Saturday May 6 2017
Montella: 'Roma easier than Empoli'

Vincenzo Montella admits Milan find it “easier to prepare” for Roma and Atalanta than Empoli or Crotone, as he takes on his past.

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“Roma and Atalanta are actually easier games to prepare for players, because they bring more motivation. We need to get more points than we did in the reverse fixtures,” the Coach told Milan TV.

The Rossoneri have stuttered recently, held by Pescara and Crotone with a shock home defeat to Empoli.

“Roma represent one of the most important steps towards European qualification, although the head-to-head with Atalanta next week might be even tougher.

“Even if we are coming off two terrible results, I am sure the fans will be close to us with the same affection they’ve shown throughout the campaign. We need everyone.

“I have generally decided the starting XI, but tomorrow the mentality will be fundamental. I am concentrated more on that, creating a mentality in the entire squad, even those who aren’t playing.

“We care a great deal about getting into Europe, but in my experience the first few rounds of the Europa League are below the level of Serie A difficulty, whereas in the second half of the tournament it’s closer to the Champions League.”

Montella has a lot of history with Roma, as he was both a player here and a Coach.

“I am very fond of Rome, as my children were born there. It’s a place that wins you over. It’s a pleasure to face them tomorrow, as my past is there.

“Both sides need to win in order to achieve the objectives that, in my view, we deserve.”

Francesco Totti is due to retire at the end of the season, or at least that’s the official club line so far.

“I don’t know if it’ll be his last Milan-Roma. He could have some surprises in store,” smiled Montella.

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