Mauro Tassotti gives his take on Milan’s downfall as “mistakes were made” and Arrigo Sacchi’s legacy lived on until his “special mentality” evaporated.
When asked about Milan’s fall from grace after their last Scudetto in 2011, former right-back Tassotti put it down to an emergence of “rich clubs”, poor decisions made with the “little” money the Rossoneri had and the retirement of Sacchi’s disciples, although Silvio Berlusconi remained the “greatest”.
“The club no longer spend as much as money and aren’t bold in the transfer market as they were before,” the Ukraine assistant told Sportarena.
“Plus the competition has increased as there were sheikhs and rich clubs like PSG, Manchester City.
“They’re able to spend a lot of money on players, and with them it’s very difficult to compete. It’s hard to be rivals with clubs who spend €150m.
“Of course, mistakes were made in the management of the club, but they were normal.
“You can’t afford to make mistakes when you have only a little money, but it’s impossible [not to].
“Berlusconi is the greatest President in the history of Milan and Italian football. He was there for many years and has a great passion for Milan.
“But in recent years, the situation has been very unclear and no-one knew whether or not the club would be sold.
“The sale is good news as there’s no more of this confusion or misunderstanding of what to expect. In the last transfer window, there wasn’t a lot of signings, but maybe the new owners will buy good players.
“[Sacchi] completely changed Italian football and had the strength to bring in his philosophy. He was a maniac at work.
“Every day, he put an incredible burden on us, destroying us in training. Day after day, it was the same thing.
“He managed to create a team that played by heart. And we not only won, but we also had fun. We liked to play.
“In training, he was very hard, but when we went out on the pitch, it was different. All situations that we worked on in training were easily obtained in the game. It was great.
“Sacchi gave me a lot. The most important thing was that he taught me how to train.
“But it’s not just me. This culture of work remained in Milan for many years. And thanks to Milan, from season 1987-1988 and about until 2009, they remained on top.
“Sacchi brought this mentality, and he passed it onto the players. When Shevchenko joined Milan, he met with Maldini, Costacurta, Albertini, and they worked with Sacchi.
“These were the players with a special mentality, but once this generation passed, the problems started.”
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