Wednesday August 21 2013
Montella: 'Grasshopper dangerous'

Vincenzo Montella warned “it will take a great Fiorentina” to get past Grasshopper in tomorrow’s Europa League play-off.

The first leg kicks off in Zurich at 20.00 UK time (19.00 GMT), but David Pizarro is out after picking up a thigh injury on international duty.

“Grasshopper are a very compact side, so it will take a great Fiorentina to turn the game our way,” said the Coach in his Press conference.

“This is a match that could change the planning for our whole season, but that doesn’t mean extra pressure on our shoulders. We worked for this, Grasshopper are a team we fear and it’s probably better that way, as at least we can’t underestimate them.

“I am happy that 3,000 fans are travelling from Florence, as they will certainly make their passion felt and help the team in Zurich.”

Pizarro is out of action, but new buys Mario Gomez, Josip Ilicic, Marcos Alonso, Massimo Ambrosini and Joaquin are there, as well as the fit-again Giuseppe Rossi.

“Pizarro is an important player for us, but there are players of different characteristics who can fill in for him.

“Of course everyone knows how good Gomez is, though he still needs to settle in and the team must get to know him better. Fortunately for us, he can only improve with time.

“Rossi is certainly not at his best in terms of physical fitness, but in football motivation counts for a great deal too. I am really torn on whether to play him from the start. I have to understand what’s in the mind of a player who wants to return after two years out.”

Adem Ljajic has not signed a contract extension yet and rumours of his possible move to Milan continue.

“I see him looking relaxed, even if being young it’s inevitable he could be affected by all this,” added Montella.

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