In the aftermath of the last day of the championship before the long winter break, from which the Milan came out the winner after a very tough challenge with Fiorentina, decided only in the 92nd minute by a lucky own goal by Milenkovic, Stefano Pioli has returned to Parma, the city where he grew up. To the Royal Theater in fact, it took part in the ceremony for the awarding of the international “Sport and Civilization” prize, awarded annually by the Parma section of the Union of Veterans of Sport. The AC Milan coach was awarded the “A life dedicated to sport” award also thanks to the victory of the last Scudetto at the helm of the Rossoneri.
THE PUBLIC SINGS STILL PIOLI’S ON FIRE – “It’s something absolutely thrilling. It’s a chorus that started with my players and the fans started singing it before the Scudetto was won and this gives me even more satisfaction. Of course, reviewing the images of the past season … we have given ourselves great emotions. “
WAS AC MILAN NOT THE STRONGEST TEAM, WAS THE BEST TEAM? – “No, in my opinion it was the strongest team. In the most decisive moment of the championship, when we had to win 6/7 games with pressure on us, the boys were very good at winning them all, demonstrating a mentality, a cohesion, a soul and a lot of talent that the other teams were not able to have until in the end.”
NOW THERE IS ANOTHER LONG PAUSE, LIKE IN THE TIME OF LOCKDOWN – “I like this thought of yours. We know this is a truly anomalous championship. Budgets are being made that are not correct because we are only in the 15th championship. There are still 23 games, almost 70 points available, so there is room for all the teams. IS The path that Napoli is taking is certainly also anomalous, making incredible results. When the players return from the World Cup, it will be necessary to see how the individual teams and individual staff will manage them. “
THE PROGRAM FROM HERE TO 4 JANUARY – “Rest well because we have played so many games, we have never played so much. In December we will start training again, playing many friendlies, training at Milanello and waiting for our 7 national teams. But the important thing is that they will return to a group that still has many goals to achieve. We still have championship, cup, super cup and Champions. When they find such a stimulated group even those who return from the World Cup, I am sure they will come back with the right mentality. “
THE TEAM UNDERSTANDS THE DECISIVE MOMENTS – “The team has grown mentally and is able to recognize opportunities more and more. The performance of Cremona I think it was the most critical step that damaged the ranking. If we had managed to get those victories with Cremonese and Turin, I think we would have an excellent classification. Napoli are doing an exceptional league. Yesterday we knew that we had to show that we wanted to finish well and we played with great intensity against a team that created great difficulties for us and yesterday’s victory means believing in it, having great spirit, great quality, because you can’t win such difficult games if you don’t have quality. “
DE KETELAERE NEEDS TIME – “Our company has its own idea. When we say that we need to invest in young people, we all agree, but then we have to wait for them, wait for guys who come from a different football, from a different country, from a different culture, different habits, so it is normal to have difficulties. We are convinced that we have hired a quality, intelligent and helpful guy. “
A RETURN TO PARMA IS POSSIBLE? – “I am 100% Parmesan, I have all the affections here and when I want to feel really good I come here. It was a big disappointment to be able to do well here, but I came at a particular time and I probably wasn’t quite as ready as I am now. The future is difficult to predict in our profession. What interests me is to always have the same enthusiasm, the same passion and the desire to improve. I will face the future and we will see what happens. “
The respective prizes will also be collected by the world champion gymnast Asia D’Amato, Fefè de Giorgi, head of the men’s volleyball team, who also climbed the top step of the World Championships in 2022, and Fausto Desalu, medal gold in the 4×1000 relay at the last Olympics.
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