Gian Piero Gasperini said Atalanta will be ‘even stronger’ in the future and works hard to ‘improve’ the current squad. ‘The ideas are very clear’.
La Dea have established themselves among the top teams in Italy under Gasperini and the 63-year-old hopes to take advantage of the growth both ‘economically and in experience’.
“I feel at home here,” the coach told L’Eco di Bergamo. “In the future I can see an even stronger Atalanta.
“Absolutely. Two years of the Champions League has improved us technically and mentally. The club has grown economically and in experience.
“The Percassi have become even better and stronger. Among the competitors I see economic issues, while we have a very strong budget. N ow, it’s a question of exploiting this advantage.”
The Orobici coach revealed he was happy with how the team dealt with the transfer market and the idea is to always plan ahead.
“There’s a solid core in the team, and there’s the possibility to improve through programming,” Gasperini added. “Last minute arrivals aren’t needed.
“The right operations were [Cristian] Romero and [Joakim] Maehle, and [Matteo] Pessina.
“I’m relatively satisfied [with the transfer market]. But compared to last season, we are certainly ahead. The ideas are very clear.
“Let’s say that the ideas are on the table. I no longer want to hear that ‘it’s difficult to improve’, because everything can be improved.
“We need players who are ready, maybe who knows the championship. And there’s no confusion.”
Gasperini highlights his Atalanta side have taken one step at a time since his appointment.
“Let’s think about our size,” he said. “We played for safety, then to stay in the top 10, now we are up there with the big players.
“Perhaps only Inter and Juve have something more, we are competing with the others. Then maybe Milan and Napoli spend €100m and move away, but you can think of staying with these teams.
“We are intruders, yes, due to our dimensions. But you have to move in advance. There’s everything to be able to do so and I must say that this year we are already planning and moving forward.
The controversy around Gasperini and former captain Papu Gomez was a hot topic ahead of Christmas and the Argentine eventually moved to Sevilla.
“In the autumn, after a great start, the two international breaks caused serious damage,” Gasperini pointed out. “Our solidity was no longer there.
“The team was almost broken, it had little dynamism, there was no balance. That was no longer my team, I didn’t like it anymore.
“It was of course not only due to the presence of Gomez, but it was also for a number of reasons. I had to run fo cover, because the team didn’t convince me tactically, mentally and with their personality. Then what happened, happened.”
Gasperini said Atalanta always aim for a return to the Champions League but are also preparing for a Coppa Italia Final against Juventus in May.
“All in! Atalanta play for everything,” Gasperini said. “But I prefer to return to the Champions League.
“Inter are gone, Milan are four points clear and there aren’t few contenders.
“Juve are there, Napoli are now credited, the two teams from Rome are dangerous. And we are there, among so many.”