The significance of the Udinese match goes beyond Coppa Italia or not, this match is the first chance for this team to forget Sunday and get back on track.
"Of course I don't forget what happens on the pitch. The derby leaves important signals, but we have to think about Udinese in the Coppa Italia tomorrow as this is a chance to get back up," the coach told the press.
"We have already spoken plenty about what happened against Inter, now we are playing against Udinese."
Leonardo remains confident in his side's abilities and feels they can deliver on objectives that have been set by the club.
"We have every reason to stay tranquil as we have done many nice things. We are second in the league and we are still on course in the Champions League and Coppa Italia, therefore the objectives continue.
"There are also many games to go."
Those are words out of Leo, and it is imperative to note that he has learned from Sunday, taken what he can and move on. We can probably speak endlessly about the derby as we have the past few days, but the next step is forward and that is a win against Udinese. A win that may have to come without some of the starters, but a win that needs to pursued and secured nonetheless. While the Coppa may not be on the top of everyone’s wish list, silverware is silverware and I think this team is capable of it without a drastic downfall to the pursuit of a top four finish and a strong CL run. While I never had delusions of a CL victory, a small part of me had scudetto hopes, and while those were also dashed, there is no reason why we can’t press on and have a strong a season in which the Club and fans can build for a stronger future.
The cry to spend spend spend has rung across the board, but the guarded and fiscally responsible approach at the moment seems like the right one, as we watch teams like ManU, Liverpool, and even to some extent Juventus try and right the ship with mixed results and money not well spent. If Milan can continue to promote withing while focusing on depth of the squad, this team will be very well equipped in the near future, with a little bit of patience from the masses.
Playing Udinese will also help in reversing a loss from early in the season and also give more playing time to the fringe players and any returning injured players such as Seedorf and Zambrotta, as well as the return of Abbiati, with Storari being recently shipped out. I would expect Leo to continue with the 4-3-3 as we saw against Novara with Zambrotta filling in for Antonini who is nursing a knock on the head and Seedorf in Pirlo’s advanced role. Part of me wants to see a front line of DiGennaro, KJH, and Verdi (who showed some quick flashes against Novara) with any duo of Rino, Flamini, and Janks as DM’s. CB’s are up for discussion, but at this point playing Albertazzi over Favalli or Kaladze probably wouldn’t be that much of dropoff would it? Would be nice to see Bonera in there as well!
Bottom line no matter who goes on the pitch this game is important, to not only well but to play and return some of the confidence lost in the Derby. A win here gets us a date with Roma and we all know how much fun playing those guys can be.