Gian Piero Gasperini admits ‘Milan were superior on the night and simply had more’ than Atalanta after the 2-0 defeat at San Siro, practically giving up on a Champions League place.

La Dea did not manage a single shot on target at San Siro, failing to test the rusty Mike Maignan on his comeback after five months out with a calf injury.

Instead, the Rossoneri got a stroke of luck with the ferocious long-range Theo Hernandez volley that hit the woodwork and bounced in off Juan Musso’s back.

Junior Messias missed a sitter, but made up for it with a late delicate dinked finish over Musso from Rafael Leao’s assist.

“This is Atalanta, we gave our all this evening and tried everything, but Milan were superior on the night and we must learn from these games to focus on the next against Udinese. That will be very important, as it can allow us to maintain a gap from the teams behind us in the table,” Gasperini told DAZN.

“What we saw tonight was that despite our best efforts, it is evident that Milan simply had more than we did.”

Ederson and Teun Koopmeiners started together in a bid to control the midfield, but Atalanta still failed to really take control of the game at any stage.

“It was partly Milan’s aggressive approach, partly we did not achieve what we wanted to and did not manage to start counter-attacks as reliably. We were also unfortunate on the goal, because with the first shot on target from distance, it went in and made things more difficult.

“This is a team that has played well with pace, aggression and determination, but today we faced a team with defenders who were just as quick. So technique and quality are not the strengths of this particular squad.”

Atalanta are indeed a very different team this season and it has also seen changes in that they rely heavily on strikers Ademola Lookman and Rasmus Hojlund rather than contributing from defence and midfield.

“We need goals from everyone. I don’t know if Lookman can repeat the number of goals he scored in the first half of the season, although we hope he will. Hojlund is young and will improve, while the others have so far not contributed as many goals as they should. We hope that they can become decisive in the final stages of the season, otherwise Atalanta become too limited.”

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