Stefano Pioli demands Milan improvement against Inter in Cup

Pioli demands a reaction from AC Milan against Inter in the Coppa Italia after spending a sleepless night reviewing its weekend defeat by Atalanta.

Stefano Pioli...“The desire is to return to the pitch with a positive performance. This is a competition that we care about, we’ll do everything to go all the way.” - REUTERS

AC Milan coach Stefano Pioli has demanded a reaction from his team against Inter Milan in the Coppa Italia after spending a sleepless night reviewing its weekend defeat by Atalanta. Milan suffered its heaviest defeat of the season when it was thrashed 3-0 by the Bergamo club at San Siro on Saturday, but remains two points clear of Inter at the top of Serie A.

Pioli has had little time to assess the performance ahead of Tuesday’s quarterfinal meeting, which will serve as a dress rehearsal for the crucial Milan derby league clash on February 21.

“The next derby is in a month, with other important games before then, so this is just a Coppa Italia match, an important quarterfinal that we’re looking to face in the best way possible,” Pioli told Milan TV on Monday.

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“The desire is to return to the pitch with a positive performance. This is a competition that we care about, we’ll do everything to go all the way.”

Milan put in one of its worst performances of the season at home to Atalanta as it was outplayed by the visiting team in its second league defeat of the season.

“I didn’t sleep because I re-watched the match,” he said.

“In my job it’s important to communicate to the squad the next day. I sleep little after games, both wins and defeats, because I think knowing what to say to the team is the most important thing. We don’t have much time and we’re playing a lot, so the communication needs to be immediate.”