Saturday January 16 2021
Mihajlovic relishes Bologna 'determination'

Sinisa Mihajlovic maintains Bologna ‘rediscovered that determination and desperation to win at all costs’ to beat Verona 1-0 and end their negative streak.

The Rossoblu had been without a win in eight rounds, going back to November 29, but also kept a rare clean sheet.

“I would like to thank Ivan Juric and congratulate him, because he was honest in saying we played better. Not everyone would say that, so he deserves a lot of credit for that honesty,” Mihajlovic told Sky Sport Italia, coming to the cameras just after his colleague.

“We had been struggling in terms of results, but not performances, so we had to keep the performance level up and try to do something more, find that humility to confront our own issues, have more courage on the ball and play free of pressure.

“Above all, we rediscovered that determination, that desperation to win at all costs, which we had when we were fighting against relegation.

“It was a hard-fought game, but I feel we more than matched Verona in their aggression, pressing and hunger, so it was a deserved victory.”

Bologna decided the game with a Riccardo Orsolini penalty, but wasted some other scoring opportunities.

“We need to be more daring, as we get into these situations and need to take the risk of potentially making a mistake, because you need that in football. Sometimes we try to walk the ball into the net and that’s just not possible.”

Musa Barrow was moved to the centre-forward role this afternoon, sending Rodrigo Palacio to the bench.

“We are working with Musa, he is a very intelligent young man who learns quickly. He must attack the space and get into better situations, because he has the goal in his blood. Palacio is a different type of forward, less effective in the finishing, but who creates spaces for his teammates and builds situations.

“I don’t like to talk about individuals, but we are one team with Matias Svanberg and a very different one without him. You give him a messy ball, he’ll clean it up.

“We played without seven or eight first choice players for a couple of months, and that is not easy for anyone, but we still put in the performances and deserved more.”

Mihajlovic is now fully recovered from leukaemia, but never seen without his hat, so friend Billy Costacurta in the studio joked he has become the most stylish coach in Serie A now.

“With all due respect, it’s not hard being the most elegant coach in Serie A… I’d prefer to be the best rather than the most stylish, that’s not much of a compliment! There isn’t much competition!”

Verona goalkeeper Marco Silvestri tried some mind games on Riccardo Orsolini ahead of the penalty, telling him that he’d miss, something that had worked earlier this season on Milan’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

“I’ve missed more penalties in my life than free kicks, so there was no need for that with me,” smiled Mihajlovic.

“I’m just glad we found someone who can take penalties, because we missed the last couple.”