Claudio Ranieri has claimed Sampdoria “can make life difficult for anyone” but expects a “more complicated game” against Brescia on Sunday.
After starting the year with a point against Milan on their return to action on Monday, the coach was happy to see his players continue in the same way against the Rondinelle.
“The match against Milan gave me some answers and made me confident,” Ranieri said at a press conference. “When we play as a team, we can make life difficult for anyone. We must repeat it against Brescia.
“The environment is extraordinary; the fans are always close to us and I’m sure they will contribute also during this game.”
The Blucerchiati coach expects a different game against Brescia than the goalless draw at San Siro, and said they’re more than just Mario Balotelli.
“We will play a team who arrive in Genoa to win,” he added. “They’re a tough team and have their case verified by the work they have done over a few years.
“Balotelli is a champion, but Sunday’s opponents don’t consist only of him. They’re a team that know how to take advantage of the space. We need to play as a team.
“I know it will be a difficult game. They play football, has quality and determination. This match should be more complicated than the one against Milan. I hope the team has received the messages I sent them.”
The 68-year-old is without a few key members and admitted he can only focus on the players available ahead Sunday's challenge.
“Most of our recent injuries are caused by hits,” he said. “We’ve seen [Alex] Ferrari, [Gaston] Ramirez and [Fabio] Depaoli. These things are part of the game, but it is useless to put a bandage on your head.
“Let’s focus only on the game on Sunday, which is difficult and important.”
The coach said the veteran forward Fabio Quagliarella is “the focal point” to the team and said he was happy to see Manolo Gabbiadini get into “goal-scoring” positions against Milan – despite having spilled a few chances.
“Quagliarella is our focal point, he is fine, and I count on him,” the coach added. “I didn’t say anything to Gabbiadini, it’s important that he gets into those goal-scoring opportunities.
The Norwegian Morten Thorsby gets attention for his work rate in the middle of the park and received praise from the coach after the match against the Rossoneri.
“Thorsby is worthy of praise for his commitment and dedication, but I’m happy with the whole team. They always have a positive attitude.”
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