Fiorentina Coach Vincenzo Montella believes his team has what it takes to catch Napoli in the race for Champions League qualification.
The Viola won 1-0 at San Paolo on Sunday but still trail Rafa Benitez’s side by seven points with nine matches remaining.
I believe in getting third place,” Montella reflected at his Press conference ahead of tomorrow night’s match with Milan.
“Everything depends on how the next two games go. With two victories we will really be able to think about it moving forward.”
“I now have a year’s more experience, in more competitions and more matches.
“In life experience counts, and new matches bring new experiences every time.
“It’s been an important year and it will be right until the end. The experiences we have had will mature us as a team.
“All things considered I think it has been a great season for Fiorentina because we have done well in three competitions.
“We had an excellent Europa League but were unlucky to draw Juventus, a team who came out of the Champions League.
“We are in the Coppa Italia final and in the fight for third place depite the difficulties we’ve had with injuries.
“It’s not even been easy to consolidate fourth place, but we are there.”
The Florence outfit will however have to negotiate the next month without striker Mario Gomez, who suffered a knee injury against the Partenopei.
“I feel sorry for the team,” Montella said. “Gomez and Giuseppe Rossi are two players who can make the difference when they are at peak physical condition.
“They will be like new signings next season. It’s inevitable we will miss them a lot.
“I’m not sure if we will have them playing together before the end of the season.
“We will see, with Gomez at least it is nothing serious. He will give us an added boost when he comes back.
“There is Matri who can come in, and also Matos who is fit and has maybe played less than he has deserved.”
The 39-year-old then commented on tomorrow’s opponents, crisis club Milan.
“They are a long way from us in the table,” he stated. “But they have players who can decide a game at any moment.
“They great players can show their character in important games.
“But I don’t really want to comment on their tough period. They are a team that maybe needs reconstruction, but for the last 20 years they have been at the highest level globally.
“I don’t think Milan have changed that much under Seedorf since Allegri. The players are the same.
“They are moving forward with a plan, maybe even a long term one.
“I don’t know Balotelli personally, but he seems a nice person. He is a player who can decide a games at any time.
“I hope tomorrow he doesn’t play and is rested. If I could choose he wouldn’t play!”