On the eve of the match against Newcastle, Pioli: I am indebted to the fans for the defeat in the derby. Why did Ibrahimovic visit us?

2023-09-18 17:16:03Sport SHKRUAR NGA REDAKSIA VOX
Stefano Pioli

Milan, after the heavy 5-1 defeat in the derby, immediately returns to the field, to start its journey in the group stage of the Champions League 2023-2024 on Tuesday.

For the Milanese, who are included in Group F, the first opponent will be Newcastle. The English team, like PSG and Borussia Dortmund, will compete with Milan to reach the knockout stage.

A group that, at least on paper, looks very balanced.

Stefano Pioli introduced the match against Newcastle in the press conference: "We had high expectations for our derby, then it went wrong. It was a big disappointment, but now we start the Champions League, where we have to do self-criticism. We know how important a positive start to the group would be.

Newcastle seems to me like the classic English team, with a lot of intensity, that exerts pressure, very physical, with more than five players over 1.90 meters, very dangerous in dead balls and in any case with quality".

An explanation for Ibrahimovic's visit: "He was supposed to come on Friday, before the derby, then he had an unexpected commitment and came today. We were glad to see it. He spoke to the boys individually, he did not give a speech to the group. He asked me how the players are doing, but nothing in particular, except for our things."

The disappointment after the 5-1 defeat in the derby is great: "These failures in the derby carry a lot of weight. If I could I would give everything I have to change these results. I owe it to the fans."

Tomorrow he will have Sandro Tonali as his opponent: "I will hug him with a lot of love. We won together, it will be exciting for him to return to the 'San Siro', we wish him the best... but after the next game".

Expectations in the Champions League: "Improving means getting to the end. We have to focus step by step, for now let's focus on the group, which is very balanced, with PSG slightly favored and top-level teams that can take points away from each other. The experience we have gained allows us to face the group with conviction, strength, knowing that starting tomorrow it will be very important".