuso told Gazzetta dello Sport. “But I would be willing to listen to offers to coach other teams.

“As a player I would have said no to both Juventus and Inter but as a Coach that wouldn’t be professional.”

Maxi Lopez has AC Milan in sights
20.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Sampdoria forward Maxi Lopez is desperately hoping to be fit in time to face one of his former clubs, Milan, at the weekend.

The 29-year-old picked up an injury just days after scoring the winner in his side’s derby with Genoa and is eager to return.

“I’m doing everything I can to be back from the injury,” Lopez said to Tuttosport.

“I will try to make it until the end, but without taking any risks. I want to make it for the Milan game.”

The Argentine was then asked about his experiences of his loan spell at San Siro.

“I was great because I had the chance to play with champions like El Shaarawy and Ibrahimovic,” he explained.

“It’s a shame about the injuries I got there but on the whole it was a positive experience.”

Blunt trauma for Balotelli
20.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mario Balotelli is set for tests today by Milan medical staff on a shoulder injury picked up against Atletico Madrid.

The forward fell heavily on his right shoulder after a challenge by Diego Costa during the second half of the Rossoneri’s 1-0 defeat to Atleti in the Champions League Last 16 first leg.

Balotelli soon had to be replaced due to the complaint and post-match, initial indications are that he has suffered a blunt trauma to the shoulder.

The 23-year-old is set to undergo tests in the coming hours to ascertain more accurately any damage suffered and prognosis.

Tests on De Sciglio ankle
20.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan full-back Mattia De Sciglio has suffered a suspected bruised and sprained ankle from a challenge by Atletico Madrid’s Emiliano Insua.

The Argentine caught his opponent with a heavy tackle during the first half of Milan’s Champions League Last 16 first leg defeat to Los Colchoneros.

Suffering discomfort afterwards, De Sciglio was soon after forced to be replaced by Ignazio Abate and initial reports indicate that the 21-year-old has suffered a bruised and sprained ankle.

Further tests at the San Carlo hospital to confirm the player’s injury and his prognosis will be carried out during the course of Thursday.

Courtois, Godin: Tie not over
20.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Thibaut Courtois and Diego Godin are in agreement that Atletico Madrid’s Champions League tie with Milan is far from over.

Atleti take back to the Vicente Calderon a 1-0 advantage from the first leg of this Last 16 clash, thanks to Diego Costa’s header in the second half at San Siro on Wednesday evening.

Whilst handing them an advantage and the away goal, two of their number are clear that the contest is far from decided.

“We have to be careful and play like we did here,” goalkeeper Courtois told UEFA’s official website post-match.

“We cannot say the tie is finished because it will be another hard game – they will come to Madrid trying to push hard to score a goal.

“We have to try to keep another clean sheet in order to qualify for the quarter-finals.”

For centre-back Godin it is a similar message: “Is it over now? Not at all. We really respect our opponents and there is still the return leg to play, so it's not over at all.

“Yes, we have an advantage because we have home advantage now but the tie is still open and we will have to work hard to reach the quarter-finals.”

Kaka: We can still progress
20.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Ricky Kaka has outlined Milan’s belief that they can overcome a first-leg Champions League deficit to Atletico Madrid.

The Rossoneri were hit with a 1-0 defeat at San Siro in the first leg of their Last 16 meeting with Diego Simeone’s outfit, but their Brazilian forward says that spirits are not broken.

“Of course we were left with a bitter taste in our mouths, because we gave a very good performance, with the right spirit,” began Kaka post-match to UEFA’s official website.

“Unfortunately, we did not manage to score. We created a lot of chances so we are disappointed, but also confident we can still secure qualification in Madrid.

“When I hit the bar in the first half? In that moment, I saw the ball connect really well so I thought it was going in.

“Instead it hit the bar and soon after [Andrea] Poli’s header struck the post as well. If we had scored from one of those occasions, the match would have been different.

“[Thibaut Courtois] is an excellent goalkeeper and Atletico are a very strong team. They are doing extremely well in the Spanish Liga, they are top alongside two extraordinary teams in Barcelona and Real Madrid.

“So they have proved they are a quality side. In my opinion, the qualification is still open, even if I admit it will be very difficult.

“We must win in Madrid, against a great team like Atletico, but looking at our display tonight I think we have a good chance of doing it.”

Seedorf: 'Proud of AC Milan'
20.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf is “proud” of Milan’s performance despite the 1-0 home defeat to Atletico Madrid.

“I think everyone saw what the lads did on the field. I am proud of what they did,” the Coach told Sky Sport Italia after the first leg of the Champions League Round of 16.

“In the last 20 minutes we lost our intensity and Atletico started to get closer, even without creating that many chances.

“We were a little unlucky with the goal, but I saw some very good responses in the first half.”

Mario Balotelli went off with a shoulder problem after a nasty fall and was seen leaving the stadium with heavy strapping.

“I thought Balotelli did a lot of good things tonight, worrying the defence and creating chances. He is growing and it takes time for all the forwards to get to know each other better, as they aren’t quite in sync yet with this system.”

Milan must now win at the Vicente Calderon in the second leg on March 11, but Seedorf remains optimistic.

“The Calderon is a fiery atmosphere, but that stadium knows me too. I had some good times there! We’ve shown we have the utmost respect for Atletico, doubling up on the marking and remaining aggressive throughout.

“The San Siro crowd gave us a big hand, as I knew they would on a Champions League night. I say the players and fans have every right to be optimistic and to believe.

“I’m so proud at their hard work, the willingness to learn and the unity, which was behind all my success in my career. Even if there are harsh words occasionally, they are done with positive intentions. These are the foundations on which to build some great football.”

Bonera: 'AC Milan did everything to win'
19.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Daniele Bonera insisted Milan “could not have done more” after their 1-0 home defeat to Atletico Madrid.

The Rossoneri hit the woodwork twice and had penalty appeals in the Champions League Round of 16 tie, but were beaten by a late Diego Costa header from a corner.

“We could not have done more,” defender Bonera told Mediaset Premium.

“We deserved to take the lead, but were penalised by a set play. In the first half we pushed really hard and were in good shape.

“It’s true we need to grow in terms of overall performance, but tonight the team did everything possible to win this game.”

Poli: 'AC Milan deserved more'
19.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Andrea Poli hit the upright and felt he deserved a penalty, so was impressed with Milan despite their defeat to Atletico Madrid.

“On my header, the goalkeeper performed a great save,” he told Mediaset Premium after a 1-0 home defeat in the Champions League Round of 16.

“I have regrets, but Milan should not feel bad about this performance. We made Atletico Madrid struggle and in the second half we fell away, as it was tough to maintain that tempo.

“Today everyone ought to applaud the team. We want to go through to the next round and we can achieve that in the second leg.

“We wanted to take control of the game and tested it out in training. We all played well and deserved something more tonight.”

Poli should’ve had a penalty in the first half when he was kicked while lining up a volley.

“I asked the referee, but he smiled and said there was nothing there. The player who kicked me actually said: ‘Are you crazy?’ to me! These things happen and I don’t like commenting on them.

“The important thing is to underline the positive approach Milan had tonight. I repeat, we want to go through and we have every chance of doing it.”

Taarabt: 'Almost perfect game'
19.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adel Taarabt insisted “it’s not finished” after Milan’s 1-0 home defeat to Atletico Madrid.

“Is it finished? No, I don’t think so,” the Moroccan told Sky Sport Italia after the Champions League Round of 16 tie.

“We put in a great performance, tactically almost perfect, and we were just unlucky on the incidents. In the second half we ran out of energy a little bit and should’ve scored a goal.

“Now we know it is going to be very difficult, but we are going there to score.”

Taarabt scored on his debut for the Rossoneri and played well in the first half tonight.

“I arrived from a different League and am very happy to be playing for Milan. The Coach put a lot of faith in me and I scored straight away against Napoli.

“I think my performances have been good, but it’s just a shame about the result.”

Champions League: AC Milan 0:1 Atletico Madrid - match report
19.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Scorer: Diego Costa 83 (A)

Milan hit the woodwork twice and had penalty appeals, but it was Atletico Madrid who won 1-0 at San Siro.

Clarence Seedorf is the first player to win the Champions League for three different clubs, but this Round of 16 first leg tie was his debut in the tournament as a Coach. He took on Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid without Cristian Zapata, Robinho, Stephan El Shaarawy, Valter Birsa and Bryan Cristante, while Riccardo Montolivo and Sulley Muntari were suspended. Kaka shook off an ankle injury to start with Adel Taarabt and surprisingly also Andrea Poli in a more advanced role. The Spaniards had Tiago, Filipe Luis and Javi Manquillo injured.

The visitors got off to a strong start, but on 14 minutes Kaka curled a magnificent effort from the edge of the box that was deflected to smack against the crossbar.

Milan rattled the woodwork again moments later, as Adel Taarabt whipped in a free kick from the right for Poli’s glancing header, but it was brilliantly fingertipped on to the base of the far post by Thibaut Courtois.

The tension escalated with a touchline brawl following a mistimed Emiliano Insua sliding tackle on Mattia De Sciglio. It earned a yellow card and an early end to the game.

On 30 minutes Balotelli’s backheel flick set up Kaka, whose finish grazed the top of the crossbar with Courtois stranded.

Substitute Ignazio Abate did well to ancitipate Diego Costa, preventing him from tapping in from six yards. Milan had penalty appeals for a clumsy Raul Garcia challenge on Poli, kicking him in the back of the leg as he was shaping up for the volley, but the referee waved play on.

Before half-time Balotelli earned a free kick and booking for Mario Suarez, then curled just wide following a poor clearance. Abate also went into the book for a mistimed challenge on Koke.

Raul Garcia had a shot charged down after the restart and Diego Costa’s acrobatic volley was well over, while Taarabt’s effort was smothered and a Kaka scuffed finish skimmed the far post.

Michael Essien turned his header wide from a corner and a couple of long-range Balotelli free kicks hit the wall. Taarabt had an attempt charged down in the box and Abbiati eventually blocked a Raul Garcia low drive on the counter after initially spilling.

Balotelli was clutching his shoulder after a Diego Costa foul and eventually went off for Giampaolo Pazzini.

Atletico Madrid had a great opportunity ballooned over the bar by Raul Garcia, who had got in front of Adil Rami.

In the final minutes, Atletico Madrid found a breakthrough in a familiar scenario for the Rossoneri. A corner was not defended properly and Diego Costa was allowed a free header at the back post. Abate only flicked it on and Diego Costa got in front of Rami.

Milan tried to fight back, but Rami’s fierce free kick whistled wide and the French defender was later booked for bringing down Diego Costa and Gabi hit the resulting free kick against the wall.

In the other Champions League tie, Bayern Munich won 2-0 away to 10-man Arsenal thanks to a Toni Kroos curler and Thomas Muller header. There were two penalties in the first half, but Mesut Ozil’s was saved and David Alaba hit the upright, but goalkeeper Szczesny was sent off for bringing down Arjen Robben in that incident.

AC Milan 0-1 Atletico Madrid

Scorer: Diego Costa 83 (A)

Milan: Abbiati; De Sciglio (Abate 26), Rami, Bonera, Emanuelson; Essien, Poli (Constant 85), De Jong; Kaka, Balotelli (Pazzini 78), Taarabt

Atletico Madrid: Courtois; Juanfran, Miranda, Godin, Insua; Arda Turan (Cristian Rodriguez 74), Mario Suarez, Gabi, Koke; Raul Garcia (Adrian Lopez 80); Diego Costa

Ref: Proença (POR)

Champions League: AC Milan vs. Atletico Madrid - lineups
19.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

AC Milan: Abbiati; De Sciglio, Rami, Bonera, Emanuelson; Essien, De Jong; Poli, Kaka, Taarabt; Balotelli

AC Milan bench: Amelia, Mexes, Abate, Constant, Zaccardo, Pazzini, Petagna

Atletico Madrid: Courtois; Juanfran, Miranda, Godin, Insua; Arda Turan, Mario Suarez, Gabi, Koke; Raul Garcia; Diego Costa

Atletico Madrid bench: Aranzubia, Alderweireld, Cristian Rodriguez, Sosa, Diego, Adrian Lopez, Villa

Tassotti explains Poli pick
19.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan assistant manager Mauro Tassotti explained why Andrea Poli starts against Atletico Madrid and their aims for tonight.

The first leg of the Champions League Round of 16 tie kicks off at 19.45 GMT.

“As soon as Clarence Seedorf got the chance to know Poli a little better, he gave him an important chance,” Tassotti told Sky Sport Italia.

“He did very well against Bologna and is an important player who can also help us out in midfield.

“Atletico Madrid play as a team, so it’s going to be a complicated game. We must be very wary of Diego Costa and his way of creating space.”

The assistant manager to both ex-Coach Massimiliano Allegri and now Seedorf was asked whether the Dutchman’s all-attack approach would be adjusted.

“He knows that even if the result is 0-0, that still leaves qualification open for the second leg. He knows it is important not to concede a goal.

“Clarence has been working for a month introducing new players and it is not easy.”

Sacchi on AC Milan and Atletico
19.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Arrigo Sacchi cast his eye over tonight’s Milan-Atletico Madrid Champions League clash.

The first leg of the Round of 16 tie kicks off at San Siro at 19.45 GMT. Sacchi was at the helm of both clubs during his career.

“Atletico Madrid are a great team, spectacular and play football based on very clear ideas,” Sacchi told Spanish newspaper Marca.

“I was particularly impressed with their performance at the Bernabeu against Real Madrid in the Liga, where they really deserved to win.

“I don’t think there are other teams in Europe as organised as Atleti, as they work as a team with a high tempo and Diego Costa is a great hitman. His grit and hard work is impressive, both when attacking and defending.

“Perhaps they don’t have the same ease of passing in attack, but can keep pressure up on their opponents.

“Milan are not going through a particularly good spell, but they have players who can change the course of a game at any moment.”

Champions League: AC Milan vs. Atletico Madrid - match preview
19.2 || webmaster

Clarence Seedorf is making his Champions League debut tonight as a manager after winning the competition four times during his career as a player, twice with Milan and once with Ajax and Real

Madrid each. While this isn't a great moment for AC Milan the team always did its best in the Champions League and tonight vs. Atletico it will be no different.

The match kicks-off today, 19:45 CET, and is the 1st leg of a 1/8 finals clash. The Rossoneri are considered 14/5 outsiders despite playing on home turf, while Atletico are favourites with best odds at 5/4 according to


Robinho, Zapata, Cristante, Birsa and El Shaarawy are all out injured while Keisuke Honda is Cup tied. Fortunately for the team, new signing Adel Taarabt and Primavera sensation Andrea Petagna are

available and ready to help.

Kaka and Abate have been called up despite injury issues and the midfield couple of Riccardo Montolivo and Sulley Muntari is suspended..

The called up squad reads as follows:

Abbiati, Amelia, Coppola, Abate, Bonera, Constant, De Sciglio, Mexes, Rami, Zaccardo, De Jong, Emanuelson, Essien, Kakà, Poli, Balotelli, Pazzini, Petagna, Taarabt.


On the other side, Simeone's Atleti is currently unbeaten in the Champions League, finishing top of its group with 5 wins and 1 draw.

Atletico will be missing left-back Filipe Luis, midfielder Tiago and Javi Manquillo, all due to injury problems.

Atletico squad:

Aranzubia, Courtois, Godin, Alderweireld, Gimenez, Juanfran, Insua, Miranda, Arda, Cristian Rodriguez, Gabi, Mario, Koke, Raul Garcia, Sosa, Diego, Adrian, Villa, Diego Costa.


AC Milan (WLWDLW) - this is the worst Serie A season for the Milanese club since the times of Oscar Washington Tabarez; the team is currently placed 9th in the table. Ever since Seedorf took over,

Milan earned 10 our of 15 points, second only to Juventus.

Atletico (WLLLW) - contrary to Milan, Atletico is enjoying its best season - if we are to exclude the Europa League triumphs - of the club since last winning the title in the 90s. The team is joint

top and tied on points in Primera with Real Madrid and Barcelona. Ex-Inter man Diego Simeone is definitely 'at fault' for this and it's worth noting that the team has last reached the knock-out

stages of the Champions League during the 2008-2009 season (1/8 finals) and during the 1997-1998 season (1/4 finals).


Milan (4-2-3-1): Abbiati; De Sciglio, Rami, Bonera, Emanuelson; de Jong, Essien; Poli, Kakà, Taarabt; Balotelli.

Atletico Madrid (4-4-2): Courtois; Juanfran, Miranda, Godin, Insua; Koke, Suarez, Gabi, Turan; Raul Garcia, Diego Costa.

Referee: Pedro Proenca (Portugal)


AC Milan - Mario Balotelli will be looking to shed criticism with a stellar performance tonight.

Atletico - Diego Costa is undoubtedly the team's main attacking weapon and they will want to 'deploy' him as accurately as possible.


The two teams never met before.

Milan lost its last 4 knock-out ties against Spanish teams.

Milan's last victory againsts a Spanis side was 2-0 vs. Barcelona one year ago.

On the other hand, Atletico won their last three matches against Italian teams.

Milan has the lowest posession of all remaining teams in the Champions League this season - 38.6%.

Milan has the best defense in the CL, along with Chelsea and Man Utd - only 3 goals conceeded.

Diego Costa scored 4 goals in his last 3 CL games.


AC Milan win - 14/5
Atletico win - 5/4
Draw - 23/10
Diego Costa to score first - 7/1
Balotelli to score first - 6/1

Koke: San Siro won't faze us
19.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Atletico Madrid youngster Koke has insisted that the atmosphere at San Siro will not faze his side.

The Spanish team travel to face Milan in the first leg of their Last 16 Champions League clash this evening.

But the midfielder has claimed that despite the Rossoneri’s history, his men won’t be intimidated.

“Milan have a lot of history in this competition but we must never be afraid,” he told the club’s official website.

“We are used to the Calderón and other major stadiums, so the atmosphere of San Siro will not bother us.”

Galliani: Inzaghi going nowhere
19.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan director Adriano Galliani has claimed that as long as he’s at the club, Pippo Inzaghi is going nowhere.

The former striker guided the Rossoneri’s Primavera side to the Viareggio Cup on Monday, beating Belgian side Anderlecht.

And with rumours circulating now and in the past that he could leave for a Serie A job soon, the board member has insisted that the ex-forward is not leaving San Siro.

“As long as I’m here Inzaghi is not leaving Milan,” Galliani told Gazzetta dello Sport.

“Anyway, he has a contract until 2016.”

Gabi: 'Atletico respect AC Milan'
19.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Atletico Madrid captain Gabi assures they have “a great deal of respect for Milan” ahead of tomorrow’s match.

The first leg of the Champions League Round of 16 kicks off on Wednesday at 19.45 GMT.

“We have a great deal of respect for Milan,” said Gabriel Fernandez in today’s Press conference.

“Of course, then we’ll have to see what happens on the pitch. We have worked very hard to get here.

“Serie A is a very interesting League with many competitive teams.”

Atleti Coach Diego Simeone is no stranger to San Siro, having played for Milan’s rivals Inter.

“We saw the goals he scored over his career against Milan. Hopefully one of us can celebrate like him tomorrow.”

Simeone: 'Atletico are not favourites'
18.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Atletico Madrid Coach Diego Simeone insists his men “do not feel like favourites” against Milan in the Champions League.

San Siro hosts the first leg of this Round of 16 tie on Wednesday at 19.45 GMT.

“Tomorrow it will be an open game where anything could happen,” the former Catania boss said in his Press conference.

“I don’t want to make predictions, but this tie will be important ahead of the second leg. I expect to see a great Milan and above all I fear their history, which on nights like this can really count. We’ll be facing a great rival.

“We do not feel like the favourites and must prove our strength on the field. It won’t be easy, because the Italian teams always make the most of their scoring opportunities. We will need intensity and concentration.”

Simeone also scoffed at suggestions Milan would be defensive on home turf amid an injury crisis.

“I expect both sides to play attacking football. We must do well in defence to ensure they don’t get scoring opportunities, as they have good forwards and are dangerous on the counter-attack.”

It is a return to the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza for Simeone, who played for Milan’s rivals Inter.

“I had extraordinary years here, so I have many memories and friends in Milan, but tomorrow the only thing that counts is the way my team plays. It will be wonderful for my lads to play in a stadium like this.”

AC Milan squad for Atletico Madrid
18.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf has named his 19-man Milan squad for tomorrow’s Champions League tie with Atletico Madrid.

It kicks off at San Siro on Wednesday at 19.45 GMT, the first leg of a Round of 16 clash.

Keisuke Honda is cup-tied, while Adel Taarabt and Andrea Petagna are given their shots at a Champions League debut.

Ricky Kaka and Ignazio Abate are included despite injury concerns, but Robinho, Stephan El Shaarawy, Cristian Zapata, Valter Birsa and Bryan Cristante are on the treatment table.

Riccardo Montolivo and Sulley Muntari are suspended.

Milan squad for Atletico Madrid: Abbiati, Amelia, Coppola, Abate, Bonera, Constant, De Sciglio, Mexes, Rami, Zaccardo, De Jong, Emanuelson, Essien, Kakà, Poli, Balotelli, Pazzini, Petagna, Taarabt.

'No contact for Stam'
18.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

The agent of fomer Milan defender Jaap Stam has denied there has been any contact from the Rossoneri regarding his client.

With current Assistant Coach Mauro Tassotti to leave San Siro at the end of the season, there has been growing speculation that the Dutchman has been lined up as a replacement.

“There has been no contact with Milan,” Henk Van Ginkel told Tuttomercato.web. “He gets a lot of offers, he is extremely highly valued.

“But he also has a contact at Ajax and he is happy in Amsterdam.”

Balotelli 'own biggest critic'
18.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mario Balotelli says he does not allow journalists’ criticism to affect him as he himself is his own biggest critic.

The Milan forward will line up for his side in tomorrow night’s Champions League tie against Atletico and is relishing playing regular football again.

“I am very critical of myself,” Balotelli said at the pre-match Press-conference ahead of the game.

“It doesn’t bother me when journalists criticise me because I will already have done it myself.

“I am very happy to be able to be playing. Last year when I was watching from the sidelines I suffered slightly.

“Now I hope to be able to help the team.

“Am I a champion? I think I am a good player.

“I am a striker, but I would be willing to play in goal if it meant winning the Champions League!

“I want to help the group and win. In games like the one tomorrow there is something different.

“I didn’t score in the group phase because I didn’t play that much.

“I have never scored against a Spanish team because they are all tough sides. Maybe I can start now.”

The 23-year-old also paid tribute to new Coach Clarence Seedorf.

“It’s like having another teammate,” he explained. “Things are coming more easily for me now.

“He’s like a big brother.”

Seedorf: 'Berlusconi very knowledgeable'
18.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan Coach Clarence Seedorf has praised the role played by club President Silvio Berlusconi at San Siro.

Ahead of the Rossoneri’s crunch Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid, the Dutchman paid tribute to the healthy relationship he enjoys with the former President of the Republic.

“We have a very supportive President,” Seedorf said at his pre-match Press-conference. “He listens and speaks, he is an intelligent man and he knows how football is played.

“The President is very knowledgeable about the evolution of football, he likes the idea of playing with two attackers.

“I on the other hand like four or five! At the moment we have two, Pazzini and Balotelli.”

The Dutchman is relishing taking charge of his first ever Champions League game tomorrow evening and says the support of Rossoneri fans could be critical to his side’s chances of success.

“It is emotional, but it really is about living for the present,” he explained. “Maybe tonight I won’t sleep.

“I can’t wait to experience the Champions League as a Coach, then I’ll be able to tell you more about it!

“Everyone is going to treat this match as a special occasion.

“Everyone wants to take part and win and I expect a great atmosphere at San Siro like we have always had.

“The team is coming into the game in good shape, against a very good team.

“We will look to give our best and try to get the best possible result.

“The team has grown gradually since I arrived. The Champions League is a special competition where so many other factors have to be taken into consideration.

“I am satisfied with what we have done this week to prepare for the match.

“Our fans are always with the team, during this match they will be the 12th man.

“These are the nights that players dream of experiencing when they are children.

“We have the belief we can win, but it will be difficult.

“There is no way it will be decided tomorrow, there are two matches to play.”

The Coach then commented on the condition of Kaka.

“He’s still not at his best physically. We are assessing him and we hope he can recover.

“But if not we have other solutions.”

Finally, Seedorf assessed his team’s opponents.

“Atletico are very strong and we must respect them a lot.

“They have had two defeats against Real Madrid. They are an organised outfit and I have great respect for them.

“Diego Simeone has had a great journey as a Coach, I congratulate him.

“I wish him all the best, though not tomorrow and in two weeks time!”

Tassotti to leave, Stam in
18.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

The Gazzetta dello Sport reiterate that Mauro Tassotti will almost certainly leave Milan as assistant Coach in the summer, with Jaap Stam his replacement.

Tassotti has served in his current role with the Rossoneri for over a decade, but has been increasingly reported as set to see out his contract until the summer and then to move on to pastures new.

Amid the speculation, the 54-year-old, say the Gazzetta dello Sport today, is believed set to talk with Adriano Galliani in the coming weeks for clarification on his future.

It is believed that current Ajax assistant Coach Jaap Stam is moving ever closer to agreeing to come in as Tassotti’s replacement under Seedorf from the summer.

Hernan Crespo is also seen as still in contention to take a coaching role back at Milanello from June, so if Tassotti were to reach agreement with the club to remain, it is reported that his role will likely be reduced significantly.

Seedorf targeting Atletico faults
18.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Ahead of facing the Press, Clarence Seedorf has outlined Milan’s motivation to take advantage of Atletico Madrid’s weaknesses this week.

The Rossoneri host Atleti tomorrow evening in the first leg of their Champions League Last 16 tie still in a redevelopment phase under their Dutch tactician.

Even with this and Atletico’s strong form this season to take into account, Seedorf is in a buoyant mood ahead of the midweek meeting.

“The team comes into this challenge well, against an opponent that is very well,” began the 37-year-old in his pre-Press conference chat with Milan Channel.

“There are further motivations, it is the Champions League, they are strong, in addition to it being a special evening at San Siro. But there will be so many opportunities in front of us to collect something.

“Atletico have to be respected greatly, they are a strong team, but they also have their weaknesses, which we will try to exploit. We will try to give our best, looking for the best result.

“The quality and the understanding will increase over time. The attitude has been the right one, except in the evening with Napoli [a 3-1 defeat].

“We must try to continue on our way, improving in all aspects. With great humility, the boys are trying to improve.”

Milan are celebrating the youth team winning a ninth Viareggio title under Pippo Inzaghi yesterday.

“We congratulate the Primavera, bravo Pippo! I spoke with him yesterday, congratulations to them all.

“As for us, we are on the eve on a game that will tell us many things.

“There must not be too many emotions, we want the right balance so as to express ourselves better.”

De Sciglio: 'AC Milan to be protagonists'
18.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mattia De Sciglio has outlined that whilst ‘Atletico Madrid are a strong team’, Milan hold ambition to ‘be protagonists’ tomorrow.

The Rossoneri host Atleti in the first leg of the Champions League Last 16 on Wednesday evening, with the Spanish arriving in a much healthier domestic situation than their San Siro opponents.

Even in acknowledging the strength of Diego Simeone’s side, full-back De Sciglio believes that Il Diavolo will not sit back this week.

“It's a very difficult game and we'll try to do our best,” the 21-year-old has told the Corriere della Sera today.

“They are very good to recover the ball and then on the counter-attack, so we'll try to lose fewer balls as possible.

“Diego Costa and David Villa are strong, Arda Turan is the player who impressed me most of all. He gives to his team quality and quantity.

“Atletico are a strong team but we want to be the protagonists.”

The youngster was also asked for a soundbite on Milan’s new Coach Clarence Seedorf.

“He is a winner, he has new ideas and a different mindset. Our goal? We want to arrive as high as possible, so we still have to work on and improve.”

Ancelotti talks Atletico with Seedorf
18.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Real Madrid Coach Carlo Ancelotti has revealed he has offered tips to Milan counterpart Clarence Seedorf ahead of facing Atletico Madrid.

The Rossoneri will host Atleti in the Champions League Last 16 first leg on Wednesday evening and their Coach has received some advice from one of Milan’s former number, now in charge of Atletico’s city rivals in Spain.

“Yes I have met with Seedorf, he is a friend,” Madrid boss Ancelotti has told the Corriere dello Sport today.

“He asked me for some information on Atletico Madrid, but he knows perfectly how to deal with them.

“Atletico plays in the image and likeness of their Coach, Simeone. And they are strong, compact, hard, they have the mentality of a fighter.

“They are hard to deal with, they do not offer you anything. Milan must pay attention to the counter-attacks and set-pieces.

“Clarence is not fearful, I believe he is completely set for the role of Coach. He has great ideas. It takes a little patience, but Clarence will be able to get what he wants.”

Ancelotti commented on a number of strikers past and present in the game.

“Jese Rodriguez is a crazy talent that is not yet 21. Pato was like him.

“Higuain? He is one of the best strikers in the world.

“Balotelli? His talent should be used with great professionalism.

“Inzaghi? He will be a great Coach.”

Berlusconi to dine with AC Milan
18.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Silvio Berlusconi will hold lunch with Clarence Seedorf and the Milan squad today, ahead of their Champions League meeting with Atletico Madrid.

The Rossoneri are preparing to host Los Colchoneros tomorrow evening in the first leg of their Last 16 clash.

Reports are that those preparations will include a lunch meeting with club President Berlusconi at the training quarters at Milanello on Tuesday.

Berlusconi last dined with the squad ahead of December’s League meeting with Roma, but last met with Seedorf just last week, reportedly to assure him of his confidence in his early work with the struggling outfit.

Inzaghi: Future down to AC Milan
18.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Pippo Inzaghi says that he realises he will one day leave Milan’s primavera, but he isn’t thinking about it now and, the club will have their say.

The 40-year-old has been working since retirement as a Coach in the youth levels of the Rossoneri and yesterday successfully took the primavera outfit to victory at the Viareggio Youth tournament.

Previously linked with replacing Max Allegri as senior Coach, the former striker was also the subject of interest last month from Sassuolo, only for Milan to reject their advances.

For the learning tactician, Il Diavolo will continue to have a say in his future.

“Milan did not want me to talk and it was closed,” responded Inzaghi on the issue once more to today’s edition of the Gazzetta dello Sport.

“I have not forced anything. Milan has given me everything. I would never go against them. I have accepted a plan of work - a year with the juniors, two with the primavera.

“Faced with a major project, if Milan agree, then I would consider it. Otherwise, I will complete the plan. Milan cares also about my professional growth. When I am convinced of something, I do it regardless of everything else.

“I’m not afraid of anything, I know that sooner or later I will leave my boys, but today I do not want to imagine that. You must be joking…I’ve only just won the Viareggio.

“Clarence was a teammate, a friend. One minute after the call from Galliani came those from Seedorf and Tassotti.

“We have a wonderful relationship. Clarence is a great, he just needs time.

“Who is my role model on the bench? I do not forget that Mourinho phoned me to give me courage when I was injured, I did not expect that.

“But my first model remains Ancelotti. He was loved by the players.”

Inzaghi reflected on yesterday’s success with his team.

“My joy is to see them happy and especially to see them grow. The greatest satisfaction was not the Cup, but that I found a team of adults. They demonstrated desire and their availability was impressive.

“Messages of congratulations? I received a call from Galliani and also from the President Berlusconi and from Barbara. On the phone I had 150 messages.”

AC Milan win Viareggio
18.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan have today defeated Belgian side Anderlecht to win the Viareggio title and become the most successful team in the competition’s history.

In what was a repeat of last year’s final, goals from Andrea Petagna, Michael Fabbro and Alessandro Mastalli completed a come from behind 3-1 victory for the Rossoneri youth-team at the Stadio dei Pini.

It avenges last year’s final defeat to the same opposition and represents Coach Filipo Inzaghi’s first trophy in his brief career since retiring from playing.

Club Vice-president Adriano Galliani paid tribute to the work put in by the players and coaching staff.

“I’m feeling incredible joy,” he said. “I’m really happy for the boys, for Pippo and for all of Milan.

“It is a team that gives absolutely everything for their Coach.”

It is the ninth time the club have won the tournament outright.

AC Milan helped Flamini 'grow'
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Former Milan midfielder Mathieu Flamini has praised the Rossoneri for helping him develop as a player and as a man.

The Frenchman, now at Arsenal, spent five years at San Siro and believes he is much better off for the experience.

“Having spent five years at Milan I have learned so much,” Flamini told

“Most of all I learned a lot tactically, because it’s true that you learn a lot about this aspect of the game in Italy.

“I matured a lot personally as well.

“I’m 29 years old now and during five years at Milan I met a lot of players and many new people. I have learned so much.

“I feel a lot more mature and now I am much more experienced than when I was only 24.”

AC Milan 'one of world's greatest'
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Former Milan striker Javi Moreno has warned Atletico that they will be facing one of the greatest clubs in the world when they take on Milan.

The first leg of the Champions League tie between the clubs takes place on Wednesday at San Siro and the Spaniard, who played for both teams, insists Atleti will not have it all their own way.

“Atletico need to remember that they are playing against one of the best clubs in the world,” Moreno told Marca.

“Milan are a very competitive team and Atletico need to bear that in mind.

“It will be a very intense game between two great sides.

“Atletico are playing very well and are having a great season. They have a very clear idea of what they want to do and despite recent results that will not change.

“The Champions League gives you a great feeling, given that I have had the chance to play for both teams.

“I hope that the best team wins.”

Atletico announce squad for AC Milan
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Atletico have Atletico Madrid have named their squad for Wednesday’s Champions League Round of 16 clash with Milan.

Coach Diego Simeone’s 19-man party includes David Villa, who has shrugged off injury doubts in time to be fit for the game at San Siro.

Atletico squad: Aranzubia, Courtois, Godin, Alderweireld, Gimenez, Juanfran, Insua, Miranda, Arda, Cristian Rodriguez, Gabi, Mario, Koke, Raul Garcia, Sosa, Diego, Adrian, Villa, Diego Costa.

'Seedorf will do great job'
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan's Ricky Kaka has praised the work done so far by Coach Clarence Seedorf and believes there is much more to come from the Dutchman.

The Brazilian also said that he did not currently feel tempted to follow his former teammate into coaching but always felt he would one day return to San Siro.

“It’s the first time I have worked under a former teammate,” Kaka told a Twitter Q&A session held through Milan's official account.

“I am happy about this and I think Seedorf will do a great job.

“I don’t think I will be a Coach in the future. I don’t know whether in the future I will miss being on the pitch or not. Who knows.

“I always felt that one day I would return here.”

The 31-year-old was then asked about the upcoming Champions League tie with Atletico Madrid and his chances of making Brazil’s World Cup squad.

“We are ready and confident for the game against Atletico.

“I like a lot of their players, some of their players are friends of mine, like David Villa.

“I will do all I can, I know it is up to me. Then we will see if I am on Scolari’s list.”

Finally, the Brazilian also paid tribute to the contribution of his family for his continued success as a player.

“As for who has helped me the most, the response is always the same,” he explained. “My splendid family.

“My wife and family are the people who inspire me most in life.”

'Atletico have renewed enthusiasm'
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Amadeo Carboni has warned Milan that Atletico Madrid have ‘renewed enthusiasm’ heading into this midweek’s Champions League clash.

The Spanish head out to San Siro for the first leg of their Last 16 clash with the Rossoneri joint top of La Liga with Barcelona and Real Madrid.

After a recent blip in form that yielded three consecutive defeats across League and Cup, Diego Simeone’s men are back on track, according to former full-back Carboni.

“Atletico have renewed enthusiasm after the defeats in the Cup to Real Madrid and in the League to Almeria,” the 48-year-old has told Premium Calcio this week.

“David Villa is available after injury, in the winter market arrived Diego Ribas. They are a strong team.

“Atletico exert pressure and their recovery of possession and their set-plays remain very good.”

'Atletico can take result from AC Milan'
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Diego Costa has commented on his belief that Atletico Madrid have the potential to take a positive result away from Milan this midweek.

The Champions League Last 16 begins this week and Wednesday will see the Rossoneri play host to Diego Simeone’s outfit, who currently sit third in La Liga, but level on points with Barcelona and Real Madrid.

For Los Colchoneros’ striker, respect for Il Diavolo is high, but so too is belief inside his team’s dressing room.

“It is a pretty complicated game, but there is the potential for us to play a complete game out there,” Costa has reflected to reporters this week.

“I like big games. Atletico is a big club that should be in this sort of game. I encourage encounters like this.

“It’s a nice game and we will go to San Siro to enjoy it. We know what it represents for Atleti, for us. I believe that we can do something good there.

“A great team like Milan has a long tradition in these games and for us to get something from there we will have to play as complete a game as possible.

“Our form of late? A few days ago it was said that we were at our worst. Those are not things we look at.

“There was no crisis, we knew it would happen sooner or later. People have doubts after three defeats, but we did not have those doubts in the dressing room.

“We practically played two games in a row against a great side like Real Madrid.”

“Mario Balotelli? He’s a great player, among the best in the world. Our defenders are aware of this, they have been warned about him and will do anything to stop him from scoring.

“Are there similarities between him and me? I don’t know, I’ve not thought about it…”

Balotelli: Atletico a great team
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mario Balotelli has acknowledged that Atletico Madrid ‘are a great team’, and that their clash with Milan is not about himself and Diego Costa.

The two strikers are set to meet this Wednesday at San Siro in the first leg of their respective sides’ Champions League Last 16 clash.

“Atletico is doing really well in the Spanish championship. They are a great team,” Balotelli has told Marca’s latest issue.

“The tie is between Milan and Atletico [not between Diego Costa and Mario Balotelli]. Although Diego Costa seems like a very good player.

“[Diego] Simeone was a great player and is a great Coach. It is always an honour for a Coach to rate me. At the moment, I'm with Milan. I can't say much more.

“Seedorf and I talked about the situation in the team and about the things I need to do on the field. I'm happy.

“In this situation, changes are normal. Seedorf is a great champion and it's a pleasure to listen to him. He was also a great player. Hopefully it will all go well.”

Balotelli was also asked about his former side Manchester City’s impending clash with Barcelona.

“I hope City beat Barcelona. My former teammates are there, but it will be very tough. Barcelona is one of the favourites at the moment.”

AC Milan study Ajax's Veltman
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan are reportedly keeping tabs on burgeoning defensive talent Joel Veltman, with a view to a summer move for the Ajax man.

The 22-year-old is seen as having played a significant part in the Dutch club’s form of late, which has them currently top of the Eredivisie with a strong defensive record.

Clarence Seedorf, who is seen to be bringing in Ajax assistant Jaap Stam to his San Siro backroom staff come the summer, reportedly has asked Milan officials to keep tabs on Veltman, who in November received a first call-up to the Dutch national team.

Whilst Veltman has a contract with Ajax through to June 2017, the Corriere dello Sport speculate that Milan’s interest is in a potential bid this summer.

Seedorf: Like I'd never left
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf has reflected that his return to Milan as Coach has felt like he was never away from the Rossoneri.

The Dutchman was appointed to the bench as Max Allegri’s replacement in mid-January, 18 months on from having originally left the club after 10 years as a midfielder.

For the 37-year-old, his early work back at Milanello has carried great familiarity.

“Coming back to Milan was like I'd never been away actually - you know everybody, everybody knows you,” Seedorf has considered in conversation with UEFA’s official website.

“Getting back was just like coming back after I'd been injured or on holiday. After 10 years I think you get a sense of things and of course the President, Berlusconi, has always expressed the values he would like to see on the field and also off it.

“Those are values I definitely want to work on and want to impart to the group, because we have a responsibility, especially to the younger ones watching us.

“It's not only about winning, but about how we win - it's not only about competing, but about how you compete.

“It's a long journey but it has started now and I'm very happy to lead it from a technical point of view.”

Rami: AC Milan are improving
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adil Rami believes that Milan may show this week against Atletico Madrid that they are ‘getting better with time’.

The Rossoneri continue work under new Coach Clarence Seedorf with a return to Champions League action with a Last 16 first leg clash on Wednesday night at home to high-flying Atletico.

It is a game that one of the Italians’ new faces does not see as necessarily arriving too soon.

“We’ll see against Atletico but we’re getting better with time,” Rami has mused recently to Milan Channel.

“We’re getting used to this system and we won so there’s more confidence.

“Atletico are a strong team mentally too, they’re not your typical team that always looks for the ball like Barcelona, they prefer to play on the counter attack.

“We’ll have to do well against them, we’ll have to play at 100 per cent. Diego Costa is fast, always dopes well and always wants to win.

“At the moment we have a lot of possession but we’re not being dangerous enough, with time and confidence we’ll get back to winning with continuity.”

Milan head into midweek with a 1-0 win over Bologna from Week 24.

“Against Bologna, I knew inside myself that we couldn’t end the game 0-0 and when Mario scored, I couldn’t believe it.

“What a goal, he has a really powerful shot but it’s not just power, there’s technique as well, the ball followed a perfect trajectory and not many players can shoot like that.”

Rami also commented on a couple of his teammates.

“It’s easy to play with Kevin Constant as we’ve known each other for years and of course it’s easier to talk to him.

“Adel Taarabt speaks English and French, he’s new here, but he’s getting to know everyone.

“I have to listen to the Coach. He says we’re playing with a system that puts pressure on the adversary and leaves little space for the opposition forwards and I try and do my job as best I can.”

'Atletico are favourite, but AC Milan...'
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Demetrio Albertini admits that Atletico Madrid are favourites this week, but that opponents Milan cannot be written off.

The Rossoneri host Los Colchoneros in the first leg of the Champions League Last 16 on Wednesday evening.

One man to have represented both clubs is Albertini and so he has reflected on the upcoming clash and who may be in the best shape heading into it.

“Atletico have been modernised and the team are fighting with the best. They have won the Europa League and the Supercopa,” began Albertini to AS today.

“Yes Atletico has an advantage, they are favourite, for their place in La Liga, but do not forget one thing.

“The Champions League is Milan’s home. They have seven European Cups, the history is there.

“Atletico are having an impressive season, maintaining the pace with Madrid and Barcelona and playing with a lot of determination.

“They are very dangerous because they have the confidence of a winning team.

“How should Milan face them? I’m not a Coach, it is not my field. That is what you should ask Seedorf.

“Atletico seems like an Argentine or Italian team since Simeone’s arrival. They are tough. Above all they are a balanced team.

“The Coach has conveyed a very definite style and character. Balance is the mark and character of Atletico.

“Seedorf, on the other hand, has not had too much time to fix things, but the team has been reinforced in the winter and has improved.”

Albertini was asked by the Spanish publication why only one Italian side had progressed to the Last 16 this year.

“Napoli had some bad luck and Juventus went wrong in a couple of games, which you pay for in this competition.

“It is clear that we have lost the potential that we had in the 1990s. Italian teams are economically less powerful than a Madrid or a Barcelona. We have lost our place in the European ranking because we have also not been good in the Europa League.

“We had many teams in the 1990s, not only Juventus and Milan, but also Fiorentina, Lazio, Inter, Parma, there was a great level…”

Inzaghi: A step at a time
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Pippo Inzaghi says he is rooting for Clarence Seedorf to come good at Milan and that he is taking his own career ‘a step at a time’.

The retired striker was linked with replacing Max Allegri as Coach a few weeks ago, before the position was handed to Seedorf.

On from taking the club’s primavera outfit to a second successive final in the Viareggio Youth tournament, against Anderlecht for a consecutive year, the young tactician has reflected on what might have been.

“I am happy, we have achieved the chance to play in a final so prestigious for a second year in a row,” Inzaghi began to Sky Sport 24 this week.

“I hope my boys play well, it would be nice to win. We hope to bring home the Cup. What makes me proud is how the players follow me and my staff, it is something extraordinary.

“Do I regret not being first team Coach? No. I am happy where I am. I began in Serie C and arrived to the top of the world.

“I take it a step at a time and am very calm. I am very happy that Seedorf has come, he was one of the first to call me yesterday.

“I wish him all the luck in the world, I will continue my way, rooting for Milan and Clarence. I hope that he does well on Wednesday against Atletico.

“His impact? It has been very good, he should be allowed to work peacefully, the situation he has inherited is not easy.

“He has two-and-a-half-years to return Milan to past glories, we hope he can do it. He is a great friend of mine.”

Inzaghi was also linked with the bench at Sassuolo last month, only for the Rossoneri to reject their advances and the Coach to opt to remain.

“Galliani has never wanted to get rid of me. The offer was important, Milan didn’t want me to go and I did not even think about it, I would be sorry to leave my boys.

“Milan is my home. I want to finish my second adventure and then we shall see. The relationship with Galliani is amazing as always.

“Why did I decide to become a Coach? I wanted to play again, then Milan made me this offer.

“I decided to retire, it was difficult, but I made the right choice, beginning this adventure that is giving me great satisfaction.”

Poli to start against Atletico?
17.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Andrea Poli is reportedly in line to take an attacking position for Milan in their Champions League meeting with Atletico Madrid this week.

The Rossoneri play host to Diego Simeone’s high-flying Spanish on Wednesday evening in the first leg of their Last 16 tie, with a number of absences to contend with in attack.

Alongside Keisuke Honda and Riccardo Saponara’s ineligibility has come injury to Stephan El Shaarawy, Valter Birsa, Robinho and most recently to Ricky Kaka, who picked up an ankle injury against Bologna on Friday night.

Speculation is that Poli, who finished that same game in an advanced position, is in line once more to take a similar role from the first minute against Atletico, with the Brazilian veteran, having since trained to a separate routine and his availability in doubt.

Latest speculation is that Poli will line up in a three alongside Mario Balotelli and Adel Taarabt, behind lone striker Giampaolo Pazzini.

Sitting midfield positions will be for Michael Essien and Nigel de Dong, whilst Adil Rami and Daniele Bonerea look set for centre-back, with Ignazio Abate and Mattia De Sciglio at full-back.

Seedorf: 'AC Milan DNA inside me'
16.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf prepares for his Champions League debut against Atletico Madrid by confessing “the DNA of Milan is inside me.”

The Dutchman is famously the only player to have won this tournament with three different clubs – Ajax, Real Madrid and twice Milan – so hopes to bring some of that unique experience to his first coaching job.

“I’m very proud of this achievement. The Champions League is an incredible tournament where all the best players and best clubs perform,” he told

“Being able to have this record is a great satisfaction.”

On Wednesday night the Rossoneri host Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their Round of 16 tie.

“Coming back to AC Milan was like I’d never been away actually. You know everybody, everybody knows you,” continued the 37-year-old.

“Getting back to Milanello was just like coming back after I’d been injured or on holiday for a while. After 10 years I think you get a sense of things and of course the President, Silvio Berlusconi, has always expressed the values he would like to see on the field and also off it.

“The DNA of Milan is something I have inside of me. Those are values I definitely want to work on and want to impart to the group, because we have a responsibility, especially to the younger ones watching us: it’s not only about winning, but about how we win; it’s not only about competing, but about how you compete.

“I like to see a team that likes to attack, who is creative, which for me means players who do individual stuff, but also a team like Bayern Munich has shown over the last few years that with great organisation and offensive power.

“I’m not really a fan of those teams who are always waiting behind and counter-attacking. Of course that can be very effective, you can win like that and sometimes you have to play like that,

“If you ask me what really excites me, then it’s a team that tries to score more than one goal in a game,” smiled the Dutchman.

Seedorf lifted Milan’s last Champions League trophy in 2007, beating Liverpool in the Final.

“The club wants to use this transition phase to build a bright future again, to build a strong team that will be competitive again worldwide.

“Again, it’s not only winning, but how you compete, how you win and making sure we can be a great example for other players, other clubs and especially all the people who are watching us.

“It’s a long journey, but it has started now and I’m very happy to lead it from a technical point of view.”

There are concerns ahead of the Atletico Madrid tie, as Kaka and Cristian Zapata both picked up injuries during the 1-0 win over Bologna on Friday night.

Keisuke Honda is cup-tied, while Sulley Muntari and Riccardo Montolivo are suspended for the first leg.

Seedorf: 'AC Milan deserve respect'
15.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Coach Clarence Seedorf hit back at criticism of his Milan side. “People try to create controversy.”

The tactician spoke to Sport Mediaset and Sky Sport Italia after last night’s 1-0 win over Bologna and ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid.

“The presence and support of the President was important. He was timely in his intervention, not tied to any results, but rather to plan for the future,” he said of a dinner with Silvio Berlusconi and CEO Adriano Galliani this week.

“We are all united and Berlusconi only confirmed that. I often speak to the President. Unfortunately, there are some who want to divide and create controversy where none exists.

“People talk about things that are not based on facts. How can they start to doubt me when I’ve only just arrived and picked up the team mid-season?

“It’s a shame for Milan, who are one of the most important clubs in Italy and deserve respect, but I’ve seen and heard these things since I was a player. They are false and were written only to hurt people.

“My job now is to protect the group.”

There have been reports Seedorf is pushing to completely revamp the coaching staff at the club.

“You must understand I can’t respond to everything people write in the papers. I am happy with my staff right now and they are helping me. As for next season, we’ll see when the time is right.

“Until you hear what I have to say, everything that is written can be considered false.”

Acerbi: 'Pain is temporary'
15.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Sassuolo defender Francesco Acerbi explained why he’s training during chemotherapy. “Pain is only temporary.”

The former Chievo, Genoa and Milan player celebrated his 26th birthday this week, but is fighting a relapse of the testicular cancer that had already been diagnosed in June.

Despite going through a course of chemotherapy, Acerbi can still be seen jogging at the club’s training ground.

“I stop and think that pain is only temporary,” wrote Acerbi on Twitter today.

“I never stop training because I know that soon I will be back on the field with my team.”

A testicular tumour was discovered during a routine medical over the summer, as blood tests showed some irregularities.

It was removed with surgery, but Acerbi then failed a doping test in December, showing elevated levels of a hormone that is created by tumours.

Whereas doctors had opted only for an operation the first time round, the relapse pushed them to advise a course of chemotherapy.

Balotelli: 'I trained for that goal'
15.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mario Balotelli credits his wonder-strike to “training and the talent God gave me,” while admiring Clarence Seedorf’s honesty.

The Friday evening game against Bologna had been petering out towards a 0-0 draw when SuperMario suddenly unleashed a dipping thunderbolt from 39 metres (43 yards) that flew into the far top corner travelling at 91 km/h (56 mph).

“To score a goal like that you also need training and I do train a lot with this type of shot after the end of the regular session with my teammates,” he told Mediaset Premium.

“Of course, there is also the talent God gave me, but I train too.”

It was at least a confidence booster ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid.

“This victory does give us a bit more belief, but on Wednesday night it will be a very different game. We’ll be ready both psychologically and tactically. I have positive sensations.”

Balotelli also feels it is no coincidence the goals against Cagliari and Bologna arrived after Giampaolo Pazzini came off the bench.

“I get along very well with Pazzini and hope we’ll have the chance to further improve this partnership, seeing as whenever we play together one of us always scores.”

Coach Seedorf suggested this week Balotelli “will become a champion,” but isn’t quite there yet. Mario assures he was not offended.

“Seedorf really fires me up. We have a good rapport because he says things to your face and I like that. Am I a champion? These are things you journalists say. I believe you can tell a champion by what he does on the pitch.”

Galliani: 'Balotelli goal of the year!'
15.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adriano Galliani says Mario Balotelli scored “the goal of the year” and hopes Milan can beat Atletico Madrid.

The Rossoneri had put in a dire performance against Bologna on Friday evening until Balotelli’s extraordinary strike from 39 metres (43 yards) flew into the far top corner, clocked at 91 km/h (56 mph).

“I think this will be considered the goal of the year, as he did it without any run-up and put incredible power behind it,” CEO Galliani told Milan Channel.

“Balo is a great player and I will re-watch the footage of that marvellous goal all night. It was a difficult game and Christian Abbiati did very well, then we decided it with that pearl from Mario.

“Let’s not forget he scored 26 goals in 2013 and has everything to become a great champion. I see the fans are growing to appreciate Adel Taarabt, as they can always expect something from him.”

On Wednesday Milan will host Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their Champions League Round of 16 tie.

“Atletico are losing a few games recently, but they are still top of the table and won their Champions League group, so it will be a difficult test. We hope to progress in the tournament.”

This week Coach Clarence Seedorf had dinner with Galliani and President Silvio Berlusconi to discuss strategy.

“We didn’t want to publicise the dinner, as it seemed normal for us three to get together. The President strongly wanted this Coach and we are all in harmony.”

Seedorf: 'I believe in Balotelli'
15.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf was not surprised by Mario Balotelli’s incredible winner for Milan against Bologna. “I believe in him.”

The striker unleashed an extraordinary strike from 39 metres (43 yards) that dipped into the far top corner in the final minutes to secure a 1-0 Serie A victory. It was clocked at 91 km/h (56 mph).

“It’s the kind of goal Mario knows how to score, as he has these weapons in his armoury,” the Coach told Sky Sport Italia.

“The great thing is that the team continues to believe in the result, as you don’t score goals like that unless you believe.”

This week Seedorf hit the headlines when suggesting Balotelli cannot be considered a champion quite yet.

“People like to take my words out of context. I didn’t say Mario isn’t a champion, but that he will become a champion. I believe in him a great deal and I believe in the man he is becoming.

“I only think positive things towards him. What position do I like him best in? I like Balotelli, full stop. He can play on the right or the left.”

The overall Milan performance was poor and they go into Wednesday’s Champions League Round of 16 first leg tie with Atletico Madrid.

“The team fought hard. It wasn’t a great game, but it’s not easy when your opponents sit and wait for 90 minutes. Atletico do not play the same way as Bologna, who defend very deep.

“Michael Essien has to play against Atletico, so I decided not to risk him tonight. We are working for the future and Milan’s results this season will influence the choices for next term.”

Ricky Kaka limped off in this game after turning his ankle, so are there fears he could miss Atletico Madrid?

“He said he felt ok, but we substituted him straight away as a precaution.”

Ballardini: 'Goal out of nowhere'
15.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Bologna Coach Davide Ballardini can’t believe his side lost to Milan after a stunning Mario Balotelli “goal out of nowhere.”

It had been a very even game at San Siro until SuperMario’s remarkable 40-metre strike in the final minutes.

“It was a very good performance until Balotelli’s goal, as we also created important scoring opportunities and didn’t allow Milan any,” he told Sky Sport Italia.

“Milan have the kinds of players who can decide a match at any moment. I am very angry at the result, but at the same time happy with the attitude of my team. We’ve good solid foundations to build on.”

Alessandro Diamanti has left for Guangzhou Evergrande, but the two Bologna performances since his exit have been very encouraging.

“I expected this response. We are a team and we proved it,” continued Ballardini. “We’re happy for Diamanti’s career, but we have to carry on and have other good players who can replace him.

“Bologna were in control tonight and then we conceded that goal out of nowhere. It’s enormously disappointing, because we did not deserve to lose, and at the same time satisfied at playing so well.”

Ballardini was drafted in last month to help save Bologna, replacing the sacked Coach Stefano Pioli.

“I have been a mid-season replacement in seven of my eight Serie A experiences, so I am an expert in this field. I knew full well what awaited us.”

Balotelli: 'I saw keeper off his line'
15.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mario Balotelli reveals how he scored his Milan-Bologna wonder-strike and had a special dedication.

The hitman secured a 1-0 victory this evening with an astonishing goal, a dipping shot from almost 39 metres (43 yards) that flew into the far top corner at 91 km/h (56 mph).

“I looked at the goalkeeper and saw he was a little off his line, so I hit it with full force and fortunately it went in,” SuperMario told Sky Sport Italia.

“It’s a good goal. The Coach gives me confidence, as I am the one who has to pull the team forward and therefore it’s my duty to score these goals.

“It wasn’t a great game tonight, anything but,” he confessed.

Balotelli was asked about his tears following a substitution against Napoli last week, reportedly because he was unable to dedicate a goal to his daughter Pia, who lives in Naples.

“People look too much into my private life and I’d recommend they avoid that. I am the striker of the Nazionale, so you should let me live my life.

“Do I have a special dedication tonight? I say Happy Valentine’s Day to my girlfriend Fanny, as I love her very much.”

Serie A: AC Milan 1:0 Bologna - Balotteli goal
14.2 || webmaster

Serie A: AC Milan 1:0 Bologna - match report
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Scorer: Balotelli 87 (M)

Mario Balotelli scored a goal of the season contender as Milan beat Bologna 1-0 on Friday evening at San Siro.

The Rossoneri welcomed back Kaka to their starting after the Brazilian recovered from his bout of flu last week. The Brazilian played alongside Keisuke Honda and Adel Taarabt in a 4-2-3-1, as the home side looked to bounce back from defeat at the hands of Napoli last weekend. The Rossoblu meanwhile, were hoping for back-to-back away wins, and named the same XI that beat Torino last time out.

And it was the Diavolo who got off to the brighter start, pushing Davide Ballardini’s men back virtually on to the edge of their own area. Milan were happy keeping possession, and it wasn’t until five minutes in that Riccardo Montolivo got off the first shot – his effort though, was saved easily by Gianluca Curci.

And the goalkeeper was at it again 10 minutes later, when the Italy international struck from outside the area for a second time – forcing the Bologna shot-stopper into another save.

That profligacy almost cost the Rossoneri though midway through the half. A cross from Gyorgy Garics found Rene Krhin inside the area, but his header was parried over the bar by Christian Abbiati.

The hosts continued to monopolise the ball, but couldn’t break down the Renato Dell’Ara outfit’s wall, as they went into the break goalless.

After the interval, Clarence Seedorf’s team were again in the ascendency, pumping balls into the box through free kicks and corners, but the away team were remaining resolute, heading away anything that came in their path.

Once again, it was Ballardini’s side who almost profited from Milan’s wastefulness as Jonathan Cristaldo got on the end of a Rolando Bianchi cross, only to poke the ball wide.

The away team were building up a head of steam now, and once again went close. Bianchi though, hit his first time effort wide of Abbiati’s left-hand post.

The game looked for certain to remain goalless, but with just three minutes to go, Balotelli struck out of the blue from 35 yards, and watched as the ball rifled into the top left-hand corner to give Milan the win.

Milan: Abbiati; De Sciglio, Rami, Zaccardo, Constant; De Jong (Muntari 64), Montolivo; Honda (Pazzini 66), Kakà (Poli 79), Taarabt; Balotelli

Bologna: Curci; Antonsson, Natali, Mantovani; Garics (Moscardelli 89), Lazaros, Perez (Friburg 89), Krhin, Morleo; Bianchi, Cristaldo (Laxalt 84)

Ref: Bergonzi

Serie A: AC Milan vs. Bologna - lineups
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

AC Milan: Abbiati; De Sciglio, Rami, Zapata, Constant; De Jong, Montolivo; Honda, Kakà, Taarabt; Balotelli.

Bologna: Curci; Antonsson, Natali, Mantovani; Garics, Lazaros, Perez, Krhin, Morleo; Bianchi, Cristaldo.

Zenga: Seedorf right on Balotelli
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Former Inter and Italy goalkeeper Walter Zenga has backed-up Clarence Seedorf after the Dutchman’s comments on Mario Balotelli.

This morning, reports in Italy quoted the new Milan Coach saying that striker Balotelli had all the necessary talent, but was not yet a champion, and Zenga, Coach at Al-Jazira in the UAE, agrees:

"It's obvious, Balotelli is never the key man. Maybe he had been only at Euro 2012. I imagine that Seedorf had said that to stimulate him.

“I’m in agreement with Clarence: potentially Balotelli can become a great, but he’s not there yet - he’s not a player that wins you the league."

Balotelli is expected to play tonight as Milan face Bologna at the San Siro.

AC Milan offer Alex two-year deal
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan have offered Paris Saint-Germain defender Alex a two-year contract, it’s been claimed in France.

L’Equipe believe that the Rossoneri have tabled the deal for the Brazilian, whose current contract with the French club ends in the summer.

The paper believes that the centre-back would ideally like to stay with the Ligue 1 outfit, but if that does not materialise, would move to Clarence Seedorf’s side.

Alex will wait until the summer to decide on his future though, hoping that PSG come up with an 11th hour offer.

Maldini backs Allegri for Italy
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Cesare Maldini believes that Massimiliano Allegri could be the man to over the Italian national team after the World Cup.

Cesare Prandelli’s future with the Azzurri has been in some doubt, with reports suggesting that the former Fiorentina Coach could step down from the position post-Brazil.

The man himself has refused to comment on the issue as yet, but ex-Italy boss Maldini, who took charge of the national team at World Cup 1998, believes that the one-time Milan tactician is the right man for the job.

“Allegri could be the man? Why not,” he told Calcio News. “Max was in charge at Milan for three-and-a-half seasons, won a championship and has been able to take charge during a tough period.

“I know the modus operandi of the Federation, and I know they choose from a wide range of candidates.

“If Prandelli were to leave, I think Allegri would be the right man, without a doubt.”

Sogliano: AC Milan? No comment
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Verona sporting director Sean Sogliano has refused to comment on links he will move to Milan.

The Gialloblu board member was rumoured to be on his way to San Siro last year, before Adriano Galliani reversed his decision to leave.

However, the Bentegodi outfit’s staff member has claimed that he won’t talk about the rumours, but would remark on Verona’s objectives for the season.

“Milan? I won’t talk about that,” he told Tuttosport. “I won’t make a comment until the season is over.

“For Verona, the objective is always staying up. We’ve achieved good results, but we have to stay humble.

“We just have to try and get as many points as possible and see what happens at the end of the season.

“But if we show the same desire we showed last Sunday against Juventus, then I think we’ll be okay.”

AC Milan abandon EXPO plans
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan have abandoned plans to move from San Siro to the site of the EXPO in the city, it has been revealed.

The Rossoneri are looking to move out of their current home, and had initially ear-marked the site in the north-west, Rho-Pero area.

However, Gazzetta dello Sport claim that the move would cost upwards of €300m – too expensive for Silvio Berlusconi.

The pink paper now believes that Milan will look at a site in the Sesto San Giovanni area.

Capello: Serie A isn't competitive
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Fabio Capello has hit out at the quality of Italian football, insisting that Juventus are suffering in the Champions League as a result.

The Bianconeri, despite winning the last two domestic titles, crashed out of Europe’s top club competition at the group stage this season.

And the former Bianconeri boss has claimed that the lack of competition is showing against teams on the continent.

“Juventus are good in Italy and bad out of it,” he told Gazzetta dello Sport. “There is no competition for them in Serie A, and therefore, no proper workouts.

“Just look at the squads – last summer Roma, Fiorentina and Napoli all sold their best players abroad. Jovetic, Cavani and Lamela all left, whilst Juventus have just added quality.

“Juve were a flop in the Champions League, but the fact that the final of the Europa League is in Turin should act as a stimulus for them in that competition.”

The current Russia Coach then commented on Milan’s Champions League tie with Atletico Madrid, and Walter Mazzarri’s Inter.

“Atleti are the favourites against Milan. I saw them against Barcelona and they are a great team.

“They can score from various ways – Costa, Villa and dead-ball situations. There are no complicated calculations for this game – Milan just have to be better in the two legs.

“I can’t judge Seedorf yet. He’s only just started, but he’s joined at a crucial time of the season.

“The change of ownership at Inter has cost them on the pitch, I think. That sort of thing will have complicated repercussions.

“Hernanes is a good player on which to rebuild though.”

Ballardini: 'AC Milan not in crisis'
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Davide Ballardini does not believe Milan “are in crisis,” but trusts Bologna can get a result at San Siro tomorrow.

The Serie A fixture kicks off at 19.45 GMT on Friday.

“If we think Milan are in crisis, then we are starting off on the wrong foot,” warned the Rossoblu Coach.

“The Rossoneri have players who are so talented that they can change the game at any moment. We must remain concentrated with the awareness of our own qualities that we already proved against Torino.”

Bologna are fresh from a shock 2-1 victory away to high-flying Toro, while Milan were beaten 3-1 at Napoli.

“We mustn’t just be passive. We cannot go to San Siro just to clam up. Instead, with solidity, hard work and courage to play our game we can try to force them into a different performance and create problems for Milan.”

Rolando Bianchi is not 100 per cent fit, but is in the squad, while Michele Pazienza and Robert Acquafresca are sidelined.

Bologna squad for Milan: Curci, Malagoli, Stojanovic; Antonsson, Cech, Cherubin, Crespo, Garics, Mantovani, Morleo, Natali, Sorensen; Friberg, Ibson, Kone, Krhin, Laxalt, Perez; Bianchi, Christodoulopoulos, Cristaldo, Paponi, Moscardelli.

AC Milan injury list grows for Bologna
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Urby Emanuelson, Robinho and Daniele Bonera have joined the Milan injury list against Bologna.

The Serie A fixture kicks off on Friday at 19.45 GMT.

Clarence Seedorf welcomes Cristian Zapata back to the squad, but Emanuelson, Robinho and Bonera are on the treatment table.

They miss out along with longer-term absentees Stephan El Shaarawy, Bryan Cristante, Valter Birsa and Matias Silvestre.

This game is brought forward to Friday in order to help Milan prepare for next week’s Champions League Round of 16 tie with Atletico Madrid.

Milan squad for Bologna: Abbiati, Amelia, Gabriel, Abate, Constant, De Sciglio, Mexes, Rami, Zaccardo, Zapata, Essien, De Jong, Honda, Kakà, Montolivo, Muntari, Poli, Saponara, Taarabt, Balotelli, Pazzini.

Seedorf: 'Balotelli not yet a champion'
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan Coach Clarence Seedorf has insisted that Mario Balotelli is still yet to reach the level required to be considered a true champion.

The 23-year-old has already won trophies with Inter and Manchester City in his relatively short career but his Dutch tactician insisted there is still much more to come from the player.

“Mario is a great talent and we hope he can explode and become the champion that he still isn’t yet,” Seedorf told today’s Press conference ahead of his side’s game against Bologna.

“I am convinced that sooner or later he will do it because he has great desire.

“His tears at Napoli were a release of emotion, he is a human being.”

The San Siro boss also commented on the progress made by his side so far during his short tenure.

“I am optimistic for the future, but it will take time to get things right because we have a lot of hard work to do.

“I know what it is we have to do, we are our own biggest critics.

“The team needs to improve all over but it doesn’t interest me to criticise the previous Coach.

“We need to work both on physical and mental aspects of our game and we need to do it together, with intelligence and speed.

“We want to win and we want to do it convincingly, playing an intense brand of football.

“The players haven’t been demotivated by the loss at Napoli, who against Roma showed they are a great side.

“I have seen a great desire within the players to improve.

“Bologna are a team who deserve a lot of respect and who won away to Torino. We need to pay attention to their strengths, they are a very organised team.”

The 37-year-old then commented on a number of his players.

“Kaka is not here just to go to the World Cup. He is here to help Milan to develop and in turn Milan will help him get to the World Cup.

“For me he has a great chance to go to Brazil, he is doing very well for us.

“Honda needs patience, lots of talented players who have arrived in Italy have needed time to settle. I’m not worried about him and he should be ready for tomorrow.

“I don’t think De Sciglio will be back but it depends how he is.

“We only have two central strikers available, so if we want to change it during the game how do I do it? I’ve thought about playing Pazzini and Balotelli together and it’s a possibility.”

Seedorf has recently held a dinner meeting with club President Silvio Berlusconi.

“It was an evening during which we obviously discussed the future of Milan,” he explained.

“There is a great desire to take Milan back up to where they should be, although we all know it will take time.”

Seedorf met with Berlusconi
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Silvio Berlusconi met with Milan Coach Clarence Seedorf earlier this week, to ‘convey his confidence’ in the Dutchman.

Tuttosport are today running the line that the 37-year-old had dinner with the Rossonero President on Tuesday evening, whilst say that Vice-President Adriano Galliani was also present at the meeting held at Berlusconi’s villa in Arcore.

On from denied rumours of Berlusconi’s discontent with Seedorf’s tactical decisions, it is alleged that this meeting was used by the President to convey his support in the Coach’s work ahead of facing Atletico Madrid.

Milan go into the Champions League Last 16 clash with the Spanish with only four players to fill the front four positions in Seedorf’s 4-2-3-1, with Robinho joining Stephan El Shaarawy and Valter Birsa on the sidelines, and Keisuke Honda and Riccardo Saponara ineligible.

Even so, the suggested solution of Mario Balotelli playing behind striker Giampaolo Pazzini is seen to be one favoured by Berlusconi, and speculated as possibly a point of discussion also this week.

Simeone: Atletico expect tough AC Milan
14.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Diego Simeone says Atletico Madrid may be fatigued, as he ponders the dangers Milan represent in the Champions League.

Next midweek will see the former Inter and Lazio midfielder return to San Siro as Coach with Los Colchoneros for the first leg of the Champions League Last 16, to face the Rossoneri.

“Yes it is something I like very much,” Simeone has considered in conversation with the Gazzetta dello Sport.

“It is going to be a beautiful occasion for what I experienced at Inter. Playing at San Siro is always wonderful, even if ‘playing’ is not the right word because now I am a Coach.

“Though, the feelings will be those, it is nice to go back to Milan.”

Atleti head into the tie with form on the downturn, thanks to three consecutive defeats across League and Cup.

“Is it usual? No, but it happens. Two were in the Copa del Rey against one of the strongest teams in the world.

“Am I concerned? No. Eight days ago we were first in La Liga. All teams sooner or later go through a difficult moment, let’s see how we come out of it.

“If one looks at the 38 weeks of La Liga, it is impossible to think that we can compete with Madrid and Barcelona, impossible. They have a quality that makes a difference in the long run.

“Are we fatigued? Could be. Yet, if we talk of this then continuity was also one of the key factors to finding ourselves in this position.

“Nobody can guarantee that if we had played others then we would be in this position.

“Which is the priority? For me, the life for the fans is La Liga. The Champions League is stupendous, it makes you dream, but La Liga is the daily bread.”

The 43-year-old, who has also coached briefly in Italy with Catania, was asked what sort of Milan he expects to face.

“Milan in the Champions League are much stronger than they are in Serie A. It is a question of the mind, the habit of playing for a big club that always wants to do well in Europe.

“And then, the League and Cup are gone, and so focus remains on the Champions League and there is great respect. It is going to be tough.

“Milan have many champions and should be approached with great humility, knowing that we will not be facing the team in Serie A, but a more aggressive one, with a great desire to do well.

“When we face Milan they will bring out the best in themselves, certainly.”

The Argentine was asked whether he was surprised to see Clarence Seedorf handed the reins at Milan without previous experience.

“All of us one day when we started [had no experience], I do not see anything strange. Early on people talk, wonder, doubt.

“Then, if one wins, then everyone congratulates them and then they say, ‘clearly this one has played, they know’. Let’s say that whatever happens, you journalists will come out alive, us Coaches, less so.

“Seedorf has joined Milan at a particular moment? Yes, but he is very familiar with the club, he had only left ‘home’ recently. Several players were his teammates, which is a bonus for a Coach.”

The tactician was also asked for his opinion of Mario Balotelli.

“Balotelli? A phenomenon. He is someone who can make the leap in quality for his team, a player I like very much, for whom I have great admiration. He is one that can resurrect a dead game.”

More Atletico injuries against AC Milan
12.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Atletico Madrid will be without Javi Manquillo for both Champions League legs against Milan.

The 19-year-old fell on to his neck during the 2-0 Copa del Rey semi-final defeat to Real Madrid last night.

Tests have now shown the defender suffered fractured vertebral lamina and will have to wear a collar for four to six weeks.

Atleti are already without the injured midfielder Tiago for this Round of 16 tie.

The first leg is at San Siro next Wednesday with the return in Madrid on March 11.

Galliani: 'El Shaarawy torment ending'
12.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adriano Galliani hopes Stephan El Shaarawy’s “torment is coming to an end” and noted Milan need their Little Pharaoh back.

The striker had a check-up today in Amsterdam and was given the all-clear to remove the cast on his foot after surgery in December.

“El Shaarawy is a very important player and could be even more crucial with this current system Clarence Seedorf is using,” CEO Galliani told Sky Sport Italia.

“He has now stopped using crutches, which is already a good sign. There are another six weeks to go and we hope his torment is coming to an end.”

Galliani also commented on the upcoming Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid at San Siro.

“As always, the theme music is magical.”

Donadoni considering Parma exit
12.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Roberto Donadoni may be considering his future at Parma after being disillusioned by fans’ reaction.

The Crociati supporters were heard booing the team after their 0-0 draw with Catania on Sunday, despite not having lost a game since the start of November.

The Ennio Tardini outfit are currently in eighth place, but as was reported earlier, the Coach has been left baffled by fans unhappiness.

It was suggested in other outlets that Donadoni was happy at Parma, but claim that the 50-year-old may look to leave the club at the end of the season.

The website reveals that Tottenham could well move for the ex-Italy man in the summer, whilst Milan could also be an option if Clarence Seedorf finds the job too daunting.

El Shaarawy given initial all-clear
12.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Stephan El Shaarawy can begin his rehabilitation after getting the initial all-clear from doctors in the Netherlands.

The Milan forward travelled to Amsterdam this afternoon to speak to Professor Niek van Dijk, and after a consultation has cleared the striker to start his recovery.

The Italy international has been plagued by injuries this term, going under the knife in December for a foot injury.

But Gazzetta dello Sport have confirmed that El Shaarawy is allowed to remove his protective boot and can begin a four-week programme to regain strength and muscle.

In a month’s time he will then travel back to Holland to see if he can start training properly.

Arsenal to offer EUR 30 mil. for Balotelli
12.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Arsenal are ready to bid €30m for Milan striker Mario Balotelli, it has been claimed in the Italian Press.

Reports in England surfaced earlier this month that revealed Puma – the Gunners’ new kit manufacturer – were ready to stump up some cash in order to see one of their clients move to a Puma team.

And Sport Mediaset write this afternoon that Arsene Wenger has already met with the forward’s agent, Mino Raiola, to start initial discussions.

The website believes that the north London side are ready to part with €30m for the Italy international, some of which may come from the German sports brand.

It’s suggested that Balotelli is disillusioned with life at San Siro, and would welcome a move back to the Premier League.

Balotelli on racism, Ibra & the Pope
12.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mario Balotelli has admitted that he would leave the pitch were he to be the subject of racist chanting.

The Milan striker was seen crying on the bench after being taken off in Milan’s 3-1 loss to Napoli at the weekend.

Initial reports suggested that it was because the striker had been abused racially by fans at Stadio San Paolo, but that was subsequently denied by all parties.

The Italy international though, has conceded that he would have no qualms about leaving the pitch prematurely were he being abused.

“Would I leave the pitch? Yes, I would,” he told 4-4-2. “I accept the professional criticism, but the only thing that bothers me is the racism.

“If a crowd isn’t racist then there would be no problems. I grew up with certain things, but when I do something important on the pitch, and I see people are proud of me, that’s when I love being a footballer.”

Balotelli then commented on meeting the Pope and his idols growing up.

“I believe in God and at certain times that helps me calm down. It meant a lot for me to meet the Pope.

“I learned a lot from him. He’s a man who is deeply inspiring. It is an experience I will never forget.

“When I was a kid my idol was Ronaldo. He was a fantastic player who made me fall in love with the game. But Ibrahimovic is also an incredible player.”

El Shaarawy wants AC Milan stay
12.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Stephan El Shaarawy has revealed his desire to stay at Milan, despite a substantial offer from a Russian team.

The young forward has played just four League matches this season after suffering heavily with injury.

But the striker has insisted that he wants to recover from the knock and establish himself with the Rossoneri for years to come.

“I’ve been dogged by bad luck,” he told Corriere dello Sport. “In September I had a muscular problem, and since then I have had a succession of niggles.

“And it culminated in December with the operation on my foot. It’s important for me to get back to MIlanello as soon as possible and try to heal.

“It’s been a difficult few months, what with the injury and the coaching change.

“I owe Allegri a lot – he immediately gave me confidence when I came into the team.

“But I’ve had Seedorf as a teammate and he helped me in the locker room in the past. I know he can do a great job.

“I’ve never felt excluded from this project, even when I was at my lowest with injury.

“There has been an offer from a Russian team, but I decided to stay at Milan because that’s what I want.

“It’s my intention to become a champion here.”

El Shaarawy injury check-up
12.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan striker Stephan El Shaarawy will get a new verdict on his injury in Amsterdam tomorrow.

According to Sky Sport Italia, the forward will have a check-up with Professor Niek Van Dijk, who performed the surgery on his foot on December 28.

The 21-year-old suffered a micro-fracture in his foot in September and it did not heal when expected, so he went under the knife in December.

He is still wearing a cast on his foot, but the all-clear in tomorrow’s check-up could see him make his way back to training.

Even if El Shaarawy sticks to the schedule of recovery, he’s still not expected back on the pitch until April.

Taarabt: 'I want AC Milan stay'
12.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adel Taarabt loved scoring on his Milan debut on loan from QPR. “I have four months to prove I can play here.”

The forward found the net just seven minutes into his Serie A bow, though the Rossoneri went on to lose that game 3-1 against Napoli.

“It is a dream to be at Milan and scoring on my debut is fantastic. I hope it is just the beginning of a great adventure,” he told Milan Channel.

“It was my most important goal, because I scored it with the Rossoneri jersey.”

The curling finish was said by some to resemble a finish Zinedine Zidane used to do.

“Zidane has always been my idol, so I’m happy one of my goals is compared to his. I’ve settled in quickly and Clarence Seedorf told me from the start I would have three training sessions and then play against Napoli.

“I have another four months to prove I can play here, because I want to stay at Milan. My role? I prefer to play behind the striker.”

The defeat to Napoli was overshadowed by the sight of Mario Balotelli crying on the bench and Taarabt explained why.

“He is going through a difficult time and wanted to score in Naples for his daughter. We need to stay close to him, as he is a great player who needs love and we need Mario.

“We’ve already bonded and he is helping me a great deal. We took a walk together in Naples and we had to sneak out the back to avoid being seen, as Mario’s popularity in Italy is incredible.”

It is remarkable that Taarabt interrupted his six-month loan spell at Fulham because he couldn’t get playing time, yet has already scored in Serie A.

“I don’t know why I didn’t play at Fulham, but now I am at Milan where there are many important players.

“My debut went even better than I expected, but I know that I can do much more. My objective is to remain here and get Milan to take up their option on me.

“It was a special feeling to make my debut against Napoli, as I am a great admirer of Diego Maradona, so thinking that I was playing in his home stadium was exciting.

“Playing at San Siro on Friday against Bologna will also be exceptional and against Atletico Madrid even more so.

“I’ve never played in the Champions League, so it will be a truly unforgettable moment.”

One of the reasons Taarabt was signed by Milan in January is that he’s not cup-tied, unlike fellow mid-season arrival Keisuke Honda.

Baresi: 'AC Milan deserve current position'
11.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Former Milan captain Franco Baresi admits the Rossoneri deserve their current mid-table Serie A position.

The ex-central defender also expressed his hope that new Coach Clarence Seedorf can turn things around at San Siro and that the team can become more competitive in the near future.

“We know that this year is a one off,” Baresi told reporters today at a promotional event for the club.

“There are lots of factors that have to be taken into account and the team has not been able to express itself well.

“This Milan team deserves to be where it is and the club had to react by changing Coach.

“Seedorf has ideas so we need to wait until he can put them into practice out on the field.

“The team now needs to be prepared for the Champions League where nothing is a given, and they must also finish the season in better shape.

“In the future the club will take action to make the team more competitive.”

Roberto Carlos: 'Seedorf will do well'
11.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

It is only a matter of time before Clarence Seedorf proves his worth as a Coach, according to former Inter star Roberto Carlos.

The Brazilian, who himself is currently on the bench at Turkish outfit Sivasspor, believes that the new Milan boss has what it takes to be successful.

“Seedorf will become a good Coach,” Carlos has told the Gazzetta dello Sport.

“He has always been a leader on the pitch, he’s always wanted to teach everyone everything.

“Kaka told me Clarence understands the players well but I knew that anyway, we lived in the same house for a year-and-a-half!”

The World Cup winner also revealed the lighter side to Seedorf’s character.

“Every time he was in the bathroom it would be for three hours doing his hair with a horrible gel! It was unbearable!

“He used to call some of the neighbours at random and if they answered, he said he had pizza to deliver.

“We all have a childish side.”

Carlos also commented about his brief spell at Milan’s San Siro rivals Inter.

“Roy Hodgson wanted me to play as a midfielder and I wanted to be a full-back.

“But it’s not his fault that I only stayed for one year.”

Essien: We have to be united
10.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Michael Essien has urged Milan to ‘stay united’ if they are to achieve their goals this season.

The Ghana international played his first match for the Rossoneri last weekend as the San Siro outfit lost 3-1 to Napoli, but the midfielder has insisted that the whole club have to stay together if they are to climb the table.

"I'm very happy to have played 90 minutes against Napoli,” he told Milan Channel.

“I hadn't played a full match for a long time, but unfortunately the result wasn't positive. We have to keep on playing together and then things will only get better.

“I think that I improved throughout the course of the game. I kept on feeling better as the match progressed and that was important for me.

“The more I play the better it will be. I tried to score but unfortunately it didn't go in.

“This is a very difficult season for Milan, but we have to stay united. We all have to give a little bit extre and help each other out. We are Milan and we have to do better."

Essien then commented on his relationship with some of his teammates.

“I know Muntari and De Jong very well, and I'm happy to be in the same team with team. I got to know De Jong when we were both playing in England.

“I also know Kakà well because we played together at Real Madrid. I'm very happy to see them all again. It's nice to have them here, and I'm happy to have joined the Milan family. It's great to be in a squad with these kind of players.”

The former Chelsea man concluded by remarking on the Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid.

"We have to be at our best against Atlético Madrid. I don't know who will play, but those who get to play will have to give their best. The coach will decide who gets to play. Atlético Madrid is a very good team, and I have played against them a few times for Real Madrid.

“They are playing very well at the moment. We have to deliver a top performance in order to beat team. We have to work hard and hope that we can win."

Honda and Kaka back in training
10.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan reconvened for training this afternoon, with Keisuke Honda and Kaka amongst their ranks.

The pair were both laid low for Saturday’s loss against Napoli, but the club confirmed that the duo were back in action during today’s session.

Cristian Zapata and Ignazio Abate were also in with the group for full training, before returning to the gym.

Milan play Bologna on Friday evening.

Robinho could miss Atletico
10.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Robinho faces a battle to be fit in time for Milan’s Champions League last 16 first leg clash with Atletico Madrid next week.

The Brazilian picked up a muscular injury during his side’s 3-1 defeat at Napoli on Saturday and will definitely miss this weekend’s game with Bologna, the Rossoneri have today announced.

“AC Milan can reveal that, during the Napoli-Milan match, Robinho reported a muscular problem in his left thigh,” a statement on their website reads.

“The player will undergo further examination in a week.”

AC Milan to leave San Siro
10.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Inter and Milan have reportedly already decided that they will end cohabitation at San Siro, with the Rossoneri to move out by 2017.

Whilst the Nerazzurri have in previous years been working on a plan to move away from the Giuseppe Meazza stadium to build their own ground, recent reports have suggested it has been Milan pushing forward with such plans under Barbara Berlusconi’s guidance.

Speculation today is that the Diavolo have been working over the past six months on plans for a new stadium to be constructed six kilometres to the north-west, where the Fiera Milan exhibition is currently based and where Expo 2015 will be held.

Arexpo, formed by city authorities to buy up the area of land and oversee its development from 2015, confirmed in November Milan’s initial interest.

They have set a deadline of March 13 - latest March 14 - for proposals to be put forward for construction of a stadium on the land, planned as part of a wider multi-sports and functions development.

SportMediaset and Il Giorno say that Milan are going to come forward, with an aim to begin construction at the end of Expo 2015, in the autumn of that year, and have work completed in time for the 2016-17 season, although it may be more likely that the team cannot move in until the following year.

The Rossoneri and Inter are also seen as in agreement to end their sharing plan at San Siro, with Milan expected to confirm their plans over the course of the next month in time for Arexpo's deadline.

Inter, in turn, are speculated as favouring staying at the stadium and carrying out renovation work.

The two Milanese giants have shared the Giuseppe Meazza since the 1947-48 campaign. The ground will host the 2016 Champions League Final.

Galliani: 'Silvio hasn't criticised Seedorf'
10.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adriano Galliani has denied reports that Silvio Berlusconi has been critical of Clarence Seedorf’s tactics at Milan.

On from a 3-1 defeat to Napoli on Saturday evening, rumours were that the President complained about some of the Dutch tactician’s decisions, in his post-match discussion with Vice-President Galliani.

However, on from reports today suggesting such speculation is untrue, Galliani has himself briefly commented.

“There has been no criticism from Berlusconi of the work of Seedorf,” Galliani is quoted as telling Sky Sport Italia today.

'TV replays would end Calcio'
10.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

President of the Italian Football Referees’ Association Marcello Nicchi is very much against introducing television replays into Italian football.

On from successive weekends that have seen contentious decisions in Serie A, discussion has once more arisen of the possibility of television replays being introduced to aid referees in difficult calls.

However, the head of the Referees’ Association sees the suggestion as more of a hindrance.

“On replays, I have a very clear idea - if tomorrow they were to come in, then we can begin to say that this sport is over,” Nicchi has commented on Radio Rai today.

“The task to enforce the rules is ours, but on the introduction of technology on to the field, more than a few questions arise.

“If we want to change football, give it another name. If you stop the game, how do you restart it? And then, in any case, TV images do not always resolve issues, or clarify misunderstandings.

“Who is responsible for the final decision on the incident? The referee? Or whoever works the device?

“Under what circumstances will replays intervene? When you stop the game? When the referee deems it necessary or when the ball goes out? And what if there is a fast counter-attack and a goal? We nullify everything and go back?

“Football is not owned by anyone, and if you want to change it, let’s change the name, tell the fans that they are going to see an electronic game and that they can follow it safely from home.”

Nicchi was also asked about the disappearing paint referees will have during the World Cup this summer to mark out the position of a wall from a free-kick.

“It is useless. I believe it is nonsense. It is part of a show, let them do it.”

Nicchi also had his say on the current representation of foreigners in Serie A.

“Today I do not enjoy football and it is not what I am most passionate about. There are too many foreigners in the field, they do not understand the culture, nor the history - there are players you have never heard about and we find them in Serie A.

“We have to transmit to them the culture and respect for the rules that perhaps in their countries are applied more lightly.”

Zaccheroni: Honda's best position
10.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Alberto Zaccheroni has enthused at Yuto Nagatomo and Keisuke Honda’s work in Serie A, and offered his view on the latter’s best position at Milan.

The two Japanese internationals are on either side of the Milan divide this season, with Honda’s move to Milan in January seeing him join compatriot and Inter full-back Nagatomo in Serie A.

“It is gratifying for the work we have done with Japan,” their national team Coach Zaccheroni has considered with SportMediaset this week.

“Nagatomo has been doing very well for some time, while Honda can be successful in Milan because he has the right physical and technical qualities.

“Keisuke plays more on the right, but he lacks a little speed, but recovers thanks to his technique and his shooting, so I believe that the best of him comes from playing behind the strikers.

“Milan, however, have many players in that area of the field and Seedorf will have to make choices combining as best he can the characteristics of everyone.

“However, I believe that both can remain for a long time in Milan.”

Almost four years with Japan, the 60-year-old was asked of Cesare Prandelli’s expected exit from Italy after the World Cup and if he would consider the position.

“That is a theme that does not bother me. I have been in Japan for four years and I am very happy.”

Zaccheroni’s career has taken in spells with both Milanese giants and he was asked to reflect on their respective struggles this term.

“Usually it is just the one of the two that does not go well and it is strange to see them both in trouble.

“Milan are changing so much at an executive level, whilst Inter have changed their President. They are two construction sites.

“It is easy for me to say that they have to give continuity to their Coaches to develop the squad and grow the players.

“I believe that Thohir is right to back Mazzarri and to give him time.”

Napoli: 'No Balotelli racism'
9.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Napoli have released a statement to counter untrue reports Mario Balotelli was subjected to racist abuse.

The story spread through Twitter and Facebook after Balotelli was seen crying on the Milan bench following his substitution in last night’s 3-1 defeat.

Although no Italian-language news sources reported the claim, it was widely shared by English-language sites.

“With regards to some debates that appeared on Facebook according to which Mario Balotelli cried at the stadium last night because of alleged racist chants towards him, Napoli underline that, as everyone present at the stadium could tell, there were no racist chants against him, just as there have never been racist chants at the San Paolo against anyone.”

Balotelli’s tears appear to have been a mixture of frustration at missing a great scoring opportunity just before his substitution and the build-up of an emotional week.

DNA tests proved he is the father of Pia, a little girl who lives in Naples with her mother, so it’s possible he was preparing a special dedication for her.

Racism not behind Balotelli tears
9.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf seemed to dismiss rumours Mario Balotelli’s tears were down to racist abuse. “It was actually beautiful.”

The striker broke down on the bench after his substitution during Milan’s 3-1 defeat to Napoli. He had just missed a great scoring opportunity at the Stadio San Paolo.

There have been some reports outside Italy that he was crying because of racist abuse from the Napoli fans, but there appears to be no evidence of this.

“What can I say about Balotelli’s tears? They were the tears of a sportsman,” said Coach Seedorf in a Press conference.

In an interview with Mediaset Premium Seedorf also noted “Mario is human. These are things that happen many times in football and sport in general. I’d say it was actually beautiful, but I’d prefer to talk about the game.”

The tactician had also told Sky Sport Italia “we are players and there are times when we express ourselves that way. I see nothing wrong or abnormal in that. I experienced it at times too.”

Teammate Ignazio Abate suggested the tears were not of anger, but of disappointment. “Mario really cares about doing well with Milan and making his mark. He is sentimental. It’s a shame that he got so downhearted about it, as he needs to keep his head up.”

It has been an emotional few days for Balotelli, as DNA tests proved he is a father to Pia, the daughter of his ex-girlfriend Raffaella Fico.

It’s worth noting his former partner is from Naples and lives in the city, so it’s possible he saw his daughter for the first time this weekend.

Balotelli also wrote an open letter to explain his emotions at this discovery, which terminates a lengthy and often bitter legal battle.

Mario’s brother Enock Baruwah also implied the paternity issue was behind his tears in a tweet.

“Let’s not start posting pictures of him crying, dammit. Let’s leave him alone for once and pretend it didn’t happen... It has been a tough week.”

Seedorf stands up for Balotelli
9.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf insisted Mario Balotelli’s tears were not “abnormal” and defended Milan’s performance against Napoli.

Balotelli burst into tears on the bench after his substitution as the Rossoneri fumbled a lead to lose 3-1 at the San Paolo.

“We are players and there are times when we express ourselves that way. I see nothing wrong or abnormal in that. I experienced it at times too,” the Coach told Sky Sport Italia.

“He too needs to grow in general. He played very well against Cagliari, while tonight perhaps didn’t make the most of the space. These are things we can all improve on and I’m happy he has so many areas to improve, as I can help him through that education.”

Adel Taarabt scored on his Serie A debut, but Gokhan Inler and a Gonzalo Higuain brace turned it all around.

“Taarabt had a great debut. He showed a lot of quality, worked hard and scored a great goal. He presented himself well, didn’t he?”

Seedorf explained some of his unusual choices, such as benching Riccardo Montolivo and pushing Ignazio Abate into the attacking trio behind Balotelli.

“It was a step backwards in terms of the result, but I also saw many positive things. Unfortunately we had prepared it a certain way, then Kaka and Keisuke Honda got ill, so I had to make changes.

“We didn’t have all the players to use this system. I saw Ignazio was struggling a little in the first half, so I moved Urby Emanuelson there as I’ve seen him play there a few times under Allegri.

“I wanted to make two substitutions after the break, but had to preserve one, so I opted to move the players around instead.

“We’ve got the Champions League coming up and Kaka would’ve played if he hadn’t been ill for three days with a fever. As well as to get as many points as possible, my job is to help improve the players who I found in not great physical condition. That takes time.”

Another surprise was Philippe Mexes wearing the captain’s armband rather than Cristian Abbiati.

“We have many centre-backs and he had been out for a while, so I thought it would add further motivation and responsibility to make him feel a part of this group.

“Montolivo is in good shape and he was calm, as I said we cannot just think about the next game. We have to plan, we’ve got a Champions League tie coming up without Montolivo or Sulley Muntari, so I cannot get there without testing the alternatives. Michael Essien hasn’t played much recently and therefore needs time on the field to gain match-fitness.

“I saw this game in a different way. We stayed united and didn’t split in two, I told Adel to keep tracking back even to the edge of his own box and my job now is to see these positive aspects.”

Serie A: Napoli 3:1 AC Milan - match report
8.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Scorers: Taarabt 7 (M), Inler 11 (N), Higuain 56, 82 (N)

Adel Taarabt scored on his Milan debut, but a Gonzalo Higuain brace saw Napoli win 3-1 and Mario Balotelli burst into tears.

The Partenopei badly needed a boost after back-to-back defeats in Serie A and the Coppa Italia, but missed Anthony Reveillere, Juan Camilo Zuniga and Giandomenico Mesto. Milan were still unbeaten in the League with Clarence Seedorf as Coach, but he made huge changes for this trip. Kaka and Keisuke Honda had gastroenteritis, Daniele Bonera suspended, Stephan El Shaarawy, Cristian Zapata, Valter Birsa and Bryan Cristante injured. New buys Michael Essien and Adel Taarabt made their Serie A debuts with Ignazio Abate moved to the right side of an attacking trident. Balotelli returned from his ban.

Milan had managed only three draws from their last five encounters with Napoli, but hadn’t lost both Serie A games in a single season since 1985-86. Gonzalo Higuain tested Cristian Abbiati after just 40 seconds. Adil Rami then ran a risk with a slight shirt tug on Higuain in the box.

It was all Napoli in the early stages, but Milan took a surprise lead with Taarabt on his Serie A debut. He surged through the middle on the counter-attack and curled a wonderful right-foot finish into the far bottom corner of the net.

The hosts fought back and Abbiati smothered Marek Hamsik’s shot, then captain Philippe Mexes needed a decisive sliding intervention to stop Higuain going clear on goal.

It was a frantic start to the game and Napoli equalised when Gokhan Inler’s long-range strike took a deflection off Nigel De Jong to loop over Abbiati. The Swiss midfielder celebrated by showing the Number 7 jersey worn by Carmelo Imbriani, the ex-Napoli player who died a year ago.

Higuain’s swerving shot whistled just past the far stick with Abbiati immobile, then Pepe Reina had his gloves stung by a Balotelli pile-driver and Dries Mertens fired at the goalkeeper.

There was controversy on 22 minutes when Mertens sprung the offside trap and Abbiati rushed out of the box to clatter into him. By that point the Belgian had already lobbed wide, but the referee awarded a free kick with a yellow card for the goalkeeper, not considering it a clear soring opportunity. From that free kick, Mertens tested Abbiati again.

Higuain had the ball in the net after being flagged marginally offside, while Abbiati got a hand to Hamsik’s strike. Jorginho chipped up a pass for Hamsik, whose stunning volley was inches away from the near top corner.

Napoli had a triple opportunity just before half-time. First Abbiati parried Lorenzo Insigne’s attempt from point-blank range, then Cristian Maggio hit the follow-up against the base of the near upright and as the move continued Insigne’s header was inches wide of the far post.

Kaka had been ill for several days with gastroenteritis, but replaced Robinho for the second half, while Urby Emanuelson went into a forward role with Abate returning to full-back.

Federico Fernandez’s glancing header from a corner was just about controlled by Abbiati, then an Insigne curler was inches wide of the far top corner. Taarabt was booked for dissent.

Napoli turned the game around completely, as Higuain sprung the offside trap from an inspired Inler ball over the top and got away from Mexes for a looping header past Abbiati.

Higuain’s chest and volley was not far off target and Reina had to beat away a viciously dipping Essien strike. It was almost 3-1, as Higuain again got between centre-backs on a Jorginho chipped pass, but this time scuffed the volley.

Taarabt nearly completed his brace, dribbling between defenders to unleash a strike that Reina spilled just past the waiting Balotelli. Moments later Reina rushed off his line to challenge Balotelli and completely missed the ball, but SuperMario wasn’t expecting it and went wide with an open goal in front of him. He was substituted soon after and was caught on camera crying on the bench, attempting to hide his face behind a coat.

Reina just about palmed an Abate cross off the feet of substitute Giampaolo Pazzini, then made himself big to close off Pazzini when he sprung the offside trap.

Napoli extended their lead with a well-worked move. Hamsik threaded through for Insigne down the right, who rolled across for Higuain to blast in from nine yards.

Napoli: Reina; Maggio, Fernandez, Albiol, Ghoulam; Inler (Dzemaili 88), Jorginho; Mertens, Hamsik (Behrami 83), Insigne (Callejon 78); Higuain

Milan: Abbiati; De Sciglio, Mexes, Rami, Emanuelson (Montolivo 69); De Jong, Essien; Abate, Taarabt, Robinho (Kaka 46); Balotelli (Pazzini 73)

Ref: Massa

Serie A: Napoli vs. AC Milan - lineups
8.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Napoli: Reina; Maggio, Fernandez, Albiol, Ghoulam; Inler, Jorginho; Mertens, Hamsik, Insigne; Higuain.

Napoli bench: Rafael, Colombo, Uvini, Henrique, Britos, Behrami, Dzemaili, Radosevic, Pandev, Callejon, Duvan Zapata.

Milan: Abbiati; De Sciglio, Mexes, Rami, Emanuelson; De Jong, Essien; Abate, Taarabt, Robinho; Balotelli.

Milan bench: Amelia, Gabriel, Constant, Silvestre, Zaccardo, Montolivo, Poli, Muntari, Saponara, Kaka, Petagna, Pazzini.

Maradona: 'Napoli and Balotelli'
8.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Diego Armando Maradona is confident Napoli will beat Milan tonight, but “I’d love to be Mario Balotelli’s Coach.”

The Stadio San Paolo hosts the Serie A clash this evening at 19.45 GMT.

“A prediction? Napoli to win, certainly! Even if Clarence Seedorf is changing Milan’s image, I hope he’ll only start a winning streak after this game...

“I always watch Napoli on television and also saw their Coppa Italia semi-final with Roma, so I’ve been able to appreciate their step up in quality this season,” Maradona told Rcs Sport.

“However, Rafa Benitez’s team is not yet as winning as ours was. We were able to win everywhere.”

Asked about Milan forward Balotelli, El Pibe de Oro was impressed.

“I would really love to be Balotelli’s Coach. I don’t know why everyone goes against him, as they make his life more difficult.

“At the World Cup in Brazil I am sure a South American side will win, hopefully Argentina if they can resolve their defensive problems.”

Balotelli: 'Now I am a father...'
8.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan and Italy striker Mario Balotelli wrote an open letter after DNA tests proved he is the father of Pia.

The little girl was born to his ex-girlfriend Raffaella Fico on December 5 2012, but only now has the DNA test been performed to confirm his paternity after years of bitter accusations and recriminations from both sides.

“As I had said, if the tribunal confirmed I was Pia’s father, I am ready to take my responsibility,” wrote Balotelli in an open letter to TV programme Verissimo.

“I want to do it in silence, far away from everything that is media-related, when dealing with such an important rapport as the one that ties a parent to their child.

“I will not take part in any TV shows, because my work is performed on a pitch. I don’t want any speculation on this matter.

“I wrote about the DNA results on Twitter because I grew up with manners, values and know the value of the words ‘love’ and ‘affection.’

“Writing ‘Dad’ gave me an explosion of emotion, but now I want to keep this joy for myself. I hope my silence can help to avoid any further controversy on TV or in the papers.

“I hope my silence can help people understand there is a child here who doesn’t know how the media or television worlds work. I hope my few words can help to definitively put an end to this affair.

“With affection, Mario, who today waits for his daughter far away from the media spotlight and hopefully one day on the touchline to cheer on Milan and her daddy.”

Henrique ready for Napoli - AC Milan
8.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Henrique is ready for his Napoli debut after being included in the squad against Milan tonight.

This Serie A clash kicks off at 19.45 GMT.

Rafa Benitez only released his full squad for the game this morning, leaving it late to help Henrique’s paperwork go through.

The Brazilian defender was signed from Palmeiras on transfer deadline day for €4m.

Anthony Reveillere is on the injury list along with Giandomenico Mesto and Juan Camilo Zuniga.

Napoli squad for Milan: Rafael, Reina, Colombo, Albiol, Britos, Fernandez, Ghoulam, Henrique, Maggio, Uvini, Behrami, Dzemaili, Hamsik, Inler, Jorginho, Radosevic, Callejon, Mertens, Higuain, Insigne, Pandev, Duvan Zapata.

Mancini: 'Seedorf can be a success'
8.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Galatasaray boss Roberto Mancini believes Clarence Seedorf “needs time” to be a success at Milan.

The ex-Inter and Manchester City manager sat down with Sky Sport Italia to analyse the situation at San Siro.

“Milan had a drop in form when they sold their best players, which seems normal enough to me. If you sell Thiago Silva and Zlatan Ibrahimovic along with all the players who made history with the club, then the team is going to go through moments of difficulty.

“Seedorf needs time, just like all Coaches starting out, so he’ll need to go through a few mistakes and a few things that don’t go well. It is certainly an advantage that he already knows Milan, just like Antonio Conte did at Juventus.”

Milan visit Napoli in tonight's Serie A game at 19.45 GMT.

The Rossoneri will face Atletico Madrid in the Champions League on February 19 and March 11.

“Milan were not in an easy group. In my view every game must be played right to the end, especially in Europe, as there are no foregone conclusions,” added Mancini.

Ronaldo: Balotelli is a great player
8.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Cristiano Ronaldo has urged fans and reporters to judge Mario Balotelli ‘for what he does on the pitch’.

The Real Madrid forward gave an interview to Sky Sport Italia this evening, and turned his attention to the Milan striker, who he believes is an exceptional footballer.

“I don’t know Mario personally but what he does outside of the pitch I don’t really care about,” he told the channel.

“For me, he’s always seemed like a good player. He’s managed to make his mark at Milan and with the Italian national team.

“I’d say, judge him on what he does on the pitch – what happens in private is not really anyone’s business.

“My favourite player in Serie A? To be honest, I don’t really follow the Italian League.”

Honda misses Napoli clash
8.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Keisuke Honda will miss Milan’s clash with Napoli on Saturday after coming down with gastroenteritis.

The Rossoneri travel to Stadio San Paolo tomorrow looking for the three points that could take them up to eighth in the table.

But they will do so without the Japan international, who will not travel because of illness.

New signings Adel Taarabt and Michael Essien do make the list though.

Milan squad for Napoli: Abbiati, Amelia, Gabriel, Abate, Constant, De Sciglio, Mexes, Rami, Silvestre, Zaccardo, Emanuelson, Essien, De Jong, Kakà, Montolivo, Muntari, Poli, Saponara, Taarabt (23), Balotelli, Pazzini, Petagna, Robinho

AC Milan offer Alex contract
7.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Reports in the Italian Press have claimed that Milan are interested in signing Paris Saint-Germain defender Alex.

Sport Mediaset believe that the Rossoneri are keen to bring in the Brazilian centre-back, and have offered him a contract to join.

The 31-year-old has been virtually ever-present for the Ligue 1 side this season, playing in 20 domestic matches.

But the television station claims that Clarence Seedorf wants to sign the defender, and has tabled a two-year deal.

Alex, if he accepts, will reportedly earn €2.8m per season for two years, with the option of a third.

Seedorf: Napoli not a test, but...
7.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf says Milan cannot look at Napoli as ‘an examination’, but admits the weekend meeting is an important one.

The Rossoneri travel south to the San Paolo on Saturday evening for the Week 23 fixture substantially further down the table than their rivals.

“Tomorrow we face a great team,” Seedorf introduced to reporters today.

“Their moment of difficulty is based on recent results. But they are good, they have strong players. I expect to face a team in good shape.

“I do not think that the game is an examination for us though, our goal is to grow. Before you take an examination, you need many hours of study, and we have had few.

“This game is important for us, against a strong team, despite recent results.

“It’s a good time to see where we are, we will do everything to win. This will always be our mentality, whilst always with respect to the strength of this team.

“Benitez? He is a football great, he has travelled and has worked in several countries.

“He is an educated man, for this I expect to see a Napoli at their best. Precisely because of his experience that he has brought to the club.

“The planned line-up? Kaka is better, we hope he can recover. I have so many ideas, but we also have some players who are not yet 100 per cent.

“I will have to wait before making my final decisions. There are positives, but I have to wait.

“Essien and Taarabt have integrated well. Bonera has a small issue, Kaka is affected. Silvestre is recovered, but he needs to train.”

Seedorf also spoke to Milan Channel and was asked about travelling out to Madrid last weekend to catch Milan’s Champions League Last 16 opponents in person.

“I took the opportunity to go to Madrid, Champions League matches are based on details. Seeing them with my own eyes is more help. Today is not the day to talk about Atletico.

“In training we are moving ahead on a daily basis, the guys are working well, with determination. It takes time and patience, for everything to be channelled.

“I am convinced that the closer you are to the opponent, the ball can be immediately won back. Against Cagliari we saw this. It takes balance and a single thought of the team, for when to press and when to not.

“The formation? Despite the short time, we have created many chances but taken few. But it takes time, the wheels are in motion.

“All the players must identify with this philosophy, not the formation. The formation is on paper, but many squads have players that are mobile. I want to create a very clear philosophy.”

'Taarabt must knuckle down'
7.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Harry Redknapp has wished Adel Taarabt luck at Milan and advised him to ‘knuckle down’ to make a success of the switch.

The playmaker ended a season long loan at Fulham last month to complete a similar temporary move to the end of the campaign with Milan.

For his parent club’s manager, the move is one that Taarabt must focus on in order to make the most of.

“I hope he does well there, good luck to him,” Redknapp has mused this week to reporters.

“He went to Fulham but it didn't work out, he couldn't get a game.

“It's an amazing game, isn't it? You can't get a game at Fulham at the bottom of the Premier League and then you go to Milan!

“Years ago to get to Milan you had to be a world-class superstar.

“So it’s a great move for him and I hope he knuckles down and does well. He’s got the talent, it's just himself.”

Muntari: 'Seedorf knows everything'
7.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Sulley Muntari hailed new Milan Coach Clarence Seedorf, but Max Allegri “will always remain in my heart.”

The midfielder spoke to Sky Sport Italia only a few weeks into Seedorf’s tenure as a tactician.

“When we were on the field together, he’d always give me a lot of advice, so the rapport between us has not changed,” said the Ghana international.

“He is now our Coach and continues to give us all advice. We need to follow his orders because he is wonderful and I can tell from the training sessions he can do very well.

“We are all convinced of Seedorf’s qualities, because he knows everything about football.”

Seedorf was drafted in earlier than expected due to the dismissal of Allegri last month.

“I was upset at his sacking, as is only normal when someone dear to you is sent away,” continued Muntari.

“He was the one who wanted me at Milan and I will forever be grateful for that. He will always remain in my heart like all my other Coaches, from Jose Mourinho to Luciano Spalletti and Giampiero Ventura.”

Cristante out for a month
6.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan midfielder Bryan Cristante will be out of action for a month after fracturing his fibula.

The Canadian-Italian sustained the injury during a training session on Wednesday.

This evening the club announced he has an incomplete fracture of the base of the fibula and will be out of action for a month if there are no complications.

It means he will miss both legs of the Champions League Round of 16 tie against Atletico Madrid.

Still only 18, Cristante has made four senior appearances for Milan this season, scoring one goal.

Niang arrested
6.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan-owned striker Mbaye Niang is in custody after reportedly lying about a car accident and resisting arrest.

The teenage striker is currently on loan at Montpellier, but seems to have lost none of his penchant for trouble.

French police confirmed Niang was “summoned and detained” at a station after his Ferrari crashed into a tree near the Montpellier training ground.

At first he had denied being at the wheel and reportedly left when police arrived, as he had his driving licence suspended due to accumulation of points.

This isn’t entirely new behaviour, as Niang famously drove in Milan without a valid licence and told traffic police he was teammate Bakaye Traorè instead.

Niang has scored three goals in four Ligue 1 games for Montpellier.

Balotelli: 'I don't miss England'
6.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mario Balotelli admits there’s little he misses about life with Manchester City after his move to Milan.

The striker returned to Italy in January 2013 for £19m after a series of disciplinary issues and is rediscovering his form at San Siro.

Sitting down with FourFourTwo magazine, SuperMario was asked what he missed about Manchester City.

“I miss the fans. I’ll tell you what I don’t miss, though. I don’t miss the food, or the weather, or the stupid way you’re always expected to drive over there. But yeah, the City fans, I miss them. Even though the Milan fans are just as good.

“I have to say, most of my memories of Manchester are really happy ones. I enjoyed myself there.

“It wasn’t that much of a culture shock for me to go to England. There’s not a great deal of difference between the two clubs.”

On Wednesday Balotelli hit the headlines in Italy after tweeting the result of DNA tests proving Pia – the baby had by his former girlfriend Raffaella Fico – was indeed his daughter.

Kaka unlikely to face Napoli
6.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Ricky Kaka is increasingly likely to miss Saturday’s Napoli-Milan match, as he skipped training again today.

The Brazilian has been suffering from flu symptoms and did not train with his teammates on Wednesday or Thursday.

As the Serie A game is on Saturday night and the Rossoneri must also prepare for the Champions League encounter with Atletico Madrid, it is likely Kaka will be rested until he has fully recovered.

This would suggest Keisuke Honda, Robinho and newcomer Adel Taarabt are to be the trio supporting Mario Balotelli.

Michael Essien could possibly also receive his Milan debut in midfield.

Saponara: Seedorf faith important
6.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan’s Riccardo Saponara has praised new Coach Clarence Seedorf and says he wants to repay the faith shown in him by the Dutchman.

Seedorf has taken seven points from a possible nine since taking over at San Siro and the midfielder is convinced there is more to come from the Rossoneri.

“On Saturday against Torino we had a lot of the ball in their half of the pitch,” Saponara told the Milan Channel ahead of their clash this weekend with Napoli.

“We were very good at winning the ball high up the pitch.

“We are starting to play how the manager wants us to, we are a work in progress and I am sure we will continue to improve, especially in terms of results.

“I can really feel the faith that Seedorf has in the team, like I did with Allegri, and I will do my best to repay the faith he has put in me.”

The 22-year-old endured a frustrating start to the season but, having now returned from injury once more, he insists he is fully committed to his team’s cause.

“My season didn’t start as I hoped but wearing the Milan shirt has always been my dream,” he stated.

“I am getting physically stronger and I’m happy to be back.

“I’m ready to step in and help the team whenever the boss gives me the call.”

The Rossoneri face Napoli on Saturday and Saponara was confident of his team’s chances of getting a positive result.

“Napoli haven’t had good results recently but they are still a great team,” he said.

“But we’re going there to play a good game and to bring home three important points.

“We have all the quality needed to impose our game on Napoli.”

Montolivo: I will strive to improve
6.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Riccardo Montolivo has considered his personal and professional focus for 2014: “I will strive to improve myself.”

The midfielder sat down with for a recent interview which, beyond discussing developments in his personal life, such as a recent engagement to his girlfriend, saw the 29-year-old muse on his objectives for the future.

“My personal objectives, well clearly, the wedding,” began Montolivo in conversation with Dolce & Gabbana.

“From the professional point of view, however, I will strive to improve myself, I’ll try to do that.

“Also clearly there is the objective of the World Cup, which for a player is the most important competition you can participate in. In 2014, there is also this to think about.”

Montolivo was also asked where he sees himself 20 years from now.

“Who knows? Who knows… In 20 years, I see myself… I don’t know, with a big family, happy I hope, serene, and I hope that I have gained satisfaction with Milan.

“Will I still be playing then? Maybe five-a-side with my friends?”

Agazzi: 'The AC Milan links are nice, but...'
6.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Michael Agazzi has mused that whilst links with Milan are ‘nice’, he is currently only focused on new club Chievo.

The goalkeeper moved to the Flying Donkeys from Cagliari last month, but only on a short-term deal, maintaining his original contract length in Sardinia, leaving him a free agent come the summer.

It is a situation that is in place reportedly as Agazzi has an agreement to join Milan, but like the club, the 29-year-old is remaining non-committal on the subject.

“The rumours are nice, but I have not signed any contract,” Agazzi has commented at his presentation with Chievo this week.

“I am focused on giving my best for Chievo, towards achieving survival.

“I want to thank the club and the President at Chievo, I see these next four-and-a-half months as an opportunity.

“I found myself on the outside of the team in Cagliari and although Cellino and the club gave me a lot, I want to take this period as an opportunity to grow.

“I want to make it difficult for Corini to make his team selections, and I will give my best for the team.

“The goalkeepers to have come this way have been very great.”

Mourinho: Mazzarri, Seedorf need time
6.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Jose Mourinho says that Walter Mazzarri and Clarence Seedorf both need time and faith in order to restore Inter and Milan respectively.

Both clubs are enduring difficult seasons, but the Nerazzurri’s former treble-winning tactician believes that a return to success won’t be as immediate as the fans may hope.

“I believe that Mazzarri and Seedorf only need time and confidence from the club and the fans,” Mourinho has mused in today’s edition of the Gazzetta dello Sport.

“Let’s be honest - there are not so many top players in their squads to build a ‘supersquad’ in a few months. No, it takes time and faith.

“I am and will always be an Interista. I think that Mazzarri deserves this trust and needs time.

“I’m not a Milanista, of course, but I respect the club and its great prestige - I hope that Clarence can work with peace of mind.

“And that he can bring our rivals Milan to the higher positions in the table. Because Italian football needs the giants of Milan.”

Mourinho was asked of Inter’s change of ownership, which has seen Massimo Moratti step down as President and be replaced by Erick Thohir.

“Moratti has done so much, so much for Inter - he deserves respect, not criticism. He too is looking forward to the days of joy returning to his team.

“Inter are in good hands, with Thohir I had dinner once in Jakarta, I can say that he inherited from his father the same passion for Inter.

“In short, I ask for time and confidence in all of them.”

AC Milan track Freiburg's Baumann
6.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

German newspapers claim Milan are interested in Freiburg goalkeeper Oliver Baumann.

The Rossoneri are looking for a new shot-stopper for next season, as Christian Abbiati is considering retirement.

According to Bild, they have targeted Freiburg’s 23-year-old Baumann, a former Germany Under-21 international.

His contract runs until June 2018 and has a buy-out clause worth €7.5m.

Baumann is best known for a viral video of his three howlers that gifted Hamburg a 3-0 victory in October.

It became popularly known as ‘the worst goalkeeping performance in Bundesliga history.’

Biabiany signs new Parma deal
5.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Jonathan Biabiany has officially extended his contract with Parma, ending links with Milan, Lazio and Guangzhou Evergrande.

The French winger had been on the verge of an exit on transfer deadline day, but rejected moves to Lazio and China.

His club turned down the offer from Milan because they wanted him on loan with an option to buy rather than a mandatory buy-out clause.

This evening Biabiany tweeted a photograph of himself signing the new deal and wrote: “Here’s the extension with Parma.”

The 25-year-old has been at the Stadio Tardini since July 2012.

Kaka ill and Balotelli is a Dad
5.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Kaka is suffering from flu ahead of Napoli-Milan on Saturday, while Mario Balotelli discovered he’s a father.

Ricky Kaka did not take part in today’s training session at Milanello as he was suffering from flu-related symptoms.

It remains to be seen how quickly he can shake off the illness with a crunch Serie A match against Napoli coming up on Saturday evening.

Coach Clarence Seedorf might not want to risk him so close to the Champions League encounter with Atletico Madrid.

Adel Taarabt was tested out with Keisuke Honda and Robinho behind Balotelli, while Riccardo Montolivo and Michael Essien challenged for the role next to Nigel De Jong in midfield.

Meanwhile, Balotelli revealed via Twitter that he is the father of Pia, the baby who was born on December 5 2012 from his former girlfriend Raffaella Fico.

“Finally the TRUTH : - ) ... PIA ... Sweet child of mine!!! your Dad.”

He had been waiting for a DNA test, having refused to have any contact with the child until he was entirely certain the baby was his.

The pair fought via the media and struggled through lawyers to decide on when or how to complete the DNA tests.

Parma delighted with Biabiany stay
5.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Parma director Pietro Leonardi has claimed that the club are ‘proud and happy’ to have kept hold of Jonathan Biabiany.

It looked almost certain that the wide man would leave the Crociati in January, with Milan, Lazio and Guangzhou Evergrande all registering an interest in the French winger.

However, having staved off bids from those clubs, the Ennio Tardini director has insisted that the former Inter man is focused on doing well for Roberto Donadoni’s team.

“Biabiany never asked to leave,” he told a Press conference. “The Chinese club came forward via intermediaries, but there was never anything absolutely concrete.

“Lazio’s focus on the player has been known for some time, but we must have done something right to keep him.

“As I’ve said, we’re delighted he’s here. We’re very proud that Biabiany has decided to stay.”

Stam agent: Money the only issue
5.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Jaap Stam’s agent believes that if Milan want the former defender, they will have to splash the cash.

The former Netherlands international is rumoured to be of interest to Clarence Seedorf, who wants to bring the 41-year-old to San Siro as assistant.

The one-time Rossoneri centre-back though, is currently at Ajax as a technical director and has a contract until 2016.

His representative though, has claimed that if the Diavolo want to bring the Dutchman in, they’ll have to cash out.

“I think the only question is going to be the money,” Henk Van Ginkel briefly told Voetbal International.

Puma to finance Balotelli / Arsenal move?
5.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Stories have emerged in the British Press suggesting that Mario Balotelli could be on his way to Arsenal in the summer.

The controversial striker recently signed a boot deal with Puma, and The Guardian claim that the German manufacturer are willing to finance part of a deal that would see the Italy international sign for Arsene Wenger’s men.

It was confirmed earlier this week that Puma had agreed a record-breaking £150m sponsorship deal with the north London club.

And the paper reports that, in order to boost their brand, the sports company would be happy to see one of their major signings join the Emirates outfit.

No figures have been put forward however, with the Rossoneri unlikely to want to sell their star man.

Taarabt: AC Milan a dream come true
5.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adel Taarabt has conceded that it’s a ‘dream come true’ to sign for Milan, as he was officially presented this afternoon.

The playmaker joined on loan until the end of the season from Queens Park Rangers, and the Morocco international has admitted that he jumped at the chance to play for the Rossoneri.

“For me it was a great joy to hear about Milan’s interest in me,” he told the gathering reporters.

“I’ve got loads of enthusiasm and once I passed the medical tests and completed all the admin, it was a dream come true signing for Milan.

“I’m honoured to be here, I’m at a top club. It’s a big change for me and I cannot wait to make my debut with this shirt.

“I’m still really young and they say I’ve got talent. It’s been a while now that people have said that I should be playing in a big team. During my days with QPR, I was linked with PSG but nothing happened. I’m here now and I can’t wait to show my true worth.

The 24-year-old then commented on his preferred position and the idea of working with Clarence Seedorf.

“My preferred position is where the Coach wants me to play. Near the striker, on the right, the left, behind the front two.

“I hope that Milan is a platform for me to show my abilities and to give everything to the team. I chose my new number on my friend’s advice.

“He’s a big rossoneri fan and he advised me to choose the number 23 jersey if it was free.

“I’m proud to play in a similar role that Coach Seedorf played in when he was a player. He’s fantastic. I think I can learn a lot from him.

“It’s a great chance for me and I’ve got great respect for Seedorf as a player and as a coach. I haven’t got a difficult character. Perhaps some find it hard to accept direct and sincere people.

“In football in general, these type of characters aren’t always appreciated. I’m really the complete opposite, I like to joke and this can be misinterpreted.

“I will be friends will all my team-mates. It’s true that when Milan were interested in me, I thought ‘well, they’ve got the Italian Balotelli and now they’re going to also have the Balotelli of Morocco’.

“I can’t wait to get to know Balotelli better and to become his friend. Milan have shown great faith in me by inserting me in the Champions League squad list.

“However, I’m really motivated and I can’t wait to show my worth in Serie A and play my part in the Champions League against Atletico Madrid.”

Galliani rejects Cagliari rumour
5.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adriano Galliani has rejected claims that he will leave Milan for Cagliari in the summer.

Reports earlier on Wednesday suggested that the Rossoneri director would be offered a three-year deal with the Isolani to oversee football-related issues, with President Massimo Cellino taking a backseat.

But the San Siro board member has insisted that he wants to stay with Clarence Seedorf’s men.

“It’s not true,” he told Milan Channel. “I will never betray Milan. My heart will always be Rossoneri.

“I will never go to a club in competition with Milan.

“I’ve been here 28 years and I want to stay.”

Inter head Vidic queue
5.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Speculation mounts that Inter are close to agreeing a deal with Manchester United defender Nemanja Vidic.

It was revealed on Tuesday that the Nerazzurri were sending representatives to Old Trafford to try and negotiate terms with the Serbia international.

And Sky Sport Italia have confirmed this morning that the San Siro outfit are at the head of the queue to sign the 32-year-old in the summer.

Napoli, Roma, Juventus, Fiorentina and Milan are all said to be keen on Vidic, but it is Walter Mazzarri’s side who are said to be closest to an agreement.

The Manchester United man is out of contract in the summer, and is therefore allowed to talk to other teams during the next few months.

Agent: 'De Sciglio has a great future'
5.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mattia De Sciglio’s agent has backed the youngster to be one of the leading talents in Italian football.

The Milan youngster has struggled with injuries this season, playing just nine League games all term.

But the 21-year-old’s representative has insisted that with those knocks behind him, the full-back can go on to be one of the very best.

“De Sciglio has a great future ahead of him,” Giovanni Branchini told Sky journalist Gianluca Di Marzio.

“His age, personality and characteristics all mean he can be the best.

“Even with all his experience in the Champions League and with the national team, Mattia still has so many of his best years to come.

“Whenever he’s been called up, he’s always done well – even in the Confederation Cup.

“More or less all of his Coaches have focused on Mattia, ever since the Primavera.”

Cagliari want Galliani
5.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Cagliari want to hand the directorial reins to Milan man Adriano Galliani, according to reports this morning.

The Rossoneri board member was on the verge of leaving San Siro last year when his resignation was, after much pondering, rejected by President Silvio Berlusconi.

The reason for wanting to depart was down to a falling out with Barbara Berlsuconi, who is still at the club.

And Tuttosport believe that the Isolani will look to take advantage of that situation by offering Galliani a three-year deal to take sole charge of the club, with President Massimo Cellino taking a back-seat.

It is not clear however, what Milan’s or Galliani’s stance on this offer will be.

Italian trio in Champions Cup
4.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan, Inter and Roma will all compete in the Guinness International Champions Cup in North America in the summer.

The pre-season tournament is in its second year, and the competition’s announcers revealed the eight teams that will take part.

Milan, Inter and Roma are the Serie A representatives, whilst Real Madrid, Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City and Olympiacos complete the line-up.

The tournament will consist of two groups of four, with the winners facing off in a final in Miami.

Group games, which are yet to be revealed, will take place in Charlotte, Dallas, Denver, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Pittsburgh and Washington D.C, between July 26 and August 4.

Abbiati on Seedorf impact
4.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Christian Abbiati has praised the impact that Clarence Seedorf has had on the team since coming in as Coach.

The former midfielder was named as Massimiliano Allegri’s successor last month, and the goalkeeper has admitted that the Dutchman has brought new ideas to the table.

“Seedorf’s impact has been great,” he told Milan Channel. “He’s come in and changed things around.

“He’s brought in some new ideas, and hopefully they will make a difference on the pitch.

“Obviously though, the sacking of Allegri was a disappointment for us players – it shows that we have failed.”

The goalkeeper then commented on reports that Michael Agazzi will come in next season, and the upcoming Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid.

“I’m not thinking about my future at the moment. But competition is always good for a goalkeeper.

“Atletico Madrid? It’s going to be a great game. In my opinion, in terms of form, they are the best team in Europe.”

Boateng on AC Milan past
4.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Schalke attacker Kevin-Prince Boateng has sent a good luck message to new Milan Coach Clarence Seedorf.

The Ghana international left the Rossoneri last summer to join the Bundesliga outfit, but has admitted that he is still a fan of the San Siro outfit at heart.

“I have sent Mr Seedorf a message of good luck,” he told Chi. “I still talk to a lot of my former teammates there.

“It’s a difficult situation for the lads at the moment, but with the phenomenon that is Mario Balotelli, anything is possible.

“Mario was my accomplice when I was at Milan. We have the same look, listen to the same music.

“When I was there I used to tease him: ‘yes Mario, you’re my hero!’

“For me, Milan is still an open wound. I watch all the games on TV. It makes me sad to think that that’s it for me there.”

Agent: 'Much expected of Robinho'
4.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Robinho’s agent has mused that ‘it is normal to expect a lot’ from the Brazilian, amid whistles from the San Siro support.

The forward has come under scrutiny for recent inconsistency for the Rossoneri and been whistled by sections of the home support.

However, Robinho’s agent has defended the crowd’s response as a natural reaction to what is expected of the 30-year-old.

“I interpret the discontent as expectations in relation to a very talented player,” Marisa Ramos has mused to today.

“From a player like Robinho, it is normal to expect a lot. Robinho, on the other hand, has always been treated very well at Milan and managed important thing with individual play of great quality.

“The value of the player is known and therefore always a lot is expected. And even though he is going through a difficult moment, perhaps the fans always expect 100 per cent.

“Clearly the situation makes him sad, but he is aware that the whistles are due to the fact that we expect a lot from him on account of his quality.

“Would he consider a return to Brazil because of this? No. Robinho is a professional and understands that he must put in a better performance.

“He has a contract with the Rossoneri and wants to repay them.”

Round 22 suspensions
4.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

The Giudice Sportiva have confirmed that 12 players have been given a one-game ban after this weekend’s round of fixtures.

Milan will be without Daniele Bonera for their game with Napoli on Saturday after he was booked against Torino.

Whilst Lazio midfielder Lucas Biglia will also be sidelined for the Rome derby after being booked for the fifth time against Chievo.

Week 22 suspensions: Biglia (Lazio), Bonera (Milan), Dessena (Cagliari), Frey (Chievo Verona), Kone (Bologna), Allan (Udinese), Mbaye (Livorno), Pedro Mendes (Sassuolo), Moscardelli (Bologna), Mustafi (Sampdoria), Pinzi (Udinese), Radovanovic (Chievo Verona).

AC Milan announce Champions League squad
3.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan have today announced their 24-man ‘A’ squad for the knockout stages of the Champions League.

The Rossoneri have been paired with Atletico Madrid in the Last 16 that kicks off later this month.

And they will do so with new signings Adil Rami, Michael Essien and Adel Taarabt amongst their number.

Young striker Stephan El Shaarawy meanwhile, has been placed on the ‘B’ list which is to be used in case of emergencies.

Goalkeepers: 1. Amelia, 32. Abbiati, 35. Coppola

Defenders: 2. De Sciglio, 5. Mexes, 13. Rami, 17. Zapata, 20. Abate, 21. Constant, 25. Bonera, 81. Zaccardo.

Midfielders: 4. Muntari, 14. Birsa, 15. Essien, 16. Poli, 18. Montolivo, 24. Cristante, 28. Emanuelson, 34. de Jong.

Attackers: 7. Robinho, 11. Pazzini, 22. Kakà, 23. Taarabt, 45. Balotelli.

Report: AC Milan and Juventus in for Cerci
3.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

January may be over, but transfer rumours abound that Milan and Juventus will fight it out for Torino’s Alessio Cerci.

The duo were linked with moves for the Toro winger last month, but despite missing out on him in the winter, CalcioMercato suggest that they will endeavour to acquire his services at the end of the season.

Cerci has impressed for Giampiero Ventura’s men this term, and it is believed that the Turin outfit would cash in on the Italy international should the correct offer be forthcoming.

It’s claimed that €20m would be enough for Cerci to leave Torino, a fee that the Rossoneri and the Bianconeri both, although slightly high, would be willing to part with for the wide man.

David Villa to miss AC Milan date?
3.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Atletico Madrid could be without talismanic striker David Villa for the first leg of their Champions League Last 16 clash with Milan.

The 32-year-old was forced off with a muscular injury shortly after scoring in Atleti’s 4-0 win over Real Sociedad on Sunday, a win which lifted them to the top of La Liga.

It is unclear yet as to exactly how long the forward will be missing, but reports in Spain are that he has suffered a thigh injury and is facing between 10 days and up to three weeks on the sidelines.

Depending on the severity of the injury and the speed of his recovery, it puts the striker’s availability for the first leg of Atletico’s Champions League Last 16 clash with Milan on February 19 in doubt.

Either way, the hope is that El Guaje will at least be fit for the return leg on March 11 at the Vicente Calderon.

Parma plan Biabiany extension
3.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Parma CEO Pietro Leonardi has hinted at plans to hand Jonathan Biabiany a new contract, as he muses on the postponed game at Roma yesterday.

The Gialloblu were negotiating with Milan on deadline day of the January transfer market for Biabiany’s possible move to San Siro, only for talks to break down.

On from reportedly then turning down an approach from Lazio, the Frenchman could be in line for an extension to his stay at the Ennio Tardini.

“We are very proud that Biabiany has wanted to stay,” Leonardi has commented today to Parma’s official website.

“It means that there is a valid project at the club. We will strengthen his will to remain by giving continuity to the contract that binds us.

“By the way, it is absolutely not true that we went out to offer our players, because we have very good kids that we value very much.

“Donadoni? I would like to congratulate him, because he has shown great maturity. Regardless of the many rumours that have come and gone during this transfer window, he has been able to lead the team to the top, maintaining tranquillity and serenity, when it has not been easy to do so.”

Parma’s Week 22 fixture with Roma will today be rearranged, after the original game yesterday was abandoned early into the first half due to a waterlogged pitch.

“It was right to try to play, but it was equally appropriate to postpone the game. Both for the spectacle and the players’ safety.

“Of course, we are sorry for all the fans who came to the stadium, especially for ours who have embarked on a long journey and will have to come back here in a few weeks, but we could not do otherwise.

Galliani: 'Agazzi? We'll see'
3.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adriano Galliani has tempered reports on Milan signing Michael Agazzi, praised Atletico Madrid and enthused at the Rossoneri’s progress.

Reports yesterday indicated that a deal to pick up goalkeeper Agazzi at the end of his Cagliari contract in the summer has been agreed.

Whilst the Gazzetta dello Sport add further this morning that the agreement is for a two-year contract from June through to the end of the 2015-16 season, Milan’s Vice-President has played speculation down.

“Agazzi is a hypothesis, but it is not true that a deal is already done,” Galliani has told gathered reporters today.

“He is a player at the end of his contract, we will evaluate and see come the first of July.”

Meanwhile, Sunday also saw Coach Clarence Seedorf in the Spanish capital to catch Atletico Madrid against Real Sociedad, ahead of the Rossoneri’s Champions League Last 16 meeting last this month with Diego Simeone’s side.

“I have not spoken to Clarence yet, he must return from Spain, last night I saw a little of La Liga. Atletico are demonstrating an extraordinary athletic condition, they have a great Coach.

“From the beginning of the season they have done very well, in their minds, something super.”

Milan drew 1-1 at home to Torino in Week 22 and remain six points adrift of the European qualification positions.

“Too bad that those in third, fourth and fifth lost, if we had won then we would have shortened the gap a little bit. It did not happen, we hope it will in the coming weeks.

“Is the team less daring? I am not the Coach, ask Clarence.

“The team seems to be changing, they are doing everything well, we have changed formation, the players are applying themselves and we are very satisfied.”

Seedorf starts Atletico scouting
3.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf was in the stands to watch Milan’s Champions League opponents Atletico Madrid move top of La Liga.

On from seeing his Rossoneri held to a 1-1 draw on the Saturday evening by Torino, the Gazzetta dello Sport say that Seedorf flew out to the Spanish capital to catch the Sunday evening clash between Atleti and Real Sociedad, for a closer look at Milan’s Champions League Last 16 opponents.

Atleti, who won 4-0 on the night to move to the top of the Primera Division for the first time since 1996, are welcomed to San Siro on February 19 for the first leg of their European knockout tie, before a return match in Spain on March 11.

AC Milan agree Agazzi terms?
2.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

It’s reported Milan have agreed terms with goalkeeper Michael Agazzi, who will be out of contract in June.

He had been frozen out by Cagliari in recent weeks after refusing to sign an extension and on deadline day was loaned to Chievo for the final six months of that deal.

According to Sky Sport Italia, Milan are in advanced negotiations with Agazzi and have agreed basic terms for him to arrive on a free transfer at the end of the season.

The Rossoneri could well deposit the contract with the Lega Serie A over the next few days, although it won’t actually begin until July 1 2014.

Inter, AC Milan, Roma for Champions Cup
2.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Roma, Inter, Milan, Real Madrid, Manchester United, Liverpool and Manchester City are in the International Champions Cup, but Juventus pull out.

Greek side Olympiakos complete the eight-team competition, whose semi-finals and finals are again at the Sun Life Stadium in Miami on August 3 and 4.

The tournament will be played in 12 cities around the USA and the schedule officially announced on Tuesday.

There are already details leaking out in World Soccer Talk, with a reported Manchester United-Roma match in Denver on July 26 and Inter-Real Madrid in Phoenix the same day.

The pencilled in schedule, which is subject to change, also suggests Manchester City-Milan (Pittsburgh, July 27), Inter-Manchester United (Washington DC, July 29), Roma-Real Madrid (Dallas, July 29), Milan-Liverpool (Philadelphia, July 30), Roma-Inter (New York, August 1), Milan-Olympiakos (Hartford, August 2).

Juventus, Chelsea, Everton, Valencia and LA Galaxy took part in last season’s edition, but appear to have pulled out this time round.

Seedorf explains AC Milan choices
2.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf explained his midfield picks and tactical choices after Milan’s 1-1 draw with Torino. “We need to spread the play.”

Ciro Immobile’s counter-attack had given Toro the lead, but Adil Rami equalised after the break with a deflected piledriver.

“I did say beforehand Giampiero Ventura’s teams are very well-organised and we saw that again tonight. As for my team, we had a little more patience in the second half to spread the play and that made the difference,” he told Sky Sport Italia.

On the touchline, the Coach was seen repeatedly urging Keisuke Honda and Robinho to go wider.

“In the first half Torino were still a little deep, so Honda tried to break through, but you have to spread the play to stretch out opposition defences. It requires patience and my players had more of that after the break, forcing the opponents to move out of position.

“The team is not split between attackers and the rest, let’s not create a cliché. On the goal it was a ricochet that sparked the counter-attack, so you have to take that into account. Torino made the most of their chances to be dangerous in the first half. With our defenders pushing up to support the attack, it’s natural to run a few risks, but it is a calculated risk.”

Seedorf surprised by leaving Nigel De Jong on the bench in favour of Sulley Muntari and Riccardo Montolivo, but explained his choice.

“It was nothing against Nigel, who has done very well, but I knew we’d have a lot of shots from distance and so Muntari and Montolivo are more suited to that role. I also took the opportunity to rest Nigel, as we’ll need him in great shape.

“I believe Rami has great potential and is a very positive lad who is giving us a big hand. He still needs to get to know Italian football, though.

“Urby Emanuelson and Mattia De Sciglio pushed hard and did great. I saw improvements and right now it’s important to focus on the positives and on what we can continue to make better.”

Seedorf has worked with many great tacticians and was asked whether his man-management style was more Carlo Ancelotti than Fabio Capello.

“At the end of the day, all your Coaches ‘infect’ you with something! I think dialogue with players is very important, as you learn things and they feel part of the project. I love it and I believe they consider it to be positive too.”

Serie A: AC Milan 1:1 Torino - match report
1.2 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Scorers: Immobile 18 (T), Rami 50 (M)

Adil Rami’s debut Serie A goal cancelled out Ciro Immobile as Milan were held to a 1-1 draw by Torino.

Clarence Seedorf had the chance to become the first Milan Coach since Luigi Bonizzoni in 1958-59 to win his opening three Serie A games. Mario Balotelli was suspended with Stephan El Shaarawy, Andrea Poli, Cristian Zapata and Matias Silvestre injured, but new buy Michael Essien was on the bench. Toro were flying high in sixth place going into the weekend, although they had lost their last five visits to San Siro.

After just 97 seconds Daniele Padelli needed a fingertip save on Giampaolo Pazzini’s deflected shot, but it was Torino who broke the deadlock with an excellent individual goal.

Ciro Immobile sprung the offside trap in midfield, shimmied past Daniele Bonera in a one-on-one and curled his finish past Christian Abbiati into the far bottom corner with the inside of his right foot.

Moments later Milan almost equalised, as Robinho’s shot was charged down and the ricochet turned into an assist for Pazzini’s audacious overhead kick, bringing a desperate reaction save out of Padelli.

Alexander Farnerud should’ve made it 2-0 on the half-hour mark when Alessio Cerci burst down the right, but the midfielder’s cushioned header was over the bar from six yards.

Sulley Muntari, who surprisingly started in place of Nigel De Jong, hit a powerful effort at Padelli. The Toro goalkeeper did brilliantly to parry Kaka’s fierce swerving strike with a one-handed save and Keisuke Honda’s effort was deflected over from the edge of the box.

Milan did equalise after the restart with Adil Rami’s debut Serie A strike. He combined with Muntari and unleashed a powerful effort from the edge of the box, but it took a decisive deflection to go above Padelli into the far top corner.

The Rossoneri looked like a different team after the restart, as Urby Emanuelson’s ball flashed all the way across the face of goal with Pazzini and Robinho unable to get the final touch. Robinho curled a brilliant finish into the net from a Kaka through ball, but the goal was correctly ruled offside.

Padelli just about dealt with a De Jong snapshot and Mattia Darmian was decisive with his interception to stop Kaka turning in a Pazzini through ball.

Padelli had to back-pedal furiously to fingertip a looping Riccardo Montolivo free kick out from under the bar, but Kamil Glik was accidentally kicked in the face by Pazzini during an acrobatic move gone wrong.

Bonera hauled back Cerci for a yellow card, which means he’ll be suspended against Napoli next week. Abbiati had to come tearing off his line to clear from Cerci, who had burst past Bonera again, and the former Fiorentina winger curled a free kick just over the bar.

Milan: Abbiati; De Sciglio, Bonera, Rami, Emanuelson; Muntari (De Jong 63), Montolivo; Honda (Petagna 89), Kaka, Robinho (Saponara 75); Pazzini

Torino: Padelli; Maksimovic, Glik, Moretti; Darmian, Basha (Kurtic 69), Vives, Farnerud (El Kaddouri 54), Masiello; Immobile, Cerci (Meggiorini 93)

Ref: Damato

This is not the official site of AC Milan SpA nor does have any connections with it.
  © admin*nospam* (replace *nospam* with @). Privacy Policy.