Fiorentina coach Beppe Iachini says the “glass is half-full” despite recent results, and that he is relishing the battle against "maestro" Claudio Ranieri.
The Viola travel to Genoa to face Sampdoria, the game kicks off today at 14:00 GMT. You can read the match preview here.
Iachini’s side have lost their last three consecutive games in all competitions, but he prefers to be optimistic over their situation.
“We have to look at the glass half full, for the work we’ve been doing. I’ve been here for 40 days, and I can only see this group grow,” said Iachini in his press conference.
“We have room for improvement, for three weeks we had three games per week. We need to improve our quality during the game, as so far we do so in waves.
“However I am content, we are recovering players from a physical and mental point of view, above all Federico Chiesa.”
Iachini then revealed that Alfred Duncan could make his debut for the Viola following his January signing from Sassuolo.
“Duncan has recovered, he has been called up and could play. Milan Badelj and Martin Caceres are good, we are recovering many of the lads.”
Iachini says he is looking forward to going up against Claudio Ranieri
“Ranieri is a maestro for me. I consider him a great coach. In the past we worked together, I was his captain.
“If he gives you the armband, it means he has recognised your skills. There is great esteem for him, and I will try to do the best with my team.”
Iachini says it’s still too early to judge his Fiorentina side.
“I look at my work with balance. To give an example, I read an interview with Leonardo Bonucci who explained that after seven-and-a-half months with Maurizio Sarri at Juventus they still have to understand some of his requests, imagine us after 40 days.
“However that doesn’t have to be used as an alibi. We have to speed things up, the lads need to understand what I want.”
Fiorentina have a mixed squad of experienced players and youngsters, and Iachini likes it that way.
“I like to work with a mix of the two. We have experienced forwards, but unfortunately Franck Ribery is absent due to injury.
“This is why we have to work with our younger players, so that they can become great champions in as little time as possible.”
Watch Serie A live in the UK on Premier Sports for just £11.99 per month including live LaLiga, Eredivisie, Scottish Cup Football and more. Visit: https://subscribe.premiersports.tv/