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The Archive

May 2014

Two clubs linked with Essien
30.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

It is reported that Olympiakos and Besiktas are monitoring the situation of Milan midfielder Michael Essien.

The 31-year-old is currently with the Ghana national squad as they continue their preparations for the upcoming World Cup finals in Brazil.

He only joined the Rossoneri from Chelsea in January on what was then an 18-month contract, but has been linked with a move away from San Siro this summer.

Yesterday, the player’s agent said his client’s future would not be decided until after the World Cup, claiming that whether he stays or goes will be decided by whoever is in charge of Milan.

According to Greek outlet Enallax news, the country’s champions Olympiakos are keen on taking the player to Athens. As well as being Greece’s top club, Thrylos would be able to offer Essien guaranteed Champions League football as well as the possibility of domestic silverware.

Turkish outfit Besiktas meanwhile are another team mentioned by as a potential destination for the former Lyon man.

Sacchi to turn down AC Milan?
30.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Arrigo Sacchi is reportedly set to turn down Milan’s advances this summer to return to the club, due to a lack of desire.

The 68-year-old, who won eight major honours during a first period with the Rossoneri as Coach between 1987 and 1991, was speculated recently as due to return to San Siro this summer, as part of the club’s backroom reshuffle.

Sacchi was linked first with replacing Filippo Galli as head of youth development at the club and then with delaying his arrival by a year after Galli apparently turned down the chance to become Pippo Inzaghi’s assistant Coach.

However, the Gazzetta dello Sport indicate today that Sacchi is increasingly disinterested in the proposed return and has explained as much in phone conversations with both Galli and Adriano Galliani.

It is believed that the veteran, currently worked as youth co-ordinator with the Italian Football Federation, has made clear he does not hold the desire to take up a role that would require his attention seven days a week.

No Seedorf resolution yet
30.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Talks between Milan and Clarence Seedorf may go on for a while, as reports indicate no compromise has been reached on the Coach’s exit.

The Rossoneri are seen as having reached agreement with Pippo Inzaghi to come in as their new tactician from the summer, but before announcing anything, they are believed keen to resolve the contractual issue that remains with current Coach Seedorf.

The Dutchman signed a two-and-a-half-year contract with Milan in January and, with two years remaining and €10m gross in wages still due, reports are that the 38-year-old is holding firm in negotiating compensation.

Adriano Galliani reportedly met with the former midfielder’s lawyer Leandro Cantamessa yesterday, but the Gazzetta dello Sport and A Bola are among those reporting that nothing positive came from it.

The indications are that Seedorf is sticking to his position and that talks may continue for a while yet.

The Gazzetta dello Sport also report that the avenue of legal action being taken to bring to an end this situation cannot be ruled out.

Inzaghi: No more AC Milan contact
30.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Pippo Inzaghi has refused to confirm or deny that he is set to be unveiled as Milan’s new Coach.

It appears a formality that the 40-year-old will be appointed as the San Siro giants’ boss, though the departure of current tactician Clarence Seedorf has still not yet been finalised.

Inzaghi, currently still in charge of Milan’s Primavera team, today took training as normal and insisted to journalists that he had heard nothing from the club to suggest his role would be changing anytime soon.

“I wanted to say that I am here to train the Primavera team because I am the Primavera Coach until June 2016,” Inzaghi is quoted as saying by Milan Channel.

“I have had no other communications about it until now, other than what has been written!

“I am a Milan employee. Of course, if Milan call and ask me to fulfil another role I will be very happy, but if not I will remain to coach the Primavera as I have always done.

“If there is no further communication I will preside over the Dossena Tournament, where we will be present. That is what we are preparing for.

“Excited by what I’m reading? Who doesn’t get emotional about what they read? Milan is my life and my story.

“I’ve stopped playing for Milan but I do everything they ask of me. We’ll see what happens, I’m a Milan employee until 2016.

“I could have left but I wanted to stay because I have a contract here. That’s the path I will follow.

“If some good news is communicated to me then great. Otherwise, I am proud to continue coaching these boys.”

Montolivo: I don't know Pippo
30.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan’s Riccardo Montolivo says he has no opinion of Pippo Inzaghi, who appears set to be appointed as Rossoneri Coach.

The San Siro giants are reported to still be attempting to agree a severance package with current boss Clarence Seedorf, who still has two years left to run on his contract.

Speaking at a Press conference at Italy’s Coverciano training base today, the midfielder did not want to discuss the situation at his club side in great detail.

In any case, he said that he was unable to give an informed opinion on Inzaghi, due to the fact he has never been coached by the 40-year-old.

“I can’t give an opinion on him because I don’t know him,” Montolivo told the media this afternoon.

“I will only give an opinion of him if and when he becomes Coach. At the moment the Coach is Clarence Seedorf.

“I have a feeling of confidence that all the fans should also have – the club and the owner are taking these decisions for the good of Milan.

“I am following the situation, but at the moment I don’t think there’s any point in continuing to talk about the subject.”

Montolivo also answered questions on Seedorf’s decision making, the motivation of the Azzurri’s Milan contingent heading into the World Cup and teammate Matteo De Sciglio.

“Every Coach sees football in their own way and they make their decisions for the benefit of the team. Seedorf made some decisions and it was his right to make them.

“Of course, we Milan players have more motivation compared to others because we have underperformed this season.

“De Sciglio can play both on the right and left, it depends on the Coach’s choice.”

Inzaghi targets Cerci, Iturbe
30.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Pippo Inzaghi’s priority for Milan in the transfer window is apparently to sign at least one from Alessio Cerci and Juan Manuel Iturbe.

The 40-year-old former striker is all but confirmed as the Rossoneri’s new Coach and is believed to have already signalled his priorities for the club to target in the transfer window.

Understood to be favouring a formation switch to a 4-3-3, Inzaghi is believed to be after attacking wingers and has picked out Torino’s Cerci and Verona’s Iturbe as his first choices.

Due to the expected high price that will be placed on both, the Diavolo are reported by the Corriere dello Sport as likely to only make a move for one, unless funds can be raised through the increasingly suggested sale of Mario Balotelli.

Reports in Britain are echoing earlier suggestions this week from Italy that clubs in the Premier League are interested in Balotelli, particularly Arsenal, Liverpool and Chelsea.

Seedorf keen to resolve AC Milan issue
30.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf is reportedly as keen as Milan to resolve his contractual dispute, rather than be placed on gardening leave.

Lawyers for the 38-year-old are seen as in talks with Rossonero representatives to negotiate his severance package as Coach, so as to allow Pippo Inzaghi to officially come in as replacement.

Should the two parties fail to reach agreement on how to break Seedorf’s deal, which currently has two years left to run and €10m gross in wages to pay, one hypothesis that is open to Milan is to place the former midfielder on gardening leave, paying him his weekly salary until a resolution is reached.

However, the Corriere dello Sport report that Seedorf is as keen as Milan to agree to a clean break before he flies out to Brazil to take up punditry work with the BBC for the World Cup.

It is understood specifically that the Dutchman wants to be available should other clubs be interested in his services.

The Corriere dello Sport report that Milan ‘have suspicions’ that he may actually already have another destination wrapped up.

AC Milan offer EUR 3.8 mil. for Rami
30.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan have reportedly presented to Valencia an offer of €3.8m to sign Adil Rami on a permanent deal.

The Rossoneri picked up the France international from Los Che on an initial temporary basis midway through last season and are now seen as eager to sign him outright.

However, unwilling to pay the full €7m initially agreed as a purchase clause, the Diavolo are reported as having now presented to Valencia officials an offer of €3.8m for the 28-year-old.

The Gazzetta dello Sport indicate, though, that there is competition for Rami, coming from Manchester United and Liverpool.

Report: Sacchi back at AC Milan
28.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan will welcome back Arrigo Sacchi to the club as Head of Youth Development, reports suggest.

Sky Sport Italia claim that the former first team boss will be announced as the new chief of development at the Rossoneri as the San Siro outfit look to completely restructure.

Clarence Seedorf is set to be relieved of his duties as manager and replaced by Primavera Coach Pippo Inzaghi.

His job will then be taken by current Allievi man Cristian Brocchi, whilst Sacchi will be brought back from his current role as Technical Coordinator for the Italian national youth teams.

Inzaghi unveiled within two days
28.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan reportedly hope to officially unveil Pippo Inzaghi as their new Coach within the next 48 hours.

It is universally reported and understood that the 40-year-old will take over at San Siro from predecessor and former Rossoneri teammate Clarence Seedorf.

However, the Dutchman is still yet to be officially relieved of his position at the helm of the seven-time European champions, despite it being clear that he is on his way out.

With Seedorf still having two years left to run on his contract as Milan boss after taking over from Max Allegri in January, Ansa report that the club will use the next two days to iron out the details of his exit.

It is said that talks are in progress between the parties regarding a severance package, but should an agreement not be reached Seedorf will be formally sacked.

Ancelotti backs Inzaghi
28.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Real Madrid Coach Carlo Ancelotti has backed Pippo Inzaghi to do well as Milan’s new boss.

The former Rossoneri striker, who is set to be promoted from his position as the club’s Primavera Coach, will replace Clarance Seedorf in charge of the senior team.

Now, he has received the best wishes and backing of Ancelotti, who led the San Siro giants to two Champions League titles during his own spell in charge of the club.

Speaking to ANSA, the 54-year-old said Inzaghi’s lack of experience as a top level tactician would not be important and expressed his belief that the ex-forward has the characteristics needed to succeed.

“Inzaghi has fantastic enthusiasm,” Ancelotti is quoted as saying. “He already has some experience from working with the youth team.

“He has the characteristics needed, he knows the environment and if he becomes Milan Coach, I wish him good luck.

“No one has experience at the start of their career. You get it with time. The most important thing is to know the game.

“The Coach must not only keep an eye on the matches and tactics, but also prepare all training sessions.”

'Robinho will not come here'
28.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Flamengo have seemingly ruled themselves out of the running to sign Milan forward Robinho this summer.

The Brazilian is strongly expected to leave San Siro this summer and has been linked with a return to his homeland and possible interest from Major League Soccer in the US.

Despite reports in the Brazilian media recently suggesting that Flamengo would be one of the interested parties to come in for the 30-year-old, their Vice-President has now briefly hinted otherwise.

“Most likely, Robinho will not come to Flamengo,” Wallim Vasconcellos has told today.

“That’s all I can say for now.”

Gattuso: 'AC Milan must not mislead fans'
28.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Gennaro Gattuso has called on Milan to not go wrong in the transfer window and to not lie to fans about season objectives.

The Rossoneri are due to change Coach for a second time in six months, with Pippo Inzaghi expected to be confirmed in place of Clarence Seedorf imminently, and are facing a period of rebuilding after a difficult 2013-14 saw them fail to qualify for Europe for the first time since 1997-98.

For one of Seedorf and Inzaghi’s former teammates, what must be done over the summer is clear.

“For next year we cannot make any wrong purchases, and above all we must not lie to the fans,” Gattuso has commented to Milan Channel today.

“We cannot say that we will win the League because we are Milan, the important thing is to have a line and to follow it.

“The history of the club teaches us - Milan-Cavese in Serie B with a full stadium this is a demonstration of the love of the supporters, they just want clarity.

“Do not complain about Berlusconi, we have lifted many trophies, now we just need to be able to recover.”

Paolo Maldini has been linked with a return to the club in a directorial capacity, but a reputed poor relationship with Adriano Galliani is seen as one thing preventing this.

“Paolo can give something to this club, for what he was and for what he left the dressing room.

“If there was a chance for him to reconcile with Adriano Galliani face to face, then that would be great.

“If they were to talk then I think that everything would be alright within a few minutes.”

Gattuso has recently stepped into coaching, but after a short spell with Palermo, has indicated he may return to working abroad in future.

“It is difficult for me to train in Italy, the possibilities abroad are more convincing. Being a Coach is like going to school, the more you are on the field, the more experience you gain.

“Nowadays I miss going on the pitch and talking with the guys. I do not miss playing football because I know that I gave everything.”

AC Milan choose Inzaghi as Coach
28.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan are expected to confirm Pippo Inzaghi as their new Coach, as he meets with Silvio Berlusconi and Adriano Galliani.

Clarence Seedorf was only brought in at the end of January in place of Max Allegri, but difficulties on the pitch followed by a breakdown in relations with Galliani had left the Dutchman as strongly expected to have to negotiate an exit from his June 2016 contract this summer.

In the Rossoneri’s subsequent search for a believed replacement, recent reports had strongly linked them with interest in Sevilla’s Unai Emery, but that track appeared to go cold with the Spaniard’s hints that he will renew with the Andalucians this week.

On from this situation, President Berlusconi and Vice-President Galliani held a three-hour summit at the former’s Villa San Martino in Arcore on Monday night, where they were joined by primavera Coach Pippo Inzaghi.

The retired striker had been listed as one of the duo’s other options to come in this summer to take over the senior squad and talks late into last night were seen as ratifying an agreement to that effect.

No official statement has been released, but it is generally accepted that Milan have chosen to promote Inzaghi.

Speculation is split on whether the club will confirm the decision until they have negotiated Seedorf’s exit from his contract, or if they will instead sit on the 38-year-old’s deal out of an unwillingness to pay him the full €5m in remaining wages he would be owed otherwise.

Meanwhile, Inzaghi’s appointment will reportedly be matched by Mauro Tassotti’s reconfirmation in his long-standing role as assistant Coach, whilst Cristian Brocchi will take over Inzaghi’s work with the primavera team.

AC Milan race for Emery offer
26.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan are reportedly planning a ‘race against time’ to convince Unai Emery to join them, before he signs a new contract with Sevilla.

The tactician has emerged in recent days as a surprise candidate to replace Clarence Seedorf at San Siro, if the 38-year-old is to be removed from the bench in the coming weeks.

However, with Sevilla insisting that Emery has agreed to a new contract with them and will sign it on Tuesday, reports in Italy are building that Silvio Berlusconi and Adriano Galliani are preparing a counter-offer.

Reports are that Berlusconi yesterday met with Galliani to discuss the matter and that Galliani has remained in constant contact with Ernesto Bronzetti, who is expected to act as intermediary with the Spanish.

The Gazzetta dello Sport lead suggestions that the Rossoneri are planning to reach Emery with a proposal before his otherwise anticipated renewal with the Europa League winners is signed.

The pink paper report that Sevilla are offering Emery a €300,000 pay-rise to €1.8m-a-year, to extend his contract beyond its current expiry at the end of June.

Milan are speculated as preparing to choose between running with Emery and sticking with Seedorf.

Baresi: No Europe no drama
26.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan legend Franco Baresi says his former side’s failure to qualify for the Europa League is far from a disaster.

The Rossoneri, despite an improved run of form in the closing weeks of the season, were only able to finish eighth in the final Serie A table.

The San Siro giants’ failure to secure continental qualification is one of the reasons for Coach Clarence Seedorf’s seemingly inevitable departure, but speaking to Forza Milan magazine the defensive icon believes it is no time for panic at the club.

“I happened to play in the UEFA Cup at times during my career, just as on others I didn’t play in Europe at all,” Baresi said.

“Obviously you always want to be in the Champions League, especially a club like Milan.

“But there are some seasons where this is not possible, it’s a shame but it’s no big drama. Instead, they should make sure they learn where they’ve gone wrong and start again next time.”

Castro: Emery staying
26.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Sevilla President Jose Castro says Coach Unai Emery is staying with the Andalusians and will sign a new contract on Tuesday.

Under the Basque tactician’s guidance, the Rojiblancos won the Europa League and finished fifth in La Liga this season.

His exploits attracted the attention of Milan, who seem set to sack current Coach Clarence Seedorf, and Emery has been widely reported as the club’s number one choice to replace him.

However, speaking to Spanish media this afternoon, the Sevilla chief revealed that the 42-year-old will commit his immediate future to his current club in the next few days.

“During the last few days there has been a lot of talk about the interest of a certain club for our Coach, Unai Emery,” Castro told reporters.

“Clearly, the good work of the team has not passed unnoticed. But on Tuesday the Coach will sign a renewal. I am being clear and so is he.

“There really is no reason to think that things won’t proceed how we want them to. The contract he will sign will keep him with us for at least another season, in which we hope to consolidate and improve.”

AC Milan congratulate Ancelotti
26.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan have placed on record their congratulations to former Coach Carlo Ancelotti after he won a third Champions League as a Coach.

The Italian tactician secured Europe’s premier club competition twice while in charge of the Rossoneri, winning finals against Juventus and Liverpool respectively.

Last night’s victory for his current side Real Madrid against Atletico Madrid means the former Chelsea and PSG boss has now drawn level with Bob Paisley in having won three European Cups. They are the only two men to have achieved the feat.

“Congratulations to Mr Ancelotti for his third Champions League,” Milan said on their official Instagram account.

“This is after two victories as a Coach and two as a player with Milan!”

AC Milan to discuss Rami next week
26.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan’s scheduled meeting with Valencia yesterday did not happen, but the two clubs will discuss Adil Rami’s future soon.

The central defender was on loan at the Rossoneri for the second part of last season, and impressed during their surge after Christmas.

As such, the San Siro outfit are keen to sign the France international on a permanent basis this summer.

Adriano Galliani was meant to meet with the directors at Los Che on Saturday, but they weren’t present at the Champions League final in Lisbon.

As such, talks are set to take place at some point next week, according to respected Sky journalist Gianluca Di Marzio.

Jorge Jesus meets with Galliani?
26.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Benfica boss Jorge Jesus is the latest name to be linked with Milan, as Clarence Seedorf’s future looks increasingly untenable.

The 59-year-old has been at Estadio da Luz for five years now, guiding the Lisbon club to two Primiera Liga titles, one Taca de Portugal and three Taca de Liga wins.

But Corriere dello Sport claim that he could be tempted to make the switch to San Siro after speaking with Adriano Galliani.

The Milan director is thought to have met Jorge in the Portuguese capital on Saturday evening before the Champions League final.

This latest rumours once again reinforces the thought that Seedorf will make way over the summer after less than half a season in charge.

Kaka in more Orlando links
26.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Reports in Spain this evening are once again linking Kaka with a move to MLS outfit Orlando City.

The Milan playmaker has been heavily linked with a switch to the United States for months now, with the American club’s owner admitting that he would be interested in signing the Brazilian.

And Madrid-based paper AS claim that a clause in Kaka’s contract states that he can leave one year earlier than intended, with the Rossoneri not playing in the Champions League.

The paper writes that the trequartista can depart for the MLS if the club fail to qualify for Europe – something they have done this season.

As such, the former Real Madrid man could be tempted to the Florida team over the summer.

The sports daily does concede however, that Kaka is ’99 per cent likely’ to honour his Milan contract, and only leave in the summer of 2015.

Chelsea and PSG want Balotelli
26.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Some of Europe’s biggest clubs will make a move for Mario Balotelli after the World Cup, according to one report.

Corriere della Sera have claimed this Saturday that Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain are both keen on signing the Milan striker.

The Italy international has been in relatively decent form in 2013-14, but came in for some criticism from President Silvio Berlsuconi earlier this month, who insisted that he needed to ‘learn how to score’.

As such, the Premier League and Ligue 1 sides believe they have a good chance of tempting the youngster away from San Siro.

The paper writes that the Rossoneri patron could be open to selling the controversial forward for the right price.

Cafu: Keep Clarence!
26.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Cafu thinks it would be disrespectful of his former club Milan if they were to decide to sack Coach Clarence Seedorf.

The Dutchman has only been in charge at San Siro since January but came under increasing pressure during the course of the final few months of the season.

However, his results represented an overall improvement on those obtained by predecessor Max Allegri, and Cafu believes his former Rossoneri teammate should be given more time to implement his ideas.

“Let’s hope the club understand his ideas and that they allow him to do his job,” Cafu said to Sky Sport. “He has different ideas, but he brought in some changes and that is not easy to do during the season.

“They should give him one or two full seasons before judging him.

“If they get rid of him now it would be disrespectful. If they don’t keep him and don’t get some good players how are they going to have a competitive team?”

De Jong happy with Seedorf
24.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan’s Nigel De Jong says he is happy with current Coach Clarence Seedorf, despite the tactician’s seemingly inevitable departure from San Siro.

The Dutchman took over the Rossoneri in January and oversaw an overall improvement in the team’s form, but it was not enough to secure Europa League qualification.

Media speculation has strongly linked Sevilla Coach Unai Emery with the post but, speaking to Dutch media, Seedorf’s compatriot De Jong backed the current boss and praised his winning mentality.

“From a personal point of view I am happy,” De Jong told Algemeen Dagblad. “I have played a lot of matches and I have also started scoring goals.

“Seedorf? He became our Coach during the course of the season, we know each other well and we are from similar backgrounds

“We have the same winning mentality, neither of us will ever lose our identity.”

Berlusconi: Atletico the model
24.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan CEO Barbara Berlusconi says Atletico Madrid are an example to which the Rossoneri can aspire.

Diego Simeone’s Rojiblancos will tonight contest the final of the Champions League, having already won the La Liga title with scant resources in comparison to Barcelona and Real Madrid.

Speaking to Sky Sport in Lisbon ahead of the match, Berlusconi acknowledged her side’s disappointing season and said the club were obliged to get to work as soon as possible to rectify the situation.

“Atletico have obtained great results with competitively very low expenditures,” she said.

“We have had a very disappointing season and we must get to work straight away in order to get back into the Champions League as soon as possible. The target is to be back in time for 2015-16.

“Atletico Madrid are an example of what can be achieved. They have shown that with good planning you can get important results, even against clubs with greater resources.”

'Race against time' for Emery
24.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

The Italian Press are reporting this morning that Milan face a race against time to appoint Unai Emery as their new Coach.

The Spaniard led current club Sevilla to the Europa League title this season, as well as a fifth place La Liga finish.

His exploits this term attracted the attention of the Rossoneri and in recent days he has become the clear favourite to replace Clarence Seedorf, who remains in his position but is expected to be sacked.

However, Gazzetta Dello Sport now say that Milan will have to have made an official offer to the Basque tactician by Tuesday at the latest if they hope to prise their target away from the Andalusian club.

It is said that Emery already has an official offer from Sevilla on the table regarding an extension. However, he is still waiting to receive the same from Milan.

The report also states that Milan President Silvio Berlusconi has arranged a meeting with joint CEOs Barbara Berlusconi and Adriano Galliani to discuss the coaching position in more detail, but that it is not scheduled to take place until next weekend – four days after the supposed Tuesday deadline.

Milan’s first approaches to the Coach came before Sevilla’s Europa League final with Benfica, but the 42-year-old did not want to be distracted from the upcoming tie.

The links and speculation have grown stronger over the last week and Emery is said to be interested in moving to San Siro, but whether the issue of time can be resolved remains to be seen.

El Shaarawy: My intention is to stay
24.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Stephan El Shaarawy has reflected on his difficult season, but insists that he wants to stay at Milan.

The Italian youngster only played six times in the League last term following a serious of foot injuries that required surgery.

But following reports that the Rossoneri could cut their losses and sell the striker, he has claimed that he wants to remain with the San Siro outfit.

“I didn’t play many games which was a shame,” he told reporters at a Samsung event in the city today.

“When the stress fracture reappeared it was a time of great distress for me, personally.

“But my intention now is to stay with Milan and return to the best of my ability.

“The season we had wasn’t the best. We improved towards the end, but we were too far back to challenge.”

AC Milan ready EUR 4 mil. Rami bid
24.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan are expected to today meet with Valencia officials to begin negotiations for Adil Rami at a reduced price.

The Rossoneri have been reported in recent weeks as willing to make permanent the 28-year-old’s switch from Mestalla, but only at a reduced rate of €3.5m, half the original €7m agreed as a purchase fee.

On from this scenario, Gianluca Di Marzio’s website is reporting that Adriano Galliani will meet with Valencia officials between today and tomorrow, ahead of arriving in Lisbon to take in the Champions League Final.

It is reported that Milan may in fact get their way in negotiations, with it believed that an offer of €4m would be enough to successfully conclude talks.

Kaka and Robinho on Orlando radar
22.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Ricky Kaka’s links to Orlando City have re-emerged and he could bring Milan teammate Robinho with him.

Earlier this year Orlando City made their interest in Kaka abundantly clear, retweeting a story about the Brazilian being interested in an MLS move in future.

“We’re ready when you are, Ricky!” was the message sent out in public.

According to renewed reports coming out of America, Kaka isn’t the only Rossoneri player who has caught their attention.

Robinho could also be heading for Major League Soccer at Orlando City, who will join the MLS in March 2015.

Kaka is good friends with Orlando’s Brazilian majority owner Flavio Augusto da Silva.

It was confirmed by Milan that there is a clause in Kaka’s contract allowing him to walk away this summer if they failed to qualify for the Champions League.

The Rossoneri have in fact missed out on Europe altogether, finishing eighth in Serie A, which could prompt Kaka and Robinho to leave.

However, so far Kaka has stated in public he is likely to remain at San Siro for another season.

Bonera - Amelia brawl on AC Milan bus?
22.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

There are extraordinary reports of a brawl between Milan teammates Daniele Bonera and Marco Amelia on the team bus.

According to La Repubblica and La Gazzetta dello Sport, the pair got into a fist-fight while on the bus travelling back from the inauguration of Casa Milan, the club’s new headquarters, on Monday evening.

It is claimed the two teammates brawled in the aisle of the bus while the other players tried to separate them.

The reports suggest there was already bad blood between them, which sparked into a full-blown fight after Amelia waited to sign autographs for fans.

Goalkeeper Amelia has already announced he will be leaving Milan this summer as a free agent, as he was not offered a contract renewal.

This story emerges a day after ex-Milan full-back Gianluca Zambrotta revealed in his autobiography that Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Massimiliano Allegri had a blazing row in the locker room that almost descended into a fist-fight.

Constant placed in Santon talks
22.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan are reportedly interested in Newcastle United’s Davide Santon and are willing to offer Kevin Constant in part exchange.

The Rossoneri were linked with the former Inter full-back yesterday by British outlet Talksport, and the Gazzetta dello Sport have followed up on this with further detail.

The pink paper suggests that the club’s interest is genuine, but that they are keen to negotiate down a perceived €8m asking price.

To that end, it is believed that Adriano Galliani and company are willing to offer Kevin Constant as a makeweight in the deal.

However, the Gazzetta also suggest that negotiations with Newcastle for the 23-year-old will only develop further once Milan have resolved who will be Coach next season.

Essien on AC Milan and Ghana
22.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Michael Essien has reflected on settling in at Milan and on his country Ghana’s hopes at this year’s World Cup.

The midfielder is with his national team ahead of preparations for the summer tournament in Brazil, following a first six months in Italy with the Rossoneri.

“Milan is good, and I am settling in nicely, which is important,” Essien has told FIFA’s official website this week.

“Everyone is friendly at the club and [they] are looking after me well, so I cannot complain.

“We are all working as a team to bring the club to where it belongs, and with time, I have no doubt the glory days will be back.

“I am lucky as well as proud to have and to still be playing for the best clubs in the world. All in all, I have not done badly and long may it continue.”

The former Chelsea midfielder, who has previously taken a break from the international scene due to injury issues, was asked of his future in representing Ghana.

“If I suffer no further big injuries, continue to play well and continue to be selected for the Black Stars, then who knows ...

“I may be at another World Cup. After [Brazil] it will be business as usual - back to playing club football and if selected for the national team, I will carry on.

“There are African Cup qualifiers and the 2015 tournament in January, so that will be the next objective.”

The 31-year-old considered the Black Stars’ hopes heading out to South America, where they will face Germany, Portugal and United States in Group G.

“The squad for this tournament is the best Ghana has to offer, and the quality in depth is extremely good, especially in midfield.

“We have multiple options in most positions which is always a plus for any side.

“Our initial aim will be to get out of the group into the second round, and then take it from there game by game.

“Who knows? We are certainly capable of going one better and making it to the semi-finals or even finals.

“Anything can happen, but we are realistic enough to know we cannot aim that high from the start.

“Get the first objective of making the second round out of the way, and we will see how far we can go. It will be a journey without doubt, one we are looking forward to.”

Napoli considering Pazzini?
22.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

The Corriere dello Sport suggest that Napoli’s search for a second striker may lead them to Milan’s Giampaolo Pazzini.

The Vesuviani’s Coach Rafa Benitez is reported this week as having requested that the club bring in a ‘vice-Higuain’ to strengthen the front-line options with.

Initial reports indicated that Guangzhou Evergrande’s Brazilian Elkeson and Fulham’s Konstantinos Mitroglou topped the list of possible recruitments, whilst former Milan man Willy Aubameyang and the more expensive Jackson Martinez have since also been named.

However, the Corriere dello Sport today have it that Milan’s Pazzini may be a credible option that the club are considering making a move for.

Pazzini managed two League goals during 2013-14, from 18 appearances.

Inzaghi to meet with Galliani
22.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Pippo Inzaghi is seen as due to meet with Adriano Galliani, when it is speculated the possibility of coaching Milan will be discussed.

The Rossoneri are continually reported as looking for a potential replacement for Clarence Seedorf this summer, with current Primavera Coach Inzaghi listed as in the running alongside the likes of Roberto Donadoni and Luciano Spalletti.

The Corriere dello Sport are continuing to suggest today that the Diavolo are also holding out hope of a return for Carlo Ancelotti, should he be unable to win the Champions League with Real Madrid and find himself out of that job.

That aside, though, the Rome based publication say that soon a meeting between Inzaghi and Galliani will take place.

It is seen that one topic of conversation will be the prospect of the retired striker potentially stepping into the San Siro hotseat.

However, also on the table will apparently be a proposal from Inzaghi to better align the senior team with the Primavera and Berretti (Under-19) teams.

AC Milan confirm Agazzi capture
22.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan have confirmed that they have signed former Cagliari goalkeeper Michael Agazzi on a three-year contract.

The 29-year-old was heavily reported in January as having reached agreement to join the Rossoneri on a Bosman deal this summer, and the club have now confirmed his capture.

“Milan announce that it has acquired Michael Agazzi, who has signed a contract until June 30,2017,” Milan’s brief statement released on Thursday reads.

Agazzi’s arrival comes the day after Christian Abbiati was confirmed as having agreed to a new one-year extension with the Rossoneri.

During last season, Agazzi was frozen out at Cagliari as it became clear he would not be renewing and he spent the final six months of the season at Chievo.

Montolivo and Immobile to wed
22.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Riccardo Montolivo and Ciro Immobile take advantage of a break in World Cup preparations to get married.

The Milan midfielder and Torino striker are both holding their wedding ceremonies tomorrow, during a brief pause in the training sessions.

Montolivo will wed Cristina De Pin in Varese with the reception on Lago Maggiore.

Immobile is set to marry Jessica Melena in Chieti. They had been set to marry last year, but the ceremony was postponed by his call-up for the European Under-21 Championships.

Zambrotta: 'Ibrahimovic - Allegri fight!'
21.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Gianluca Zambrotta reveals Massimiliano Allegri and Zlatan Ibrahimovic “almost got into a fist-fight” at Milan.

The 2006 World Cup winner gave several interviews promoting his new autobiography, ‘Una vita da terzino’ – ‘Life as a fullback.’

Zambrotta had very harsh words for ex-Milan Coach Allegri during the presentation and blamed him for their current problems.

“I didn’t have problems with Allegri the first year, but the second we lost the Scudetto due to mismanagement of the locker room.

“You need to have all the players working in your direction to win, but instead in a decisive game he clearly said that even if he only had 14 players, it’d make no difference. So what about all the others? That’s when we lost the Scudetto.

“I looked Ibra in the face to ask, what is this man saying? Another time after losing 3-0 to Arsenal, Allegri said: ‘Well done lads, it doesn’t matter.’ That was not a great move. Ibra was furious and they almost got into a fist-fight in the locker room.”

Zambrotta was also asked about his Italy experience and advice for the upcoming World Cup squad.

“I talk about my three World Cups and three European Championships. Obviously the principle focus is on the 2006 tournament,” he told TuttoMercatoWeb.

“All I can do now is wish the lads and Coach Cesare Prandelli all the best. It won’t be easy, but Italy have the quality to finish in the top eight. The World Cup is always a special competition, very different from the others.

“Even the opponents who on paper might seem weaker can still cause you trouble. Obviously, in Italy’s group on paper England seem to be the most important challengers.

“Ignazio Abate and Mattia De Sciglio are promising players who are very hungry for success, so I hope they can win an important trophy with Italy the same way I did.”

AC Milan to talk Rami this week
21.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

A representative for Milan is expected to meet with Valencia officials on Friday to discuss the future of defender Adil Rami.

The defender’s initial six-month loan spell with the Rossoneri is seen as having impressed the club enough to try to sign him on a permanent basis this summer.

However, speculation is that they are reluctant to pay the €7m purchase fee previously agreed with his parent club and are in fact angling for a 50 per cent reduction, tabling a €3.5m offer.

Milan intermediary and FIFA agent Ernesto Bronzetti is reported by the Gazzetta dello Sport as due to meet with officials from Los Che on Friday to discuss these terms for the 28-year-old.

Abbiati renews to 2015
21.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan have confirmed that Christian Abbiati has signed a new one year contract extension with the club.

The 36-year-old was out of contract this summer but has now committed to a new deal to tie him to the Rossoneri until June 2015.

Milan have confirmed the news through a brief statement released on Twitter: “Christian Abbiati has extended his contract until June 30, 2015.”

Speculated recently was that the veteran was on his way out this summer, amid the club’s continued links to Michael Agazzi and Federico Marchetti.

Whilst having also commented recently that he himself was unsure of his future at San Siro, Abbiati will now prolong his stay with the Diavolo.

The goalkeeper has been on the club’s books since 1998, with loan spells in between at Juventus, Torino and Atletico Madrid.

Balotelli racially abused at Coverciano
21.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

A small group of young men reportedly shouted racist abuse towards Mario Balotelli during today’s pre-World Cup training with Italy.

The Azzurri are at the Italian Football Federation’s headquarters in Coverciano for a first week of on-field preparations ahead of this summer’s tournament in Brazil.

Reports in Italy are that an unsavoury incident occurred during this morning's session, when a group of young men outside the training camp shouted racist abuse towards Balotelli.

The Milan man was reported as initially upset at the incident, before dismissing it and is quoted as telling teammates: “Unbelievable. Only in Rome and Florence do these things happen.”

Police are reported to have intervened in the situation.

Robinho to MLS, Mexes to stay?
21.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

The Gazzetta dello Sport believe that Robinho could be heading out to the MLS, but that Philippe Mexes may remain with Milan.

Speculation around the duo in recent months has been that both players would be leaving the Rossoneri this summer as part of the club’s transfer strategy.

On from his agent commenting that not only former side Santos were a possible destination, reports today are that Robinho has an option to move to the MLS, with Orlando City.

The franchise have previously been linked the Brazilian’s teammate Ricky Kaka, although the former Ballon d’Or winner appears less likely to leave San Siro this summer.

The Gazzetta dello Sport continue their report with a look at defender Mexes’ future.

The Frenchman was believed on his way out for, among other things, an expensive salary set at €4m, but the pink paper indicate that Adriano Galliani has not placed him among the first list of players to leave, and a reconfirmation of his place in the club’s plans is still possible.

Inzaghi: 'AC Milan are the priority'
21.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Pippo Inzaghi hinted he could replace Clarence Seedorf. “I will soon meet with Milan and decide on my future. They are the priority.”

While Seedorf’s future remains in serious doubt just five months after replacing Massimiliano Allegri, Inzaghi has impressed as Coach of the Rossoneri Primavera youth team.

“I am happy with my path, Milan care about me and we’ll see what the future holds,” he told Sky Sport Italia.

“I know that everyone here respects me and I am also aware I have it all to prove, just as I did in my playing days.

“It’s complicated being a Coach, but if you do it with passion then you get good results.”

Inzaghi had been approached by Sassuolo in January, but Milan refused to release him, while he was also a strong option to take over when Allegri was sacked.

“I’ve never thought about what comes tomorrow, as I live day by day. I have another two years on my contract, I will soon meet with Milan and decide on my future. I am relaxed. I’ve had some great times with the Primavera side, so we’ll see.

“Adriano Galliani doesn’t want to send me away, so it’s unlikely I’d join another club. Milan are the priority, as they have always given me everything and I’d like to meet up to understand their projects.

“Seedorf? I think he did a good job and I wish him all the best.”

Inzaghi’s brother Simone is Coach of the Lazio Primavera youth side and has been tipped as a potential successor to Edy Reja on the main Aquile bench.

“Simo is doing really well and I hope he can become Lazio Coach, as he’s got what it takes. It’ll be fun to meet up again on the touchline, as we had a lot of joy as players and hope to continue that in our management careers too.”

El Shaarawy awaits AC Milan nod
21.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Stephan El Shaarawy’s agent said he’d like to stay at Milan, “but we’ll have to wait and see what the club decides.”

The Little Pharaoh struggled for playing time this season with a series of injuries, including surgery on a fracture in December.

“He always put in the performances when fit and his last two appearances showed he has found his form after a long lay-off,” said agent and brother Manuel El Shaarawy.

“Will his future be at Milan? We’ll have to wait and see what the club decides on the market. Stephan is certainly an important player, but there are many changes going on, starting from the issue of the Coach.

“He has always been a Milan fan, so the intention is to stay, but we need to evaluate all the situations. We have to see what Milan decides.”

El Shaarawy had been called up for pre-World Cup fitness tests, but didn’t make the 30-man provisional squad.

“He was upset,” confirmed Manuel. “He always had hope, but unfortunately couldn’t play consistently. If he had a few more games under his belt, then he could’ve been in the 30 and once in training show Cesare Prandelli what he can do.

“The only reason he wasn’t called up is that he hadn’t played for several months. It was purely a fitness issue. If he had made his comeback a month earlier, he certainly would’ve challenged for a place at the World Cup.”

Seedorf: 'End of the month decision'
19.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf said his Milan situation “will be clear by the end of the month” after a “dignified” campaign.

For six minutes this evening, the Rossoneri were in the Europa League, but a 2-1 win over Sassuolo was not enough and Parma took sixth place.

“From the start that wasn’t the objective we had in mind. The lads did really well to emerge from a very difficult situation, as the number of points we earned in the second half of the season was dignified,” the Coach told Sky Sport Italia.

Naturally, Seedorf was asked about his position at Milan and reports he’ll be fired.

“I have no intention of talking to the club via the media. I’ve said that for months and today changes nothing in that regard.

“Now I will finish all the interviews, then go to eat some nice sushi, relax tomorrow, play some tennis and then we’ll try to prepare what we need to prepare with the club.”

Assistant manager Mauro Tassotti said it may well have been his last game at Milan, so there is an air of revolution.

“We’ll know more about that over the next few days. Before the end of the month we’ll discuss things and work out the strategy.

“I never felt that as a player I was finished, as I always wanted to improve, learn from other players and work on my own weaknesses. I think it’s the same for a Coach. I am a very curious person, I like challenges and I don’t think the learning process will ever end.

“It was a new experience being on the other side of the locker room, but we managed to form a cohesive group and that was very positive.”

There are consistent rumours of problems within the Rossoneri squad and Seedorf explains that may well be true, but no more than anywhere else.

“I’ve never played in a team where every player was happy, but that doesn’t mean the squad isn’t cohesive. I remember at Real Madrid there were at least five who were unhappy, but if the rest are united then they will come back into the group.”

Tassotti to Real Madrid?
19.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adriano Galliani hinted Milan assistant manager Mauro Tassotti will reunite with Carlo Ancelotti at Real Madrid.

The CEO spoke to Sky Sport Italia ahead of tonight’s game with Sassuolo, which Tassotti said could well be his last at the club.

“Assistant managers form pairs with Coaches and he could form a pair with another Coach who has passed through Milan. We’ll see, anyway, it’s not certain this will be his last game.”

Tassotti was a Milan player and has been assistant manager since 2001 to Ancelotti, Leonardo, Massimiliano Allegri and now Clarence Seedorf.

“There are many reasons to leave. Stories begin and at times they don’t end. Let’s wait and see what happens,” said Tassotti this evening.

Of those tacticians, the only one who Tassotti would likely leave Milan for is Ancelotti, as they worked together for eight years at San Siro.

Ancelotti’s current assistant manager, Zinedine Zidane, is leaving Real Madrid this summer, so there is a job opening.

Another option would be following Allegri to his next job, but it's not clear where that will be.

Tassotti: 'Reasons to leave AC Milan'
19.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan assistant manager Mauro Tassotti confessed tonight could be his last game. “There are many reasons to leave.”

He was a star defender in the Grande Milan, then from 2001 assistant manager to Carlo Ancelotti, Leonardo, Massimiliano Allegri and now Clarence Seedorf.

“There is this possibility that I could go,” Tassotti told Sky Sport Italia ahead of tonight’s match with Sassuolo.

“There are many reasons to leave. Stories begin and at times they don’t end. Let’s wait and see what happens.”

Tassotti had been offered the Lazio job last year, but opted against taking it, though it could now be time to spread his wings.

Milan still have a slim chance of qualifying for Europe, but would need to beat Sassuolo, hope Torino lose and that Parma fail to win.

“It doesn’t just depend on us, so we must do our bit and try to win,” Tassotti told Milan Channel.

“In football there have always been surprises, so let’s hope for one tonight. We will also try to win for the fans.

“Even if there isn’t much at stake, we are playing for our dignity, which seems to be enough for me.”

Berlusconi: 'Decision after May 25'
19.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

President Silvio Berlusconi said he will “decide what is best for Milan” after May 25, as “it could be the start of a new era.”

The patron chose Clarence Seedorf to replace Massimiliano Allegri in January, but has reportedly grown disillusioned with the Coach.

Constantly dodging questions on whether the Dutchman would remain on the bench, Berlusconi spoke to Radio Lombardia this morning.

“We will wait for the final game and then, after May 25 I will bring together the Board of Directors. As we have always done in the previous seasons, all together we’ll decide what is best for Milan going into next year.

“Unfortunately, it will be a campaign dedicated solely to Serie A and the Coppa Italia. This will weigh heavily on us, but it could be the start of a new era.

“We are already thinking about this new era because we want to return, as we were for 30 years, to being protagonists in the world of football and not just in Italy.”

Juventus consider Abate swoop
19.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Juventus could swoop for Milan right-back Ignazio Abate if he doesn’t renew his contract.

The 27-year-old has been at San Siro for five years, but his current deal expires in June 2015.

If he doesn’t reach an agreement to renew, then the Rossoneri will sell in order to avoid losing him as a free agent.

According to Tuttosport, Juventus are keeping a close eye on the situation and could make an offer for Abate.

He would be reunited with another former Milan man, Andrea Pirlo.

Abate managed only 19 Serie A appearances this season, scoring one goal, and is a versatile figure who can play right-back, right wing or the right side of midfield.

Serie A: AC Milan 2:1 Sassuolo - match report
19.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Scorers: Muntari 2 (M), De Jong 27 (M), Zaza pen 90 (S)

Milan beat Sassuolo 2-1 in a fiery encounter with three red cards, but it’s not enough for Europe.

This could well be Clarence Seedorf’s final match as Coach, just five months after a 4-3 defeat to Sassuolo proved the end for Massimiliano Allegri. They still had a very slim chance of qualifying for the Europa League, but needed a victory with both Torino and Parma failing to win.

Sassuolo secured their Serie A safety last week and had won their last three away games, so were brimming with confidence. Robinho, Daniele Bonera, Riccardo Saponara and Valter Birsa missed out, but 15-year-old Hachim Mastour was on the bench for the first time. Mario Balotelli was rested after his shock at seeing his house burgled this week. The Neroverdi were without Reto Ziegler, Sergio Floccari, Francesco Acerbi, Paolo Bianco, Thomas Manfredini and Marius Alexe.

It took under two minutes for the hosts to break the deadlock, as Sulley Muntari’s left-foot snapshot thumped the inside of the near post to ricochet past a helpless goalkeeper.

Lorenzo Ariaudo blasted over from a free kick and Alberto Pomini got down to beat away Giampaolo Pazzini’s effort, then did the same on a Ricky Kaka curler that was heading for the bottom corner.

Muntari threatened a second, scuffing just wide, while Pazzini’s goal was ruled offside.

The Rossoneri did double their tally with a Nigel De Jong free kick taking a decisive touch off Simone Zaza in the wall.

Chibsah timed his sliding tackle perfectly to stop Kaka pulling the trigger on a Taarabt assist, while Pomini needed his wits about him to prevent substitute Stephan El Shaarawy from scoring.

Milan went down to 10 men, as Philippe Mexes received a second yellow card for clattering into Domenico Berardi.

Pazzini went on a solo counter-attack and got past Ariaudo, but Pomini palmed it round the base of the near post.

Paolo Cannavaro received a straight red card for a shocking challenge on El Shaarawy in the middle of the park.

Soon after, Milan went down to nine men, as Mattia De Sciglio was sent off for his penalty challenge. Simone Zaza’s stuttering run-up sent Abbiati the wrong way.

Milan: Abbiati; De Sciglio, Rami, Mexes, Constant (Zaccardo 63); Montolivo, De Jong, Muntari (El Shaarawy 58); Taarabt, Pazzini, Kaka (Balotelli 73)

Sassuolo: Pomini; Mendes (Terranova 78), Cannavaro, Ariaudo, Longhi; Chibsah (Masucci 73), Magnanelli, Missiroli (Biondini 46); Berardi, Zaza, Sansone

Ref: Valeri

Sent off: Mexes 68 (M), Cannavaro 86 (S), De Sciglio 89 (M)

Mastour gets AC Milan call-up
17.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

As expected, 15-year-old Hachim Mastour receives his first call-up for Milan against Sassuolo.

It kicks off at San Siro on Sunday at 19.45 UK time (18.45 GMT).

Mastour was only promoted from the Primavera youth team to the senior squad this week and after a couple of training sessions already impressed.

He is included in Clarence Seedorf’s side for the final Serie A game of the season against Sassuolo and is expected to receive his debut as a substitute.

Mastour will wear the Number 98 jersey.

Milan squad for Sassuolo: Abbiati, Amelia, Coppola, Abate, Constant, De Sciglio, Mexes, Rami, Zaccardo, Zapata, Emanuelson, Essien, De Jong, Honda, Kaka, Montolivo, Muntari, Poli, Taarabt, Balotelli, El Shaarawy, Mastour, Pazzini, Petagna.

Seedorf: 'I made mistakes'
17.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf had good news for Stephan El Shaarawy and confessed to regrets in his spell as Milan Coach.

Tomorrow night’s game with Sassuolo could well be his last on the bench.

“Will El Shaarawy start? We could certainly think about it,” said Seedorf in his Press conference.

“Stephan is coming off a difficult few months, but did very well in the recovery process. He is a fundamental player for me and an important one for the future of Milan.

“He’s disappointed not to be in the World Cup squad, as is Andrea Poli, but I hope they can convert all that into motivation with the Rossoneri.”

There has also been a great deal of speculation over Mario Balotelli and Ricky Kaka.

“Is Balotelli the symbol of Milan? It’s a bit early to say that. I don’t know whether or not Kaka will stay, as we have to wait and see what he’s decided.”

President Silvio Berlusconi left the door open for a potential agreement to keep Seedorf, who shrugged off yet more questions on his future.

“I have already said I will not comment on the President’s words or communicate with the club via the media.

“My future? I have another two years on my contract. That seems to be my future. I don’t have to say anything else, as I’ve been in football for 23 years and read so many made-up stories.

“I repeat what I’ve said for weeks: my conscience is clear. I love Italy, but some ways of communicating are not right. I think that over four months you in the media went overboard with me and with Italian football in general.

“I have really enjoyed this season, learned a great deal with the highs and lows of this sport. Other than results there is also the daily training and rapport with players and staff.

“I am proud to have seen a team that wanted to react, bringing out its battling spirit. I think we earned a dignified number of points in the second half of the season and the credit goes to a squad that gave its all.

“Mistakes are what allow you to mature and improve. I know what errors I made and I’ve tried to learn from them.”
However, Seedorf admits there is one game that sticks in his craw.

“I’d like to replay the Champions League home tie with Atletico Madrid. Having said that, the progress of Atleti in the Liga and Europe shows how strong they really are.”

Diego Simeone’s side could win the Liga title today, while they face Real Madrid in the Champions League Final next week.

Seedorf: 'I am transparent'
17.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf said his philosophy is only just coming through at Milan, revealed Hachim Mastour plans and warned he is “transparent.”

The Coach spoke to Milan Channel ahead of Sunday’s game with Sassuolo, which kicks off at 19.45 UK time (18.45 GMT).

Months of speculation would suggest it will be his final match on the Rossoneri bench.

“I generally don’t use a mask to hide my feelings. I am transparent,” said the Dutchman.

“I do have sentiments and when I read or hear certain things, they do leave me bitter. However, I am reassured by my rapport with the squad, because if it had been a divided group then we would not have achieved these good results on the field.

“Against Juventus I saw the right direction for my philosophy and ideas. We had character, pace, solidity, but then lacked the final result. I saw good things in several games, but I am growing in my work the same way my players are and we’re getting to know each other too.”

Milan have a very slim chance of qualifying for the Europa League after fumbling a lead to lose 2-1 at Atalanta last weekend.

“We had started well and then lost control of the game,” continued Seedorf. “After the break we adjusted a few things and took the lead, then the penalty arrived.

“We felt that we could have scored a second, but instead at the end this great goal from Atalanta came out of nowhere. A draw would’ve been the more just result.”

The clash with Sassuolo could make history tomorrow evening, as 15-year-old Mastour is brought in from the youth team and many expect him to make his Serie A debut.

“Mastour is truly very young. Clearly he has talent and Milan want to bring him forward with a specific project.

“Adriano Galliani dealt with the details of his contract to secure the lad’s future. We are trying to get him accustomed to a superior level with regards to training methods and his teammates will help his process.”

Thiago Silva: 'I will return to AC Milan'
17.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

“I hope to follow Kaka’s footsteps by one day coming back to Milan,” confessed PSG defender Thiago Silva.

The centre-back was sold to Paris Saint-Germain along with Zlatan Ibrahimovic in July 2012, but regrets not being given the opportunity to say goodbye to the San Siro crowd.

“I hope to follow Kaka’s footsteps by one day, even if not right now, coming back to Milan,” he told Sky Sport Italia.

“Milan was a wonderful time for me. I send the fans a big kiss, hoping to see each other again soon.

“It’s a shame I went away without saying goodbye, but it was only because I didn’t know that I would be leaving Milan.”

Balotelli's house burgled
17.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Bad news for Mario Balotelli, whose house was burgled with gold, watches and a Porsche stolen.

The story emerged in La Provincia di Como, claiming his house in Limido Comasco was robbed this week.

Among the items stolen were watches and gold jewellery, plus his white Porsche S, but the vehicle was found abandoned a few hours later.

Balotelli had been out that evening with his brother Enoch Barwuah and returned to find the house broken into.

This incident comes just days after another scare when someone tried to steal Balotelli’s phone outside a nightclub, sparking a brawl as he chased the thief down.

Kaka on his AC Milan past, present & future
17.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Kaka has revealed he was close to re-joining Milan six months earlier than he actually did.

The Brazil international joined the Rossoneri for a second time in the summer of 2013, but the playmaker has claimed that he was close to coming back when Mario Balotelli signed in January of that year.

“The only time that I was close to returning to Milan was in January 2013 when Milan signed Balotelli,” he told Milan Channel.

“Galliani spoke with Pérez about signing me in January 2013, but the deal didn't go through due to fiscal issues.”

The trequartista then went on to remark on his first stint at San Siro, and how he was almost forced out of the club.

“In 2003, Leonardo and Braida told me that I would have to go on loan at PSG because Milan already had Rui Costa and Rivaldo.

“But in the end, Milan decided to keep me instead of loaning me out to PSG in 2003.”

Kaka then commented on Mario Balotelli’s growing maturity, and his own role at the club.

“Balotelli is becoming more mature, and that's very important for the team. He is very focused at the moment."

“I wanted to play for a big club, and it was wonderful to go straight from Sao Paulo to Milan. I still thank God for that.

“I'm happy that I'm a role model for the youngsters. They have to understand what it means to wear the Milan shirt.”

El Shaarawy: Comeback too soon
17.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Stephan El Shaarawy has conceded that his return from injury came a bit too late for a place at this summer’s World Cup.

The Milan striker has only played five times this season for Milan after suffering a series of foot injuries.

And the young forward has admitted that his exclusion from Cesare Prandelli’s provisional Italy squad was fair.

“I waited right until the end to try and convince the Coach,” he told Corriere dello Sport.

“I wanted to try and win his confidence and get a place on the plane to Brazil.

“But I have to admit that, actually, my comeback came with a few too many games to go.

“Prandelli has spoken to me though, and told me to continue as I am doing.”

Atalanta apologise to AC Milan
13.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Atalanta President Antonio Percassi has telephoned Milan C.E.O. Adriano Galliani to apologise for the racial abuse suffered by Kevin Constant yesterday.

The Rossoneri player had bananas thrown at him by La Dea fans during yesterday’s match between the sides, which ended in a 2-1 victory for the Bergamo outfit.

In a statement on their official website, the club said that Galliani has accepted the apology and that Percassi would also be telephoning Constant personally.

“The President Antonio Percassi personally telephoned Milan C.E.O. Adriano Galliani to pass on the club’s official apologies for what happened during the Atalanta-Milan match yesterday,” it reads.

“The conversation was very cordial and Galliani, who accepted the apologies, underlined that what happened was an isolated incident.

“Antonio Percassi will telephone the player Constant in order to officially apologise to him as well.”

Abbiati hoping for 'miracle'
13.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan goalkeeper Christian Abbiati is hoping for a ‘miracle’ that would see his side qualify for the Europa League.

The Rossoneri had the opportunity to put their destiny in their own hands yesterday in the race for continental qualification, but they were beaten 2-1 by Atalanta.

As a result, they will now have to beat Sassuolo in their final match of the season and hope that neither Torino nor Parma collect maximum points from their encounters.

Speaking to Milan Channel today, the 36-year-old bemoaned the fact his team could not win against La Dea and also said the Rossoneri’s failure to reach Europe would be sad.

“Before the derby I said we would need nine points to get into the Europa League,” Abbiati said.

“If we had won yesterday we would have gone sixth. Now we need to win on Sunday and hope for other results to go our way. It’s out of our hands.

“Milan’s season has been a very strange one. We have been very bad in the League but good in the Champions League until our elimination.

“With the new Coach we improved at the beginning, then started losing a few games, but during the most recent period we have gained a lot of points.

“We are professionals and when we got out on to the pitch we always need to give our best.

“Europa League? I’m still hoping for a miracle. However, coming sixth is not a target Milan should have. We should be fighting for the Champions League, but not seeing Milan in Europe at all is sad.”

AC Milan add Mastour to first team
13.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan have officially placed 15-year-old prodigy Hachim Mastour into the first team.

The trequartista was born in Reggio Emilia from Moroccan parents and won’t turn 16 until June 15.

He already has several sponsorship deals and has filmed promotional videos with the likes of Neymar to show off his skills.

Today CEO Adriano Galliani was at the Milanello training ground to present Mastour as a new member of the first team.

He has until now played for the Allievi Nazionali side, with occasional appearances for the Primavera youth team under Coach Pippo Inzaghi.

It's reported he could well be included in the squad to face Sassuolo this weekend and possibly make his Serie A debut at the age of 15 thanks to special permission from the Lega Serie A.

Mastour joined from Reggiana in 2012 for €500,000, but has already been linked with the Ajax youth academy.

Galliani contact with Spalletti?
13.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

The Gazzetta dello Sport once more report that Milan officials have recently been in contact with Luciano Spalletti.

The Rossoneri are seen to be making preparations for a replacement for Clarence Seedorf come the end of the season, when the Dutchman is expected to be sacked just six months into his tenure.

Speculation has swung from Primavera Coach Pippo Inzaghi to Parma boss Roberto Donadoni in recent weeks, but the Gazzetta dello Sport are reiterating that former Roma man Spalletti may actually be the frontrunner.

The pink paper allege that further contact between the 55-year-old and Adriano Galliani has been made, and as recently as the weekend.

However, a barrier that continues to exist is Spalletti’s ongoing contractual dispute with Zenit St Petersburg.

The Russians removed the Coach from their bench in March, but still have him tied to a contract paying €4m a year and running to June 2015. It is seen that Zenit do not want to pay compensation to the tactician, should they release him from it early.

Matri: 'AC Milan, then we will see'
13.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Alessandro Matri’s future is up in the air after a loan spell at Fiorentina. “I’ll return to Milan, then we’ll see.”

The striker struggled in his first six months with the Rossoneri, scoring just one Serie A goal, then netted four for the Viola.

“I think it was a good season for Fiorentina, as we confirmed fourth place, played good football and it’s a shame we didn’t win the Coppa Italia Final against Napoli,” Matri told Sky Sport Italia.

“I came to Florence on a six-month loan with no option, so at the end of the season I will return to Milan, then we’ll see.

“I think talking about the market right now is premature. I will certainly go back to Milan and then discuss it with the club. Everything is still up in the air.

“I am certainly not happy with my season, as I know I could’ve done better. It’s not helpful to have regrets, but I do know I could’ve and should’ve done more.

“Now we’ll play the last game, enjoy the vacation and think about how to get back on track. I can certainly say I’m eager.”

Inzaghi: We'll decide my future
13.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Pippo Inzaghi expects to sit down with Milan management at the end of the season to decide his future.

The former striker and current Primavera Coach has been increasingly linked with taking Clarence Seedorf’s place as Coach of the senior side from the summer, with it expected that the Dutchman will be moved out just six months into his initial two-and-a-half-year term.

For the 40-year-old, though, there is no looking too far into the future, which is otherwise rumoured to include interest from other clubs. Sassuolo were turned down by the Rossoneri in January and Parma have been suggested as possibly interested this summer.

“At the end of the season I will sit at a table together with Adriano Galliani, the President and Barbara Berlusconi and decide my future,” Inzaghi has told reporters this week.

“I am attached to Milan, this is what counts. I repeat, I am very happy. I am tied to a contract with Milan and now they love me.

“This difficult season? You cannot always win, Milan will return greater. It can happen that after 25 years you do not get into Europe.

“We still have one game to go, let’s see if we can get into the Europa League, and even if they do not make it into Europe, there are conditions in which to do well - you can look at Roma this year.

“Sassuolo? It was a possibility in January, I am happy they are safe from relegation, but I do not want to think about anything.

“Would I go to Juventus? Let me be clear, I have a two-year contract with Milan. I am happy at Milan.

“What would I choose between Sassuolo, Milan and the Primavera? I say Milan’s Primavera because they haven’t won a title in 50 years.”

El Shaarawy maintains World Cup hope
13.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Stephan El Shaarawy has reiterated his hope at making Cesare Prandelli’s provisional Italy squad for the World Cup.

The youngster has missed a majority of the season with a problematic foot injury, but has recently returned to training and in Week 37 made his playing comeback against Atalanta.

“I’m really happy to be back again,” commented El Shaarawy to Milan Channel this week on that return in a subsequent 2-1 defeat.

“We’re disappointed about the defeat as a European finish is further out of reach, but to be back out on the pitch again was really satisfying.

“I’ve always believed in going to the World Cup. In the past months, I’ve given my all to get back as soon as possible and show I’m well.

“I hope to go and I’ve always believed. If I don’t get a call-up, I would go about it in a calm way.

“I would try and get back on track right away with Milan next season. We have the objective of the Scudetto and we will focus on that.”

Speculation is that El Shaarawy will not make Prandelli’s cut today.

Napoli eye up Pazzini
13.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

It’s reported Milan benchwarmer Giampaolo Pazzini is a target for Rafa Benitez at Napoli next season.

The former Fiorentina, Sampdoria and Inter forward has struggled to make an impact at San Siro, often used as a late substitute.

He scored three goals in 20 appearances for the club in all competition this season, albeit playing a grand total of just 835 minutes of football.

According to Sport Mediaset, Napoli Coach Benitez is impressed with Pazzini’s characteristics and sees him as an ideal reinforcement.

‘Pazzo’ would be the understudy to Gonzalo Higuain, much-needed next term with Champions League and Coppa Italia commitments.

Berlusconi on Balotelli and AC Milan's season
12.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan President Silvio Berlusconi has launched a critique on striker Mario Balotelli.

The Rossoneri forward has been in decent form this term, scoring 14 goals in 29 League appearances.

But the club’s owner has insisted that the Italy international needs to ‘learn how to score goals’.

“I want to ask Balotelli if he wants to win,” Berlusconi told Sport Mediaset.

“He will say yes, and then I will tell him that he has to stay closer to the goal.

“Balotelli needs to learn how to score goals.

“Balotelli has extraordinary potential though. He is not a centre forward in our opinion, so he has to learn how to play in that role."

The former Prime Minister then commented on the team’s season overall and Clarence Seedorf’s future as Coach.

“The fans are not satisfied with Milan and neither am I, but the difference is that I'm the one who is putting up the money.

“We are still the most titled club in the world, and we are already working on building the future Milan.

“I'm not satisfied with how Milan are playing. Not at all. Therefore we have to reflect upon this fact."

“Seedorf's future? We will make a decision after the season is over.”

Galliani clarifies 'crazy' comment
12.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adriano Galliani has reportedly called Clarence Seedorf to clarify having allegedly called him ‘crazy’ at the weekend.

During the weekend defeat to Atalanta, the Vice-President was caught on camera apparently discussing with his partner’s son the under-pressure Dutchman’s team selection for the eventual defeat.

Whilst there is no audio to the picture, outlets in Italy allege that in lip-reading the conversation, Galliani labelled Seedorf’s decision to play Keisuke Honda over Adel Taarabt as ‘matto’ - crazy.

Galliani explained after the game that he did not offend the Coach and was only talking in slang, but are running the line that in light of continued attention, Galliani has this morning called Seedorf to clarify this further.

It is believed that Seedorf has understood the tone of the comment and even joked with the Vice-President about it.

It is generally assumed that Seedorf will be sacked at the end of the season, with speculation continuing over who may come in to replace him in the summer.

Europa race down to the wire
12.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Torino, Parma, Milan and Verona are still in the running for the final Europa League qualification spot.

This weekend’s results only ruled Lazio out, as there are four clubs within a two-point radius.

Inter have already secured fifth place, so the final 90 minutes of the season will be decisive.

Torino and Parma drew 1-1 this afternoon, so Toro still have the upper hand with 56 points. If they win away to Fiorentina next week, then the Granata will go into Europe.

However, Capocannoniere Ciro Immobile was sent off today and will therefore be suspended for that trip.

Parma have 55 points and their last game of the season is at home to already-relegated Livorno, so a much easier test.

Crucially, the Ducali have a superior head-to-head record with Torino, as they won 3-1 earlier this season and drew 1-1 today.

That means if these two teams end level in the table, Parma will go into Europe.

However, Milan and Verona aren’t out of the running yet either, despite disappointing results this weekend.

The Rossoneri are on 54 points after a 2-1 defeat to Atalanta, so a victory against Sassuolo – who have already secured their safety – would qualify Milan if Torino lost and Parma failed to win.

There is a big problem for Clarence Seedorf’s men, as they have an inferior head-to-head record with Parma and are level in that sense with Torino and Verona.

Verona drew 2-2 with Udinese and are also on 54 points, so they must win away to Napoli – a game that will be played behind closed doors – and hope other results go their way.

In order to snatch sixth place, Verona would need a victory and for Torino and Parma to both lose, plus Milan not to win.

Serie A stars in Ghana squad
12.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Ghana have named their provisional 26-man squad for this summer’s World Cup, including two Milan stars.

The African nation are in Group G alongside Germany, Portugal and USA for the tournament in Brazil.

And this afternoon Coach Kwesi Appiah named his initial squad that will train together until May 31. Ghana then play the Netherlands before three names are cut for the final 23.

Michael Essien and Sulley Muntari have both been called up, as has Kwadwo Asamoah and former Rossoneri midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng.

Goalkeepers:Adam Kwarasey, Fatau Dauda, Stephen Adams

Defenders: Samuel Inkoom, Daniel Opare, Harrison Afful, Jeffrey Schullp, John Boye, Jonathan Mensah, Jerry Akaminko, Rashid Sumaila

Midfielders: Michael Essien, Rabiu Mohammed, Agyemang Badu, Kwadwo Asamoah, Sulley Muntari, Albert Adomah, Wakasu Mubarak, Christian Atsu, David Accam, Andre Ayew, Afriyie Acquah

Strikers: Asamoah Gyan, Kevin Prince Boateng, Abdul Majeed Waris, Jordan Ayew

Japan call Honda, Nagatomo
12.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan’s Keisuke Honda and Inter’s Yuto Nagatomo have been named in Alberto Zaccheroni’s 23-man Japan squad for the World Cup.

The Serie A based duo are regulars under the Italian tactician and are both in his final selection announced today to head out to Brazil this summer.

“It was a struggle to get the list down to 23,” Zaccheroni has commented in presenting his squad.

“I wanted to call up Sepp Blatter and ask him to let me pick more. But this group of players knows how I want them to play tactically and understands the team ethic.

“Honda, we know, has the character and power to grab the team by the scruff of the neck. We hope he can do the same again.”

Japan World Cup squad

Goalkeepers: Eiji Kawashima (Standard Liege/BEL), Shusaku Nishikawa (Urawa Reds), Shuichi Gonda (FC Tokyo)

Defenders: Yasuyuki Konno (Gamba Osaka), Masahiko Inoha (Jubilo Iwata), Yuto Nagatomo (Inter Milan/ITA), Masato Morishige (FC Tokyo), Atsuto Uchida (Schalke/GER), Maya Yoshida (Southampton/ENG), Hiroki Sakai (Hannover 96/GER), Gotoku Sakai (Stuttgart/GER)

Midfielders: Yasuhito Endo (Gamba Osaka), Makoto Hasebe (Nuremberg/GER), Toshihiro Aoyama (Sanfrecce Hiroshima), Hotaru Yamaguchi (Cerezo Osaka), Keisuke Honda (AC Milan/ITA), Shinji Kagawa (Manchester United/ENG)

Forwards: Yoshito Okubo (Kawasaki Frontale), Shinji Okazaki (Mainz/GER), Hiroshi Kiyotake (Nurnberg/GER), Yoichiro Kakitani (Cerezo Osaka), Manabu Saito (Yokohama F-Marinos), Yuya Osako (1860 Munich/GER)

The Japanese will face Ivory Coast, Greece and Colombia in Group C of the competition, with winners and runners-up from that group facing off against runners-up and winners from Italy’s Group D in the Round of 16.

Donadoni open to Parma exit
12.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Parma’s European ambitions are still alive, but Roberto Donadoni refused to commit his future amid Milan links.

The Ducali have a superior head-to-head record with Torino, so will qualify for the Europa League if they draw and the Granata lose or they win and Toro fail to get three points.

“My future? I have no reflections to make,” Donadoni told Sky Sport Italia after a 1-1 draw at Torino.

“I am proud of what this team has achieved already, which includes getting Gabriel Paletta, Antonio Mirante and Antonio Cassano Italy call-ups.

“For a club like Parma, that is certainly important. It’s our last game, we owe our best to the club and the city.”

Donadoni is the hot favourite to replace Clarence Seedorf at Milan next season and refused to rule out a Parma exit.

“I have a rapport of great respect with the President and director, so we will certainly sit down around a table and make the necessary evaluations at the end of the season.”

Kaka: 'Another year at AC Milan'
12.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Ricky Kaka confirmed he “will stay at Milan, as I want another year,” but wouldn’t comment on Clarence Seedorf’s position.

The Brazilian arrived last summer from Real Madrid and has a clause in his contract allowing him to walk away if they fail to qualify for the Champions League.

However, Kaka told Rai that he has no intention of activating it.

“Am I staying at Milan? Yes, yes,” he assured. “I want to remain for another year, but then it’s up to the club to decide.

“I still enjoy playing football. I had physical problems in Madrid and that moment the pain was stronger than the pleasure.

“In Madrid I learned to have faith, perseverance, patience and much more beyond football. The results weren’t what we expected and it was not easy to deal with the pressure, as it was a situation I wasn’t accustomed to.”

Kaka was hoping to receive a call-up for Brazil’s World Cup squad, but didn’t get the nod.

“It’s a shame, as it could’ve been my fourth World Cup, but I am not sad because I know that I did everything possible. Scolari was consistent in his choices.

“I think Brazil are the favourites, followed by Spain, Argentina and Italy. I see the Azzurri as very strong, with great tactical intelligence.

“Brazil did not use the funds for the World Cup wisely and over the years the investment will leave little to the Brazilian people.”

Today Milan were beaten 2-1 by Atalanta and there was an ugly incident of racism when someone threw a banana at Kevin Constant.

“In my view these problems go beyond football,” said Kaka. “I don’t like that the stadium becomes a spotlight for these people. If someone is racist, then he is at all times, including at work and in everyday life. The people who can do something about this ought to take action.”

That result in Bergamo also left Coach Seedorf hanging by a thread after President Silvio Berlusconi criticised him.

“Let’s leave these matters to the club,” shrugged Kaka.

Seedorf: 'Conscience is clear'
11.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf insists his “conscience is clear” after Milan’s defeat to Atalanta left Europa League hopes in tatters.

The Rossoneri’s chances of securing a top six finish are now extremely slim after a last-gasp 2-1 loss in Bergamo.

“This is a heavy defeat, as we had come here to win,” Seedorf told Sky Sport Italia.

“We did well in the second half, but Franco Brienza’s goal was stunning. Just a minute earlier we had almost scored with Mario Balotelli and deserved to net a second goal.

“There is certainly still hope for Europe because until a few months ago it had seemed impossible. Now we are battling.

“It’s a shame about this result, but we have to wait and see what happens in Torino-Parma. My lads gave their all and I cannot ask for more.”

Seedorf is widely expected to be fired, especially if the Rossoneri fail to qualify for Europe. How does he judge his tenure?

“I do not evaluate, I just think about finishing the season as best we can with this group. There will be time for the rest.

“I am giving my all, so my conscience is clear. I am concentrated on the final game.”

The match in Bergamo was also ruined by an ugly incident when Atalanta fans threw a banana at Kevin Constant, while Nigel De Jong and Philippe Mexes reacted with sarcastic applause.

“I can only compliment my lads because they continued playing,” said Seedorf.

“I don’t need to comment on the rest. Constant and his teammates reacted in the best way by carrying on with their work.”

Colantuono slams banana incident
11.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Atalanta Coach Stefano Colantuono was horrified that some of his fans threw a banana at Milan’s Kevin Constant.

This should’ve been an occasion for the Orobici to celebrate, as they fought back from a goal down to beat their Lombardy rivals 2-1 with the last kick of the game.

Instead, Colantuono found himself faced with footage of a banana thrown from the stands in Bergamo at Milan full-back Constant.

“It was an isolated incident that ruins what should’ve been a day of celebration. It doesn’t deserve any comment,” Colantuono told Sky Sport Italia.

“It was a great victory and I am happy with the win, especially as Franco Brienza scored. The people of Bergamo have only seen the real Brienza on occasion, but he is a player of great quality.

“Now we can target a new club record of points in a single Serie A season. There’s one round to go and that is our objective.

“Our season has certainly been positive and we can say that we won our Scudetto.”

Serie A: Atalanta 2:1 AC Milan - match report
11.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Scorers: Bellini og 52 (M), Denis pen 68 (A), Brienza 96 (A)

A last-gasp 2-1 defeat to Atalanta wrecked Milan’s Europa League ambitions after an ugly incident of racist abuse.

The Rossoneri had won six of their last seven games and were challenging for a Europa League spot, but Clarence Seedorf was still under fire from President Silvio Berlusconi. He stuck with the 4-3-1-2 system used against Inter, but Keisuke Honda came in for Adel Taarabt, while Marco Amelia replaced the suspended Christian Abbiati. Atalanta had mid-table comfort, but revamped the defence with Mario Yepes, Guglielmo Stendardo, Stefano Lucchini and Riccardo Cazzola injured, plus Marcelo Estigarribia banned.

It was a bright start for the hosts, as Carlos Carmona had a very early chance charged down and Maxi Moralez fired off target. At the other end, a series of Rossoneri corners caused problems, but nobody could get the final touch.

A German Denis glancing header was off target and the Orobici wasted a promising counter-attack with Carmona firing straight at Amelia.

Nigel De Jong performed an acrobatic overhead kick that turned into an assist for Philippe Mexes, but he was just unable to get his head to it at the back post.

Milan’s defence managed to leave Maxi Moralez – the shortest player in Serie A – with a totally free header from a Luca Cigarini set piece, but he steered it wide.

Kaka also nodded straight at the goalkeeper before Balotelli had a fantastic chance to score on 41 minutes. He curled a free kick from a tight angle down the left side of the field and it sailed over Andrea Consigli to smack the crossbar.

Moments later Riccardo Montolivo slammed his shot into the side-netting, while Consigli struggled to beat away a viciously swerving Balotelli free kick from distance. The move continued for Honda to nod wide.

Stephan El Shaarawy made his first appearance since undergoing surgery for a fractured foot in December. Kaka turned a header over the bar and Balotelli was halted clear on goal by a tight offside decision.

Milan did eventually break through with a huge stroke of luck. Sulley Muntari burst down the left and rolled across for Balotelli, but Giampaolo Bellini dived in to intercept and accidentally prodded it past his own goalkeeper. It was particularly harsh on Atalanta, as Balotelli was offside.

However, Atalanta got the chance to get back into the game when Kevin Constant clumsily tripped Carmona in the box. Denis stepped up and sent Amelia the wrong way with a delicate finish to draw the hosts level.

Mexes was furious at the decision and moments later received yellow cards for a head-to-head with Cristian Raimondi, though it could’ve been a red for both. Soon after, there was another flashpoint, as an Atalanta supporter threw a banana at Constant, so De Jong and Mexes reacted with sarcastic applause towards the racists responsible.

A Montolivo mis-kick almost turned into an assist for Giampaolo Pazzini, but Bellini was decisive when blocking the shot from six yards.

Balotelli had a free kick from a very promising position, but blasted it into the wall, then curled over from the edge of the box.

SuperMario hit the woodwork for the second time with an audacious strike from the outside edge of the penalty area that flashed across Consigli to crack against the far post.

Balotelli had another effort that was going on target, but Benalouane got a decisive touch to deflect it over. Atalanta also threatened on the counter before El Shaarawy tracked back brilliantly to stop Giuseppe De Luca pulling the trigger.

With the last kick of the game, Franco Brienza unleashed a sudden blockbuster from 20 metres that flew into the near top corner past a helpless Marco Amelia. It was a stunner at the Stadio Azzurri d'Italia and could well end Clarence Seedorf's Milan reign.

Atalanta: Consigli; Raimondi, Benalouane, Bellini, Brivio; Baselli (Migliaccio 75), Cigarini, Carmona; Moralez (Brienza 88), Bonaventura (De Luca 69); Denis

Milan: Abbiati; De Sciglio, Rami, Mexes, Constant; Montolivo, De Jong, Muntari (Taarabt 76); Honda (El Shaarawy 46); Kaka (Pazzini 80), Balotelli

Ref: Rizzoli

Serie A: Atalanta vs. AC Milan - lineups
11.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Atalanta: Consigli; Raimondi, Benalouane, Bellini, Brivio; Baselli, Cigarini, Carmona; Moralez, Bonaventura; Denis.

Atalanta bench: Sportiello, Frezzolini, Caldara, Scaloni, Del Grosso, Migliaccio, Nica, Giorgi, Kone, Bentancourt, Brienza, De Luca.

Milan: Abbiati; De Sciglio, Rami, Mexes, Constant; Montolivo, De Jong, Muntari; Honda; Kaka, Balotelli.

Milan bench: Coppola, Gabriel, Abate, Bonera, Zapata, Emanuelson, Essien, Taarabt, Poli, El Shaarawy, Robinho, Pazzini.

Colantuono warns AC Milan
11.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Stefano Colantuono wants Atalanta to “end on a high” by welcoming Milan, even though he has to reshuffle.

The Lombardy Derby kicks off at the Stadio Azzurri d’Italia at 11.30 UK time (10.30 GMT).

“If we have reached the last two rounds of the season comfortably mid-table, then it just shows how well our campaign has gone,” said Coach Colantuono.

“Just think, we were supposed to be at this stage fighting for survival. Unfortunately we’re in a bit of an emergency situation, as Guglielmo Stendardo hasn’t recovered in time either.

“We are facing a very motivated side and want to give our best so we can end the season on a high.”

Milan need a victory to stay in the race for a Europa League spot, but Coach Clarence Seedorf is under pressure.

“I think Seedorf is doing well, despite his initial difficulties,” continued Colantuono.

“Mario Balotelli deserves a place at the World Cup. There is too much attention on him, as the papers even report if he parked his car badly. He is still young and should be left alone.”

Seedorf: 'What did Berlusconi mean?'
10.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf was irritated and confused by President Silvio Berlusconi’s criticism as Milan face Atalanta.

It kicks off in Bergamo on Sunday at 11.30 UK time (10.30 GMT).

“Balance is the key word after the derby. There is enthusiasm following a victory against a quality opponent, but the week had to be approached with the sole objective of doing well in Bergamo,” Seedorf said in a Press conference.

“We’re riding the wave of the derby, while Atalanta did well against Juventus and have many young players who want to prove themselves.

“My team is in good shape and aware of what is at stake. We must always maintain that psychological balance. I expect the same mentality and grit as we’ve seen in recent outings.”

Despite six wins from the last seven rounds and Europa League qualification still within reach, Seedorf’s position on the bench is extremely shaky.

President Berlusconi made matters worse by commenting the elderly people with dementia he’s doing community service with could control the Milan locker room.

“I have no comment, I have nothing to say. I didn’t understand what he meant. My focus is just on the team and the players. I could joke that it’s easy to control this group, but aside from that I didn’t understand what he was trying to say.

“I am pleased that some players declared they were close to me. It’s always pleasing, as if they say it in public then that means they believe it.

“I don’t want to talk about the President with you, I am relaxed. He praised Vincenzo Montella? You shouldn’t ask me, as he’s the one who said those things. You’ll find a brick wall asking me.

“Ask the club what they think. I cannot speak for others.”

When asked about Berlusconi's comments that Mario Balotelli should find his position in Italy, where he couldn't for Milan, Seedorf vented at the media.

"Don't ask me these questions. I know I've been working as a Coach for three months, but I've been in the football world for 22 years and I am not stupid. I have always been respectful to you and I want you to be respectful to me."

Seedorf raised further questions on his future by accepting a job with the BBC as a pundit during the World Cup.

“I can choose which games I work on, so it’ll only be a few matches. I have been collaborating with them since 2009, all Coaches and directors will be in Brazil this summer, for one reason or another.”

Abbiati out of Atalanta - AC Milan
10.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan are without Christian Abbiati for the trip to Atalanta, but Kevin Constant and Ignazio Abate shook off knocks.

It kicks off at the Stadio Azzurri d’Italia on Sunday at 11.30 UK time (10.30 GMT).

Goalkeeper Abbiati is suspended, so Marco Amelia or Gabriel will be given the gloves in Bergamo.

Valter Birsa and Riccardo Saponara are still injured, but Constant and Abate are available despite being in doubt.

Stephan El Shaarawy was on the bench in last week’s derby, so could get his first appearance since undergoing surgery for a fracture in his foot in December.

Milan squad for Atalanta: Amelia, Coppola, Gabriel, Abate, Bonera, Constant, De Sciglio, Mexes, Rami, Zaccardo, Zapata, Emanuelson, Essien, De Jong, Honda, Kaka, Montolivo, Muntari, Poli, Taarabt, Balotelli, El Shaarawy, Pazzini, Robinho.

Spalletti up for AC Milan job
10.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Luciano Spalletti is becoming the hot favourite for the Milan job after President Silvio Berlusconi criticised Clarence Seedorf.

It was Berlusconi who personally chose Seedorf to replace Massimiliano Allegri in January, convincing the Dutchman to retire from playing six months early in order to begin this new career.

In recent weeks it is reported Seedorf has barely spoken to Berlusconi, who is determined to wield the axe even if they manage to qualify for the Europa League.

Berlusconi aimed a sideswipe at his Coach on Telelombardia, claiming the elderly people in a care home for dementia where the President is doing community service “could control the Milan locker room pretty well

According to the Corriere della Sera, Berlusconi also commented off the record: “I have an idea who the next Coach of Milan will be, but I won’t tell you.”

The main target is ex-Roma and Zenit St Petersburg boss Spalletti.

He was fired by Zenit in February, but still has one year left on his contract worth €4.5m per season.

It’s reported Spalletti will be in Milan next week, though he insists it is a ‘personal’ matter rather than a business meeting.

He is nonetheless expected to sit down with Milan CEO Adriano Galliani.

Berlusconi: 'Elderly do Seedorf job'
10.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Silvio Berlusconi aimed a jab at Clarence Seedorf by suggesting pensioners with dementia “could control the Milan locker room.”

The club President spoke to Telelombardia after his first day of community service at care home the Istituto Sacra Famiglia in Cesano Boscone, which specialises in working with dementia patients.

“I met many people there,” said Berlusconi. “They could control the Milan locker room pretty well.”

This was seen as a sideswipe at current Coach Seedorf, who was convinced to retire early from playing in order to take this job by Berlusconi in January.

However, in the following months their rapport has cooled considerably and it is widely reported Berlusconi wants to get rid of the Dutchman before next season.

The Rossoneri have won six of the last seven Serie A games and are still in contention for a Europa League spot.

Former Prime Minister of Italy Berlusconi is starting community service after he was convicted of tax fraud.

Abbiati: AC Milan to use platform
10.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan’s Christian Abbiati wants the Rossoneri to use their derby win against Inter as a springboard for Europa League qualification.

Victory over the Nerazzurri moved Clarence Seedorf’s side up to eighth in Serie A and the goalkeeper believes another two victories to finish the season will see the team claim a place in Europe.

“Winning the derby always gives you enthusiasm and we will try to use it to our advantage,” Abbiati said to Milan Channel.

“For quite a while now our results have been positive. We slipped up against Roma but we have got a lot of points.

“Before the derby we said that we would need nine points out of nine to get into the Europa League. Now we just need two more victories.

“We know, however, that it will not be at all easy when we got to Bergamo to play Atalanta. It will be a tough atmosphere.”

AC Milan plan for Alex, not Rami
9.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan are reportedly lining up a contract offer for Paris Saint-Germain’s Alex, in favour to keeping hold of Adil Rami.

Rami’s six-month loan spell from Valencia is due to end in the summer and, whilst the Rossoneri have been reported recently as interested in retaining his services, the €7m purchase option is seen as a major barrier.

Subsequently, speculation as returned to alternative options and Tuttosport today are the latest to suggest a move for PSG’s out-of-contract Alex is in the pipeline.

It is believed that the Diavolo are prepared to offer the Brazilian a €2.5m-a-year deal until June 2016.

The purchase option on Rami is said to expire on May 19 and it is believed that should Milan not keep the France international, that a move to the Premier League beckons.

'Robinho interest not only from Brazil'
9.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Robinho’s agent says that the forward would still list Santos as his ‘first option’, but that he also has interest from around the world.

The Milan forward is set for another transfer window of links away from the Rossoneri, with it once more expected that former club Santos will be leading the way.

However, the player’s representative has made clear that this is by no means a certainty.

“Robinho has a contract until 2016,” began Marisa Ramos to today.

“Contracts are made to be broken? Certainly, but agreements can also be found between the two parties. Milan have the opportunity anyhow to evaluate his season.

“A return to Brazil? This is spoken about a lot and I do not understand why. Robinho has interest from all over the world, and yet we always talk about Brazil.

“True, Robinho loves Santos, but first and foremost he is a professional. Had he simply been a fan then he would never have left Santos, but there are market conditions that lead to other roads.

“It is clear that the affection remains, and Santos would be the first choice, but you must always consider where there are the conditions.”

Luiz Felipe Scolari named his 23-man Brazil squad earlier this week and it did not include the Milan man.

“He has accepted it with serenity, whilst on the other hand the competition to get into the 23 with the national team is great.

“Throughout the world there are compatriots who are doing very well and indeed even other players of great talent have been left out by Scolari.

“It is part of the game and Robinho must accept the Coach’s decision.”

Thiaho Silva: I recommend Alex to AC Milan
9.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Thiago Silva recommends PSG teammate Alex to Milan, backs Ricky Kaka and Clarence Seedorf and assesses Italy’s World Cup threats.

The Brazilian centre-back spent three seasons with the Rossoneri before a summer 2012 switch out to Paris Saint-Germain, where this summer he could see fellow defender Alex complete the opposite move, as speculation continues to suggest.

For the 29-year-old, the match between Alex and the San Siro outfit would be a positive one.

“I highly recommend Alex to Milan,” Silva has commented in the Gazzetta dello Sport today.

“Alex is really a defender for big teams. We have to wait until the end of the season to find out, but if he were to go to the Rossoneri then he would certainly do well.

“And I would be happy for him as I would have another friend at a big club.

The Brazil captain reflected also on his former club and in particular compatriot Ricky Kaka and former teammate Clarence Seedorf, now acting as Coach.

“Kaka? I am sure that if he stays, then he can still do very well, his appearances in the Champions League…

“Seedorf is doing well despite the team at his disposal. I think that with him on the bench next season, Milan can aim to get back into the Champions League.”

Thiago turned his attention also to the World Cup and a couple of names up for debate in Italy.

“Mario Balotelli is an incredible striker and I say this as a defender, but he must pay more attention to his life away from the field.

“He has the right personality to make a difference at the World Cup with Italy.

“Verratti? It would be better for us if Prandelli doesn’t call him, but joking aside with him alongside the duo of Andrea Pirlo and Thiago Motta, Italy could reach the final.”

The defender was asked for his view on UEFA’s expected sanctions to be placed on PSG for disregarding Financial Fair Play rules.

“It is not for me to say whether the sanctions on Financial Fair Play for Paris Saint-Germain are right or not, but the President has said that he will not change anything.

“To me, the system seems strange, if one has to pay then you have to pay even if it is then up to us to work hard to help the club.

“My future? PSG are expected to grow, I’m not moving from here.”

AC Milan contact Spalletti
9.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan officials have reportedly made contact with Luciano Spalletti, with a view to appointing him as the club’s next Coach.

The Rossoneri are generally seen as ready to remove Clarence Seedorf from their bench this summer, just six months into a two-and-a-half-year contract, after issues encountered since his midseason arrival in place of Max Allegri.

Whilst it has been in reports so far that Primavera boss Pippo Inzaghi and Parma Coach Roberto Donadoni were the frontrunners to come in, the Gazzetta dello Sport today indicate that one of the outside candidates has in fact been contacted.

The pink paper say that a move has been made to talk to Luciano Spalletti, via club management, whilst they describe Silvio Berlusconi and Adriano Galliani as ‘great admirers’ of the former Udinese and Roma Coach.

Sacked recently from Zenit St Petersburg, the 55-year-old is believed eager to return to working in the peninsula.

However, the contract situation with the Russian club presents a barrier for all parties, with it seen that they are not inclined to immediately agree to the termination of his contract.

Whilst effectively on gardening leave for the remaining year of his deal, Spalletti could reportedly pull in a further €4m in wages.

The Gazzetta dello Sport understand that Milan see this situation as ‘difficult’ but able to be resolved and that if it cannot be, then a move for Fiorentina’s Vincenzo Montella would be plan B.

However, there is a greater barrier to this move, with La Viola reportedly holding a €7m release clause on Montella’s contract.

Europa League qualification if...
9.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

There are six clubs fighting for two remaining Europa League spots in a four-point radius, so it’ll go down to the wire.

Inter’s defeat in the Derby della Madonnina means even the Nerazzurri are not secure of their place in Europe next season.

Fiorentina have already qualified as runners-up in the Coppa Italia, because winners Napoli are in the Champions League.

Because the Viola are also in the top four, Serie A are given an extra spot in the Europa League that otherwise would’ve gone to the Coppa winners. Therefore fifth and sixth will go into Europe.

In Serie A goal difference is irrelevant, as when teams finish level on points the table is decided by their head-to-head record.

This is why we’re giving a round-up of what could happen in the final two rounds.

Inter qualify if...

Inter have 57 points, so two victories would maintain their position and guarantee Europa League qualification. However, they still have to face Lazio – who are in the running for the continent – and also an increasingly desperate Chievo.

The Nerazzurri have a superior head-to-head record with Torino, Verona and Parma, equal with Milan and their tally with Lazio depends on Saturday’s result.

Torino qualify if...

Torino have 55 points and, like Inter, have their destiny in their own hands. Wins against Parma and Fiorentina would secure their spot, but the showdown with the Ducali could be decisive.

The Granata have a superior head-to-head record with Verona and Lazio, level with Milan, inferior to Inter and are still awaiting Parma’s result.

Parma qualify if...

Parma have 54 points and their remaining two games are away to Torino and at home to Livorno. The Ducali can boast a superior head-to-head record with Milan and Verona, but inferior to Lazio and Inter. Their result with Torino could be crucial.

Milan qualify if...

Milan have 54 points, but simply getting two wins will not be enough, so they must hope other results go their way. The Rossoneri will face Atalanta and an improved Sassuolo, who let’s not forget already beat them 4-3 in January to end Massimiliano Allegri’s reign.

Clarence Seedorf’s men are in a particularly dangerous position, as they have no head-to-head records in their favour. They are level with Inter, Torino, Lazio and Verona, while Parma are superior. If they do finish with the same points as those four clubs, then goal difference will come into play.

Lazio qualify if...

Lazio have 53 points and the recent 3-3 home draws with Torino and Verona put a heavy dent in their chances of qualification. It’s a very tough run-in too, as they go into a clash with Inter at San Siro and host a Bologna side battling against relegation.

The Biancocelesti only have a superior head-to-head record with Parma, on a par with Milan and inferior to Torino and Verona. Their tally with Inter will be decided on Saturday.

Verona qualify if...

Verona have 53 points and it will be very difficult for them to snatch a Europa League place. Although level with Lazio right now, they play Udinese at home and Napoli at the San Paolo. Their only superior head-to-head record is with Lazio, while they are level with Milan and on the losing side if they have the same points as Inter, Parma or Torino.

Taarabt: 'I want AC Milan stay'
9.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adel Taarabt confirms he “hopes to stay at Milan, as with this jersey I manage to give 100 per cent.”

The Moroccan international arrived in January on loan from QPR after an unsuccessful spell at Fulham and has found his confidence.

“I never expected to score so early into my time here. We lost at Napoli, but I think I managed to show straight away who I am,” Taarabt told Milan Channel.

“With this shirt I played for the first time at San Siro and in the Champions League. We are in negotiations so that I can stay here and I hope to stay at Milan, as with this jersey I manage to give 100 per cent.

“In England I played behind the strikers, but here at Milan I have a different role and I prefer it.”

The Rossoneri remain in the hunt for a Europa League spot thanks to their victory over rivals Inter.

“We only lost against Roma, but won all the other matches, including the derby, so that is very important for the fans.

“Now we have to focus on Atalanta and Sassuolo, as it’s all still open for Europe and we hope some other results are favourable towards us.”

Kaka on World Cup and AC Milan
9.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Ricky Kaka insists he’s “not surprised” to be out of Brazil’s World Cup squad, but won’t commit his future to Milan yet.

The 32-year-old was not included in the provisional list released by Felipe Scolari, but assures there’s no need to be upset.

“It’s a pity, but I am not sad because I did everything I could,” Kaka told Sky Sport Italia.

“Scolari has always been consistent and made his choices. He hadn’t called me recently, so it would’ve been a surprise to be included. Robinho took the decision the same way I did, we gave it our all to go to the World Cup, but Scolari made other choices.

“I think the favourites for the World Cup are Brazil, Spain and Germany, followed by Italy, Argentina, England and Portugal. I am convinced Mario Balotelli will have a great tournament.”

As for his future at Milan, Kaka dodged the question on whether he’d activate the clause in his contract allowing him to leave if they failed to qualify for the Champions League.

“Perhaps I am more loved at Milan than at San Paulo. I am happy to have come back here and happy with my season too. It has been a special year.

“I still have a year on my contract. I am focusing on the next two games of the season and then we’ll see.

“The Europa League is an objective for us and therefore we have to focus on it, even if it’s not the ideal target.”

Kaka was also unsure when asked about Coach Clarence Seedorf, who only replaced Massimiliano Allegri in January.

“We hear many rumours and don’t know what will happen. We are all behind him, as six wins in the last seven games says a lot.

“We are finding the right position for me with Coach Clarence, because I played on the left, in the middle and the right.

“It’s always better for me to have fewer defensive responsibilities, as it means I can help out the team in attack more.”

The Brazilian then denied reports Massimo Moratti had asked him to cross San Siro for Milan’s rivals Inter.

“There were many rumours, but never anything concrete. I always had a good rapport with Moratti and we never closed that door, but kindly always pointed out that in Italy there is only Milan.”

AC Milan most 'valuable' Serie A club
9.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Forbes released their list of the most valuable football clubs in the world with five Italians in the top 20.

The countdown is announced once a year and calculates the revenue generated by each club.

Real Madrid top the table with a current value of $3.44 bilion and are followed by Barcelona at $3.2 billion.

Milan are considered the most valuable Italian club at $856m in eighth place, behind Manchester United, Bayern Munich, Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City.

Juventus come next in ninth place at a value of $850m and Liverpool complete the top 10.

The other Italian sides in the top 20 are Inter in 14th place at $483m, Roma in 19th at $307m and Napoli 20th at $296m.

Raiola: 'Balotelli not for sale'
8.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Agent Mino Raiola assures Milan “told me Mario Balotelli is not for sale, though we’ll hear many rumours.”

There have indeed been numerous reports on the striker’s imminent exit, with Paris Saint-Germain, Monaco and Manchester United among the clubs linked with a summer bid.

“The only voices that count are those of the player and mine, seeing as I represent him,” Raiola told

“Adriano Galliani told me he is not for sale and this makes me very happy.

“From here to August 31 we’ll hear many rumours on his future, but that’s not a problem.”

Berlusconi wants more Italians
8.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan President Silvio Berlusconi has called for a return to the days when Serie A clubs were obliged to have a certain number of Italians in their squads.

The 77-year-old was asked by Italia7 for comment on the recent Coppa Italia final but admitted he had not watched the match.

“I confess I did not see the Coppa Italia final between Napoli and Fiorentina, though I did see what happened before the match,” Berlusconi said.

“As far as the match goes, I will say that it made me think about the fact that there was only one Italian out on the pitch.

“It was the Coppa Italia final, yet when I saw the two line-ups I noticed that everyone else was foreign.

“I think it was better when there was a set number of Italian players that every team had to have in their squads.”

Pele: Kaka would have been good
8.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Brazil icon Pele believes Kaka and Robinho would have played an important role in the Brazil World Cup squad, had they been selected.

The Milan duo were left out of Coach Luis Felipe Scolari’s 23-man selection and, though the former striker is happy with his country’s squad, he believes it is a little inexperienced.

“The choices Scolari has made are good but it is a very young team,” Pele is quoted as saying by

“There are players who have not been included like Kaka and Robinho who have important experience.

“Maybe they would have been good for the group.”

Maldini: Ideas not enough
8.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Ex-Milan player and Coach Cesare Maldini believes it will be difficult for the Rossoneri to return to compete at the top of European football.

The 82-year-old was asked today about President Silvio Berlusconi’s comments that the San Siro club could not match the spending power of certain clubs under foreign ownership.

“The President’s opinion is absolutely normal,” Maldini said to “It’s the same for a lot of clubs.

“The Arabs have money to throw away and there can’t be any competition.

“I sincerely hope Milan are not now consigned to the second tier of European clubs, but it will be tough to compete.

“There are still some people needed at the club to come in and revive it. The crisis that our country is going through is horrendous and it is difficult to think of alternatives.

“In the recent past, Galliani has been a decisive factor in our success. But, without money, even ideas cannot be enough.”

Seedorf to be World Cup pundit
8.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

It has been announced that Milan Coach Clarence Seedorf will work as a pundit for the BBC during this summer’s World Cup.

The Dutchman performed a similar role during the 2010 finals in South Africa and has again been invited by the British television network to provide insight in Brazil.

The tactician’s agent, Deborah Martin, confirmed that he has accepted the offer but also stressed that it would not impede his work at San Siro.

“Clarence Seedorf was a pundit with the BBC during the 2010 World Cup in South Africa and he has maintained his relationship with them,” Martin said to ANSA.

“He will again work with the BBC during the 2014 World Cup, but only for certain specific matches during the month of June.

“His work with the BBC will be around his commitments in Milan and he will only work on free days.

“This is in the same way as in 2010, when he worked during the break between the two football seasons.”

De Sciglio: Future is at AC Milan
8.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Mattia De Sciglio foresees and hopes his future is in a Milan shirt, as he reflects on the morale boost the weekend’s derby win was.

The young full-back attended an event this week and took questions, including on light speculation surrounding his future and if it would be away from San Siro.

That speculation was prompted last month by the defender’s own assertion that if the club need to sell him, he would consider offers from elsewhere.

“Will I stay at Milan? I simply said that my intention is to stay at Milan, this is the club in which I have grown up and I am happy,” De Sciglio responded to Milannews.

“I wish and hope to wear this shirt for many years, but unfortunately in football you never know, anything can happen.

“I think towards a present and a future with the Milan shirt.”

The 21-year-old considered Milan’s weekend win over Inter, which has left their Europa League qualification hopes alive heading into the final two rounds of Serie A.

“It’s nice to be in the midst of the fans after a very important victory in the derby. We are in a nice climate, the win has given us moral for these last two games.

“The Europa League? We are aiming for that and will try to do well.

“Did Seedorf motivate us heading into the derby? In a match so important, the motivations come from everywhere.

“There was no need for words, you had to think only of the value of the game, which for us was the most important game of the season.

“The success has given us moral, we are happy also because we had not done this in three years, it was my first derby win and I am even happier.”

Berlusconi: I will not sell
8.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Silvio Berlusconi won’t sell Milan, will decide Clarence Seedorf’s future at the end of the season and would take Mario Balotelli to the World Cup.

The club President and former Italian Prime Minister considered a number of issues relating to the Rossoneri this week in an interview with Capital Radio, beginning with continued speculation that he is in talks to sell a majority shareholding of the club.

“No I don’t think so, in spite of a football team that faces many difficulties on the international scene where the protagonists are those who have Arabic money and it is difficult to compete against,” Berlusconi has made clear.

“I think that teams like PSG are owned by those who have wealth without limits.”

Rumours continue to surround Milan’s intentions on the bench in the summer, with it generally assumed now that Clarence Seedorf will be leaving as Coach, just six months into his tenure.

“We will decide together, at a meeting of the board at the end of the season. Clarence has a contract that says he will be with us for the next two years.”

Mario Balotelli has come under scrutiny of late for his performances on the pitch and recent outburst on live television.

“I would take him to the World Cup, but the CT is preparing to do a great job, to persuade him on his position on the field. We, at Milan, have not succeeded.”

Berlusconi was asked for further comment on the scenes before and after the Coppa Italia Final in Rome.

“I have never seen a situation like that and I am not sure that even the Napoli President had this in mind.

“There are those who believe in and identify with their team and do so with real passion. In the papers these days, you have the Napoli ultras as violent, or even criminals, we must definitely distinguish.

“The ultras, for example at Milan, are absolutely people with a spirit that is simple, with a real passion for their team.

“They identify with their team, with players who become their heroes. Indeed, the matches in football are a metaphor for them.”

Sacchi: Seedorf must adapt
8.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan legend Arrigo Sacchi believes Rossoneri Coach Clarence Seedorf should adapt his style of play to suit his players.

The Dutchman succeeded the sacked Max Allegri in January and has led the San Siro side back into the race for Europa League qualification of late.

“He has shown he has some ideas,” Sacchi said to Radio 2. “But there is a great deal of difference between talking and doing.

“He has managed to achieve some decent results, but his style of play has not always worked.

“In other words, if you want to create a rock band but you only have jazz artists at your disposal, it is a difficult task!”

The iconic former tactician was then asked about Milan forward Mario Balotelli.

“Should Balotelli go to the World Cup? The great players show their personality, their reliability and their professionalism.

“If Balotelli ticks those boxes, he should go.”

Brazil: Kaka out, Hernanes in
7.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan playmaker Kaka has been left out of Brazil’s 23-man squad for this summer’s home World Cup.

The Rossoneri trequartista had been hopeful of making Luis Felipe Scolari’s squad for the tournament next month.

But it has been revealed that the former Real Madrid has been left out by the Coach, with Robinho also left at home.

Inter attacker Hernanes has been included though, with Roma full-back Maicon and Napoli’s Henrique also going.

Goalkeeper: Júlio César, Jefferson, Victor

Defenders: Henrique, David Luiz, Thiago Silva, Dante, Marcelo, Maxwell, Dani Alves, Maicon

Midfielders: Ramires, Hernanes, Paulinho, Willian, Fernandinho, Luiz Gustavo, Oscar

Attackers: Neymar, Fred, Hulk, Jô, Bernard

Galliani on Taarabt & Europa League fight
7.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Adriano Galliani has refused to comment on whether Milan will sign Adel Taarabt on a permanent deal this summer.

The trequartista has impressed since his loan move from Queens Park Rangers in January, scoring four in his 12 Serie A appearances.

But with the English side looking for around €7m, it is as yet unclear whether the Morocco international will stay beyond this term.

“We have until May 31 to decide whether to redeem him or not,” the board member told reporters.”

He then commented on the Rossoneri’s fight for a Europa League place.

“It’s clear that it’s up to us. We need six points from the last two games if we want to get into Europe.

“Torino and Parma will be crucial in the race for that sixth place though. If we get six points however, I think we’ll be okay.

“I don’t want to make any predictions – I just want to see us win two out of two.”

Marchetti tops AC Milan list
7.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Federico Marchetti has emerged as the favourite to take over as Milan’s goalkeeper for next season.

With Christian Abbiati not getting any younger, the Rossoneri have been linked with a number of shot-stopper’s for next term.

Levante’s Keylor Navas and Leicester’s No.1 Kasper Schmeichel have both been rumoured to be of interest to the San Siro outfit.

But Sport Mediaset claim this afternoon that the Lazio man is now the club’s prime target for the summer.

The 31-year-old has been plagued by injuries this term, missing a large part of the campaign through neck and abductor complaints.

But that won’t stop Clarence Seedorf’s men trying to sign the Italy international during the off-season.

Van Basten: AC Milan need experience
7.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Marco van Basten says he would never have given the Milan job to Clarence Seedorf, and urges the club to give the role to Roberto Donadoni.

The Rossoneri brought in Seedorf in January but in seeing the side still struggle for form this term, they are expected to release him in favour of Parma’s Donadoni, or Primavera boss Pippo Inzaghi.

“Had it been me, I would never have entrusted the Milan bench to Seedorf,” Van Basten has reflected to Sky on the situation this week.

“The Rossoneri need a more experienced tactician. Donadoni, for example, is perfect, he has been training for 15 years and has the profile and experience needed for this bench.

“At Milan they need experience, but there is also a very talented Coach there in Inzaghi. If they decide to entrust him to the bench, then he would need time.”

The retired striker was asked about continued scrutiny over Mario Balotelli’s chances of reaching the very heights of the game.

“In my opinion, Mario is already world class. The problem is that to become a true champion, he needs greater solidity at a psychological level.”

AC Milan to begin Rami talks
7.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan are reportedly preparing to meet with Valencia to discuss the future of centre-back Adil Rami.

The Rossoneri picked up the French international on an initial six-month loan deal midway through the season, with a purchase option of €7m included for this summer.

Approaching the end of the season, speculation from the Corriere della Sera is that Milan officials are intent on making Rami’s San Siro switch permanent.

However, the belief is that the club also want to negotiate the purchase option and that talks with Los Che, believed to be due soon, will centre on bringing that €7m down.

Should Milan prove unsuccessful, it is seen that they will turn their attention to Paris Saint-Germain defender Alex.

'No truth in Insigne - AC Milan links'
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Source: Football Italia

The agent of Lorenzo Insigne has rubbished rumours that Milan are looking to sign the player from Napoli.

The forward scored twice in the Azzurri’s Coppa Italia final win over Fiorentina on Saturday and is in contention for a World Cup place.

“I don’t know where these rumours come from,” Fabio Andreotti said to “Milan at the moment are in a situation of standby so we haven’t had any contact from them.

“Lorenzo is doing very well. The director Bigon and the President have great faith in him.

“I don’t think there is any way he will be for sale. De Laurentiis wants to make him the Totti of Napoli.

“There is nothing with Milan and I categorically deny there has been any contact with the Rossoneri.

“Lorenzo is represented only by me and has been for eight years.”

Pazzini: AC Milan obligated to win
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Source: Football Italia

Giampaolo Pazzini has commented on how Milan are ‘obligated to win every game’ and that conclusions on the season can only be made at its end.

The Rossoneri are still in with a shout of ending a miserable 2013-14 with Europa League qualification, after victory over Inter on Sunday night left them eighth, a point behind Torino in the current final Europa League qualification position.

“Sunday night was not a good game, but it was a major victory in a derby and that always has a special value. It was important for us to win, we did it and so we are happy,” Pazzini has considered this week.

“To draw comment on our season we must wait until its conclusion, we still have two games to play where we have to do the best that we can, we hope to collect six points.

“A team like Milan is obligated to win every game. We began very badly, now we are doing a little better.

“We just have to think about winning the next two games and only draw opinion once the season is ended.

“For the possibility of Europa League qualification, it will also depend on others, but we will try to have our say until the end.”

Berlusconi: Clubs can't run security
6.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Silvio Berlusconi has rejected the notion that Serie A’s clubs should take an active role in better securing their stadiums.

Following issues before and after the Coppa Italia Final in Rome on Saturday night, the Italian government has called for action to be taken to better organise and protect football from hooliganism.

Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has commented that action will be taken, which Minister for the Interior Angelino Alfano has today indicated will involve introducing new security measures, with the co-operation of the clubs.

However, Milan President’s and the former Italy Prime Minister has rejected this suggestion on financial and logistical grounds.

“We must continue in the identification of those responsible for acts of violence and to prohibit them access to the stadiums,” Berlusconi has commented today on Radio Anch’io Sport.

“I do not think it is useful and possible, what I have read, and that is that stadium security should be entrusted to the football clubs.

“For two reasons - all the clubs presently have difficult budgets, many in deficit and they cannot afford this expense.

“And because they would never have the expertise for an effective security system.

“It would help to tighten the Daspo prohibition of access to sporting events and it should be applied to the fans who deserve it.”

Galliani: Three down, six to go
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Source: Football Italia

Adriano Galliani has reiterated Milan’s hope to pick up two more wins to see out the season and make the Europa League.

The Rossoneri are looking to end a disappointing season with a late push to secure qualification to the UEFA competition and victory over city and objective rivals Inter on Sunday has left that ambition open.

“It’s always great to win the derby because it has been a while since we’ve done so,” Galliani has commented to Milan Channel this week.

“We knew that to get into the Europa League we have to collect nine points, and we have the first three.

“Now we are missing two more games and less that 60 points is not going to get us into Europe.”

Maldini: 'If AC Milan want me...'
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Source: Football Italia

Paolo Maldini launched a new attack on Milan, their infrastructure and strategy, but is “ready to work with them if given the chance.”

The former defender has been fairly open about his disagreements with current joint CEO Adriano Galliani, plus the job offer he turned down from Paris Saint-Germain.

“Milan are going through a difficult period because two or three years ago they sold 11 or 12 players all together, those who had formed the basis of this squad in previous years,” Maldini told BeIn Sport.

“The club did not find adequate replacements, especially as the economic potential is different to the past. There was perhaps a lack of planning that made this generational change more painful than it should’ve been.”

Clarence Seedorf won the Derby della Madonnina last night, but reports continue to suggest the Coach will be fired at the end of the season anyway.

“I know him well as a player, but as a Coach it’s completely different and he has to measure himself up against this new position.

“It’s not easy, because he has a team that was constructed in a very unbalanced way and therefore it becomes an even tougher and important test for him.

“Let’s just say this is not the ideal situation to start a new profession.”

Maldini’s father Cesare is a Coach and many of his former teammates have gone into management, but Paolo insists he wants nothing to do with the bench.

“Once I retired from playing I made a choice, which was not to become a Coach. I didn’t even take the coaching course.

“The fact that I don’t work for Milan might seem strange to many people, but in reality of all the people of accompanied me in my 25 years with the Rossoneri, hardly anyone still works there.

“It’s not so strange, it is just the strategy of the club and we must adapt to it. If one day I am given the chance to work with and give something more to Milan, then I am certainly ready.”

Serie A: AC Milan 1:0 Inter - goal/highlights
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AC Milan unveil 2014-15 kits
5.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Milan have presented their new Adidas kits for the 2014-15 season, including one commemorating Brazil.

The Rossoneri had been due to play with the new away shirt from the Milan Derby, but opted to postpone that change for a week after pressure from fans to play this huge game in the traditional kit.

Instead, the yellow third choice shirt which references the colours of the Brazil strip will be worn in Sunday’s match with Atalanta.

To confirm the Seleçao connection, the advertising campaign has this shirt worn by Ricky Kaka, Robinho and goalkeeper Gabriel.

The club also unveiled its new font, called Milan Type, for writing the names and numbers on the back.

Serie A alerted to Barcelona departures
5.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Several Serie A sides have been alerted to the fact that a number of Barcelona players will leave in the summer.

Catalan daily Sport have revealed this morning that Isaac Cuenca, Cristian Tello, Ibrahim Afellay, Jonathan Dos Santos and Oier Olazabal will be sold at the end of the season.

All five players have seen first team opportunities hard to come by at Camp Nou this term, and with sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta set to sign a host of new names, those youngster will be allowed to leave the Blaugrana.

Milan, Inter and Juventus are all thought to be keen, with Tello topping the list of prospects.

They will face competition from sides all over Europe however, with Arsenal, Liverpool and Ajax interested in adding some Masia magic to their XIs in 2014/15.

Seedorf explains surprise tactics
5.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Clarence Seedorf explained his tactical switch against Inter and an “emotional” 1-0 Milan Derby victory.

“It was an emotional derby, as always, and I was proud to see how the team fought hard and received deserved applause at the end,” he told Sky Sport Italia.

The Rossoneri got back on track after last week’s 2-0 defeat to Roma and are right in the thick of the race for a Europa League spot.

The top six go into Europe and Milan are currently joint seventh with Parma, one point behind Torino and three shy of Inter.

“We declared that we want to fight to the end for this target, which is tough as there are so many teams involved in the race. We continue to believe and beat an Inter side that battled, but my lads had something more in terms of determination and solidity.

“They did very well in defence, as it’s not easy to mark Mauro Icardi and Rodrigo Palacio.”

Seedorf surprised by moving to a 4-3-1-2 system with Adel Taarabt behind Ricky Kaka and Mario Balotelli.

“We had a diamond midfield with Balotelli and Kaka helping out in defence and Taarabt on Esteban Cambiasso. It was very important to keep an eye on Cambiasso, as he can become very dangerous when Inter have possession and often combines with Palacio, so we tried to limit that connection as much as possible.

“The defence is stronger when the whole team works to help out. They understand now how important it is to be aggressive and double up the marking. Nigel De Jong, for example, did brilliantly to be the extra man in defence.”

Despite splendid results, Seedorf remains in doubt for next season, as the club remains unconvinced.

“I am accustomed to criticising myself and have done throughout my career. I consider myself a winner and a winner gives his all. I want to thank the team for their efforts and I was confident over the week, as I could see how concentrated they were in training.

“The way they celebrate together on the field says more than words could. The season isn’t over yet and we have a tough game against Atalanta next week, so we will enjoy the derby win tonight and then begin preparing.”

When discussing the tactical switch, Seedorf hinted it was a move towards the vision of President Silvio Berlusconi.

“My first concern was to find solidity in the two phases. This team has achieved that recently. In this game I wanted to surprise Inter by changing the system, especially as I said the philosophy was more important than the system.

“We know the President likes this system and for next season we eventually have plans to play more in this shape.

“I am working in a relaxed situation thanks to the team that is eager to fight hard for Milan. I can joke about the situation.”

CEO Adriano Galliani was asked about Seedorf’s future and only said he has a two-year contract.

“It’s what I said in the Press conference too. Is it a confirmation? It is a great truth,” laughed the Dutchman.

De Jong: 'Derby win for Seedorf'
5.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Nigel De Jong dedicated the Milan Derby winner to Coach Clarence Seedorf and believes in Europe.

The Dutch midfielder scored his first goal of the season with a free header on Mario Balotelli’s set piece to beat Inter 1-0.

“This game was doubly important,” he told Sky Sport Italia after the final whistle.

“Everyone saw in recent weeks how tough it was for our team, so it was fantastic to win and we must continue along this path for Europe.

“We have never given up, so we have to carry on and I believe we can get a place in the Europa League.”

De Jong had a special dedication for Coach Seedorf, whose future remains in doubt.

“This victory is for him, as people talked too much about his position this week, but he is very important for the squad.”

Serie A: AC Milan 1:0 Inter - match report
5.5 || webmaster

Source: Football Italia

Scorer: De Jong 66 (M)

A rare Nigel De Jong header gave Milan some bragging rights over Inter and all three points in the Derby della Madonnina.

There was local pride at stake in this showdown, but also precious points in the race to qualify for the Europa League for two giants who had fallen on tough times. Andrea Poli and Mattia De Sciglio came in for Keisuke Honda and Daniele Bonera, while Valter Birsa and Riccardo Saponara were injured. Inter welcomed back Walter Samuel and Rolando from suspension, plus Jonathan after injury, but Juan Jesus is out for the season.

Milan had not beaten their ‘cousins’ in any of the last five derby meetings, but Clarence Seedorf tweaked his tactics for a diamond midfield with Ricky Kaka closer to Mario Balotelli.

SuperMario forced an early save out of Samir Handanovic with a screamer from distance, but play was halted for a push on Esteban Cambiasso.

Philippe Mexes was booked for an awful tackle on Mauro Icardi, while Yuto Nagatomo skipped past De Sciglio at the by-line and Christian Abbiati did well to intercept his assist for Rodrigo Palacio.

Inter’s promising attack was halted by an incorrect offside flag with Palacio ready to run into the box.

De Sciglio had a difficult start to the game after his long injury lay-off and had a good chance when he found space down the right on Adel Taarabt’s slide rule pass, but his cross-shot hit the side-netting.

Handanovic smothered a Kaka shot at the base of the near post and plucked a Balotelli free kick out of the air.

Milan had the best chance of the half on 37 minutes when Kaka trapped a long ball and was one against two, but still got his shot away to dip viciously over Handanovic and smack against the crossbar.

De Sciglio had a huge stroke of luck when he slipped one-on-one with Palacio in the final third, but still managed to stick out a leg in the right place and win the tackle.

In the final move of the half, Kaka got on the end of a cross at the back post, but was leaning back and ballooned the half-volley over from a tricky position.

Straight after the restart Rolando’s poor clearance gifted Balotelli, but the Portuguese defender made up for it by flinging himself at the shot to charge it down.

A corner was taken short to find Icardi in space only for him to shin off target, while Mexes went closer at the other end with his header whistling wide from the flag.

Milan eventually broke the deadlock from a set play, as Balotelli whipped in a splendid free kick from the right for Nigel De Jong’s free header from four yards. It was Cambiasso who lost sight of the Dutch midfielder.

De Jong proved decisive at the other end moments later, as his sliding tackle did just enough to deflect Palacio’s strike over the bar.

Giampaolo Pazzini came off the bench to face his former club and made an immediate impact, but not a good one. He was in an offside position when Balotelli’s shot came through and got a deflection on the way through, so was interfering with play.

Walter Samuel ran a big risk when kicking the back of Balotelli’s leg, as he had already been booked. SuperMario then hit a free kick from distance that Handanovic needed two attempts to control.

Diego Milito came on for his final Milan Derby, but all the substitutions were used up, so there was no last salute in this fixture for Javier Zanetti, who will retire at the end of the season.

Ignazio Abate replaced Kevin Constant late on, moving De Sciglio to left-back. A Hernanes free kick found Milito’s header over the bar and Christian Abbiati was booked for time-wasting, which means he’ll be suspended against Atalanta.

Milan: Abbiati; De Sciglio, Rami, Mexes, Constant (Abate 85); Poli (Muntari 72), De Jong, Montolivo; Taarabt; Kaka (Pazzini 75), Balotelli

Inter: Handanovic; Ranocchia, Samuel, Rolando; Jonathan (Alvarez 78), Hernanes, Cambiasso (Guarin 69), Kovacic, Nagatomo; Palacio, Icardi (Milito 82)

Ref: Bergonzi

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