Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says AC Milan must keep their faith in Massimiliano Allegri despite the club's disappointing start to the season. The Rossoneri have taken only seven points from as many games and sit 11th in the Serie A table at present, but while the 45-year-old has received his fair share of criticism for the side's poor results, the Frenchman believes a change would be wrong. "It is clear for all to see that things are not going well at Milan. However, it is crucial that they retain their faith in Allegri," Wenger told Eurosport. "It is only normal that he needs time to rebuild the team after the departure of players like Thiago Silva and Zlatan Ibrahimovic. "The two Milan teams appear to be less strong than we've come to get used to in recent years, but that's down to the economic crisis." Milan resume league action on Saturday, when they travel to Lazio.
Marcello Lippi has defended Milan boss Massimiliano Allegri from criticism amidst rumours that he could be axed. Allegri’s long-term future has been brought into question following the club’s recent exit from the Coppa Italia and Champions League. "I don’t understand how in Italy one day you can be the best and the next you can be sacked," the 2006 World Cup winner wrote in his Gazzetta dello Sport column. "For a year and a half Allegri has gained great results and they have not been achieved by chance," the former Juventus tactician underlined. "Allegri has overseen this cycle as a true leader. "Milan didn’t pick him by luck, he’s part of a series of young winners – like Arrigo Sacchi, Fabio Capello, Carlo Ancelotti – who, with great motivation and tactical innovations, have constructed the recent history of this club. "If today Juventus are winning the plaudits, I don’t think that it is right that Max and his players deserve criticism. Especially the Coach." There were suggestions that club owner Silvio Berlusconi is pondering a change of tactician in the summer because he wants to see a different brand of football. Allegri, a former midfielder, joined the San Siro outfit in the summer of 2010 and immediately led the team to the Scudetto. Milan are just one point behind Serie A leaders Juventus with six games to go.
The agent of AC Milan forward Stephan El Shaarawy has sought to distance his client from rumours linking him with a move to Arsenal. The 19-year-old is considered to be a hot prospect for the future and Milan beat a number of clubs to his signature when snapping him up from Genoa last summer. He has been eased into the senior fold at the San Siro, with Milan reluctant to ask too much of him too soon. El Shaarawy has impressed when called upon, though, and made his UEFA Champions League debut in a meeting with Arsenal at Emirates Stadium on 6th March. It is now being suggested that he could be on his way back to North London when the transfer window re-opens. Settled Arsene Wenger is known to be an admirer of the talented teenager and is believed to have mulled over an approach prior to his switch to Milan. El Shaarawy's agent is aware of the speculation linking his man with the Gunners, but insists there is no substance to the reports. "Arsenal were watching him before his arrival in Milan," said Roberto La Florio. "But the Rossoneri have signed him and will not be letting him go. He would also be happy to stay at Milan."
Thiago Silva can walk normally. We risked him today, and unfortunately it went like this and he got injured. It will be very difficult to get Thiago Silva ready for Barça. Almost impossible.Looks like we'll have to wait until tomorrow for an official press release, but for now, not good news. h/t to @Milanello