Wednesday October 23 2013
Montella: 'Viola minds on Pandurii'

Vincenzo Montella claims Fiorentina’s poor first half against Juventus was because their “minds were on Pandurii” and the Europa League.

The Viola fought back from 2-0 down to win 4-2 on Sunday and some suggested the Bianconeri were distracted by their upcoming Champions League clash with Real Madrid.

“Perhaps in the first half our minds were on Pandurii,” countered Coach Montella in his Press conference. It kicks off on Thursday at 20.05 UK time (19.05 GMT).

“We changed gear and were perhaps more clinical than we have ever been. I hope that it wasn’t the only great success of the season, that it will bring enthusiasm and confidence rather than making us feel sated, because we’ve got another big game tomorrow.

“We care a great deal about the Europa League and can secure our qualification tomorrow. Giuseppe Rossi needs to have his efforts balanced out, though, as next week we have even tougher matches.

“Pandurii are a team who play better away from home, as that is how they qualified for the Europa League. They are very balanced and organised, though perhaps without individuals who stand out. We cannot underestimate any opponent.

“I will field the side that I consider to be the best, thinking only of tomorrow’s game. We achieved something extraordinary, so will need to be concentrated and motivated tomorrow.”

Montella was also asked about Juventus showing interest in Juan Guillermo Cuadrado.

“He needs to improve on a few things, but can go all the way up the flank. That’s why Juventus wanted him so much.”