Clarence Seedorf explained his midfield picks and tactical choices after Milan’s 1-1 draw with Torino . “We need to spread the play.”
Ciro Immobile’s counter-attack had given Toro the lead, but Adil Rami equalised after the break with a deflected piledriver.
“I did say beforehand Giampiero Ventura’s teams are very well-organised and we saw that again tonight. As for my team, we had a little more patience in the second half to spread the play and that made the difference,” he told Sky Sport Italia.
On the touchline, the Coach was seen repeatedly urging Keisuke Honda and Robinho to go wider.
“In the first half Torino were still a little deep, so Honda tried to break through, but you have to spread the play to stretch out opposition defences. It requires patience and my players had more of that after the break, forcing the opponents to move out of position.
“The team is not split between attackers and the rest, let’s not create a cliché. On the goal it was a ricochet that sparked the counter-attack, so you have to take that into account. Torino made the most of their chances to be dangerous in the first half. With our defenders pushing up to support the attack, it’s natural to run a few risks, but it is a calculated risk.”
Seedorf surprised by leaving Nigel De Jong on the bench in favour of Sulley Muntari and Riccardo Montolivo, but explained his choice.
“It was nothing against Nigel, who has done very well, but I knew we’d have a lot of shots from distance and so Muntari and Montolivo are more suited to that role. I also took the opportunity to rest Nigel, as we’ll need him in great shape.
“I believe Rami has great potential and is a very positive lad who is giving us a big hand. He still needs to get to know Italian football, though.
“Urby Emanuelson and Mattia De Sciglio pushed hard and did great. I saw improvements and right now it’s important to focus on the positives and on what we can continue to make better.”
Seedorf has worked with many great tacticians and was asked whether his man-management style was more Carlo Ancelotti than Fabio Capello.
“At the end of the day, all your Coaches ‘infect’ you with something! I think dialogue with players is very important, as you learn things and they feel part of the project. I love it and I believe they consider it to be positive too.”