NEWS
Tuesday July 31 2012
Berlusconi on need for new Milan

Milan President Silvio Berlusconi has conceded that the club can’t afford to spend big on the transfer market – but failed to rule out a return for Kaka.

Speaking with Milan Channel on Tuesday, the former Italian Prime Minister moved to reassure anxious fans that the summer revolution at San Siro will not affect their ambitions.

“I believe the present Milan side, contrary to what journalists say, is a strong squad with five super champions in attack which no other Italian team can match,” he noted.

“We feel very strong and I’m certain we will be protagonists in Serie A. I have faith in a good season.

“The economical situation doesn’t allow us to have highly-paid players, like those which have marked our previous transfer campaigns. Milan can’t afford that, but it doesn’t mean we are giving up on winning.

“It means that we have to develop a strong youth system and a network of scouts who are on the hunt right across the world.

“Barcelona did that and we have to follow that path to construct a strong and winning Milan. My Milan started that way under Arrigo Sacchi.

“I tell the fans to stay calm. There is an opportunity to play an entertaining and effective brand of football, even in a climate where we can’t afford any crazy spending.

“They shouldn’t be scared of change, but they need patience. It will take longer than one season.”

It became clear in June that the Diavolo were set for some big changes after the likes of Alessandro Nesta, Gennaro Gattuso, Clarence Seedorf and Pippo Inzaghi all left at the end of their contracts.

Milan then sold Thiago Silva and Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Paris Saint-Germain for around €65m.

“We’ve waved goodbye to 11 players, of which I include Andrea Pirlo, for financial reasons,” Berlusconi added. “It was painful but necessary.

“It was impossible for us to reject Paris Saint-Germain’s offer for Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva. It has saved us a lot of money in transfers and wages, meaning our finances are secure for the next three or four years.

“We didn’t intend to sell and said no at the start, but Leonardo insisted. We then thought about the Financial Fair Play. We had to accept with our weeping hearts.

“I’m convinced that we won’t miss Ibra in attack. At the back we have a new signing in Francesco Acerbi who we believe in and the market is still open. We only need to strengthen in defence.”

That statement does seem to contradict the market activity of Adriano Galliani who is attempting to re-sign Kaka from Real Madrid.

“I haven’t talked to Galliani and the other directors about Kaka. He is still in our hearts as a player and a man. I won’t rule out this possibility, but we have to look at the situation.”

Berlusconi also said he would be willing to consider selling a stake in the club in order to improve their spending power.

“The doors are open for foreign investment. Whatever is good for Milan will be considered. Milan are the most successful club side in the world and I’m sure we will continue to be at the top in all competitions.”

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