Saturday November 30 2019
Gasperini: 'Wasted Atalanta chances'

Gian Piero Gasperini felt Atalanta could’ve beaten Brescia by far more than 3-0. “We wasted a lot of chances and didn’t kill the game.”

This was only the second ever Atalanta Serie A victory away to their rivals Brescia, after three draws and seven defeats. The other success was also 3-0, in March 2001.

It did end the Orobici’s month-long wait for a domestic win, just days after sweeping Dinamo Zagreb aside 2-0 in the Champions League.

“We did very well in the first half and dominated, but there was some fatigue and we wasted a lot of chances. As time wore on, it got more difficult, but fortunately the second goal locked down the result,” Gasperini told Sky Sport Italia.

“Some players were struggling and had to scrape the bottom of the barrel for the remaining energy to get this done. Our tempo was a little slower than usual, so I shouted a bit more to wake them up.

“It’s dangerous in these games when you dominate and don’t kill it off, so we had to be on our toes to avoid any nasty surprises.”

Mario Pasalic bagged a brace with his header at the back post and back-heel flick, before Josip Ilicic’s stoppage-time counter-attack.

“Pasalic has this extraordinary ability to time his run and ghost behind defenders to get into scoring positions. He has scored several goals this season and has become very reliable as a midfielder too, as last season he had more difficulty, but is now absolutely reliable for us.”

The tempo dropped in the second half, as Atalanta were tired after a 2-0 win over Dinamo Zagreb.

“I maintain the Champions League has helped us rather than been a hindrance this season. We were up against teams accustomed to being the protagonists in their own country, so they are all very attack-minded and play at a high tempo.

“By facing these top teams, we are more tired, but we are training at a higher level and getting used to it.”

Gasperini’s former midfielder, Thiago Motta, is now working as a coach at Genoa.

“I have a lot of faith in Thiago. He plays in a completely different style to the one we had at Genoa, but some characteristics are very similar. He took the game to Napoli and Juventus on their own turf, so Thiago has everything it takes to be a fine coach.”

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