Fiorentina boss Sinisa Mihajlovic admits he was “ashamed” of their performance against Juventus, but hopes to make up for it with Genoa.
The Viola were beaten 2-1 in a big grudge match on Tuesday evening, but were particularly under the cosh in the first half.
“I was ashamed of those first 45 minutes in Turin. I was just as upset as the fans,” said the under-fire Coach.
“Yet I had told my players that these are the games you'll regret, so you have to play them to the max. Then there was a problem because our three midfielders had never really played together before. The whole team lacked character, though.
“If you don't have character, then you can't buy it. Watching the Juventus game back, I just couldn't believe my eyes. I never expected such a reaction. I don't understand why, because they trained well and prepared the match in a certain way, but couldn't do anything.
“Nobody took responsibility, nobody made themselves available, although we did react in the second half. I cannot explain it, but we must never repeat that performance again.”
Mihajlovic was already under pressure, but with failure to beat Genoa on Sunday afternoon, he could well face the sack.
“It could be the last chance saloon against Genoa, but my soul is always that of a fighter and we'll try to win. Of course it won't be easy, but I am relaxed and I know what happens in football. When things don't work, the first to pay is the Coach.
“Do I have any regrets? I'm sure I made some mistakes, but right now I can't think of anything I'd have done differently.”
Mihajlovic had an appeal for the Fiorentina fans who have been calling for his departure since last season.
“The fans have the right to do almost anything, apart from personal insults. I am sure they'll cheer on the team and help us win the game, then if things don't go well, they have the right to protest. It's a small city, so everything is amplified, but the pressure here is really no different to anywhere else in Italy.
“I realise I have to win, but the club has set me no ultimatum.”
Valon Behrami is suspended, while Riccardo Montolivo returns from his one-match ban.
Houssine Kharja could be penalised, though, as Fiorentina discovered he still lives in Milan and has been commuting to training in Florence.
“He had assured me he only went to Milan two or three times a week. Obviously he has some family issues, but this really is not positive and he must not do it again.”
Think you know your Italian football? Share your knowledge, tips and comments to win cash prizes in OLBG's tipster competition - £5,000 monthly.