Sunday September 1 2019
Gasp admits Skrtel 'difficulties'

Atalanta boss Gian Piero Gasperini has confessed that Martin Skrtel did not play against Torino because ‘he expressed difficulty playing in a back three.’

Atalanta fell to their first defeat of the 2019-20 Serie A campaign on Sunday evening, throwing away a two-goal lead to lose 3-2 to Torino, and Gasperini was concerned about his side’s defensive frailties.

“We threw the game away,” he told DAZN after the game.

“We conceded some big goals, which influenced the result. The team created so much but, if we concede goals like the ones we have, constantly from set pieces, it’ll have become our weak point.

“The result of one game mustn’t take momentum and strength away from this team.

“Conceding big goals involves everyone. Every team need a bedding-in period, including us.

“When we went ahead, we were unable to hold on to our lead. It was a strange match for that reason.

“They had one noteworthy chance at the start of the game, whereas we had many. We did well and didn’t suffer so much.

“It’s an odd result, but it doesn’t detract from our situation.”

Skrtel was left out of the matchday squad entirely, amidst reports he could already be on his way out of Bergamo... 

“There’s only one day left of the transfer window, but I don’t know what’ll happen,” admitted the Coach.

“Skrtel was among those who could play tonight but, probably due to his age, he expressed difficulty playing in a back three.

“He was very honest about it, so I made my decision. It was probably more difficult for him to catch on to our style of play, which is understandable.”

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