Pioli celebrates best Milan start since 1954

by | Oct 26, 2021 22:24

Stefano Pioli hails Milan after their best Serie A start in 67 years, warning Torino ‘are very tough to play against,’ especially with an injury crisis.

It was another far from impressive performance after the scraped 4-2 win at nine-man Bologna on Saturday.

This time Olivier Giroud’s early tap-in from a corner proved enough at San Siro, as Toro clipped the crossbar with Dennis Praet and forced a couple of Ciprian Tatarusanu saves.

“It was our fourth game in 10 days with very little option for rotation and Torino are very tough to play against,” Pioli told DAZN.

“We controlled it well, kept a lid on it, then Torino only really threatened towards the end when they threw caution to the wind and poured everything forward.”

Considering the injury crisis, the Rossoneri can be more than happy to secure nine wins in their opening 10 Serie A rounds, something the club had only achieved once before in 1954-55.

Serie A | Milan 1-0 Torino: Giroud does enough

“I know and appreciate these lads so much. Torino are in great shape, playing good football, we went a bit too deep in the second half, but even then barely ran any risks other than from set plays.

“If we want to play a certain type of football, we need intensity. Naturally, it’s tough to train now with games every three days, but we accepted tonight was a battle of various duels around the field and we won some, lost others.

“There was a difficult moment in the second half, but we came together and took home three very important points.

“Torino were very aggressive, we should’ve moved them more with our midfielders and create spaces for the full-backs to go forward, but it was a struggle. Sometimes it’s right in these complicated, difficult and important situations to just get the job done.”

The injury crisis is remarkable, although is starting to calm with the return of Theo Hernandez and Franck Kessie today, while Brahim Diaz was given the all-clear after recovering from COVID-19.

“The club did so well to create such a complete squad that has allowed me to get through certain absences and difficulties. I am above all sad that I haven’t been able to give Rafael Leao a rest, but this generosity and hunger of the team is good to see.”

Following the win at Bologna, this was another fairly ugly performance from Milan, but Pioli predicts an upswing this weekend against Jose Mourinho’s Roma.

“Torino, Verona and others in that style are very difficult to play against, but I hope the next matches will be different because the opponents are different.

“Roma are a good side, they have a lot of attacking options and it will be an intriguing game at the weekend.”

Milan

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