With a good start to 2018 -Gennaro Gattuso, has been the real difference maker for this team.
After the win over Lazio this past weekend, Gattuso invited the Milan players he now manages to form a circle around him at the San Siro on Sunday, and asked them to land punches on him.
It was a weird scene, some of the Milan players, jubilant from the 2-1 win over Lazio, did give their boss a slap, playfully of course.
“It was mainly for the players I left on the bench, so they could express their anger with me,” Gattuso explained of his new peculiar technique.
It is much too early to declare Gattuso. the manager, a success story in his first attempt at coaching in Serie A, but January has been an excellent month for Rino.
Milan take on Lazio again on Wednesday night in the first leg of their Coppa Italia semi-final.
They do so on the heels of three massive league wins in a row that have helped uplift the club from the bottom half of the table to seventh position, into the scene for European qualifying.
This is at best the minimum spot this Milan team should finish and with a manager with such big game experience including two Champions League titles, the sky is the limit.
Gattuso has really lit a fire under this team, and it shows. The players play with an intensity and aggressiveness akin to their manager’s playing days. Of course, that is not all, the development of key young players like Franck Kessie, Patrick Cutrone and David Calabria along with the veterans like Giacomo Bonaventura and Leanordo Bonucci rediscovering their form has Milan clicking at the start of the second half of Serie A.
Gattuso commented on expectations for this team giving the amount spent after Sunday’s win, “What I don’t want is that the story of every match is taken as some sort of watershed,” Gattuso said. “Each game is a challenge in itself. The club have spent a lot of money and we have been through some problems. But I’m pleased for the players because they are strong psychologically at the moment.”
To think, this all started with the training during Christmas break when most teams are off, that Rino really teared into this team for lack of love for the team leading to poor results. That is why he sees this team being so strong psychologically.
The tough love has paid off and now maybe Milan can rediscover the form to at minimum enter European competitions again or at the best be a noisy player in the Scudetto race.
Gattuso is the real difference maker!