Sinisa Mihajlovic fired up the fans ahead of Monday’s Genoa Derby. “Sampdoria fans have already won.”
This fixture was meant to be played today at 11.30am GMT, but was moved to Monday at 19.45 GMT due to security fears. Click here for a match preview.
“I am not scared of Genoa or the jeers of their fans,” shrugged the Blucerchiati Coach in his Press conference.
“Giampiero Boniperti once said winning was not the most important thing, but it was the only thing that counts. Tomorrow will be different, but I still agree with him.
“I think the Sampdoria fans have already won, as they chose these colours to support.”
Mihajlovic is a former Samp player, but his only Derby della Lanterna was a 2-2 draw in the 1996-97 Coppa Italia.
“As long as we see Marassi full and get to experience the emotions of the Genoa Derby, I’d have even played at midnight on Tuesday.
“However, I do find it absurd that the authorities waited until 48 hours before the game to move it. Preparation for a match is based on specific timed and targeted training sessions, while keeping the tension high is not easy either when suddenly moving it all back.”
Both teams have changed their management since the last derby, as Gian Piero Gasperini is now at Genoa.
“Our attitude has changed and we’ve already proved we can take on any opponent,” continued Mihajlovic.
“Genoa are probably the favourites, because Gasperini’s teams play well, are organised and pretty attack-minded. Alberto Gilardino is an important player. Of course, all sides have strengths and weaknesses.
“I know how important this is for the fans, but aside from it all this is still a game worth three points. Of course, I prefer to achieve safety while winning the derby, but I don’t want to win this match if it means we won’t stay in Serie A. That is our real objective.”
Think you know your Italian football? Share your knowledge, tips and comments to win cash prizes in OLBG's tipster competition - £5,000 monthly.