Sunday April 14 2013
Allegri: 'I dropped El Shaarawy'

Massimiliano Allegri insists Milan should be content to consolidate third place and explains why he dropped Stephan El Shaarawy in the 1-1 draw with Napoli.

There were many raised eyebrows when the Little Pharaoh was benched for tonight’s game, especially as Mario Balotelli was suspended.

“Nobody can play an entire season at the top level,” argued the Coach. “In the last few rounds he had dipped in psychological terms.

“He is only 20 years old and has already scored many goals, which is precisely why he needs to be dealt with in the best way possible. Those who replaced him did very well tonight. Robinho played a good game and can be of great use to us for the rest of the season, as he is a champion.

“We can improve, as tonight we were missing sharpness, but this season have done so well to complete a great comeback.”

This weekend’s results put Milan four points adrift of Napoli in second and four clear of Fiorentina in fourth.

“Napoli are a side capable of defending second place and this is an important point for us, because we maintain a certain distance from Fiorentina.

“I cannot ask for more from my lads, because we played very well even after going down to 10 men. The game where we got it all wrong was against Fiorentina, but this evening we could not have done any more.

“Football is unpredictable, so we will look over our shoulders, but also in front to Napoli. In any case, third place is a great objective considering how we started the season.”