Friday April 6 2012
Allegri: Forget Europe, win Serie A

Max Allegri is keen for Milan to move on from their European exit in midweek by ensuring that they win the Scudetto this season.

The Rossoneri were knocked out of the Champions League in midweek after defeat to Barcelona, but they go into the final eight weeks of the Serie A campaign still two points ahead of Juventus, an advantage that Allegri believes the team must hold on to.

“We must forget the elimination from the Champions League,” the Coach asserted to the assembled media on Friday.

“We need to think about the points and winning games, starting tomorrow, which will not be easy despite the difficult period Fiorentina are in.

“We feel as we did last year when we had Inter and Napoli two and three points behind us. We must remain calm, we have 64 points and nobody has gifted them to us.

“It will be a fascinating battle to the end and we have an obligation, even without the head-to-head record to get to the finish a point ahead of Juventus, and so we start from tomorrow.”

Antonio Conte reportedly told his Juventus players in a midweek address that Milan ‘will have to spit blood’ to win the League title.

“We’d have to get beaten in order to spit blood,” reacted Allegri. “It’s always a game of football and we will try to win with technique and with determination after an important season in which we also had to make a comeback in. It won’t be easy because Juve is going strong.”

The season run-in will be without Alexandre Pato, however, after he was ruled out for the rest of campaign with another muscle injury sustained just 13 minutes into his comeback in midweek.

“I saw him again this morning, he is being treated and is trying to return as soon as possible. We are all sorry for these injuries, he is a boy of 22.

“However, I always want to see things positively and I think that a bit of tranquillity, with some re-education and a little more attention, will definitely return Pato to the strength of a few years ago.”

Allegri could welcome Antonio Cassano back to the first team, after he was given the all clear to resume his playing career this week.

“Antonio is fine physically, of course for what he can be in his condition. He has so much class and this can compensate for a lack of shape.

“Will he be picked tomorrow? I will decide after [training], but there is a good chance he will be called up and on the bench.”

The Coach was also pressed for a reaction to how the fixture calendar has now presented Milan with a slight advantage of playing before Juventus in each of the next four rounds of games.

“The League is a competent body and I think they will make the right choice for fairness and balance at the end of the season so no team has an advantage or disadvantage.

“The championship will be very open towards the end and I think that the League thinks this too, in trying to avoid controversy.”