Carlo Ancelotti has called on AC Milan to show patience with Sinisa Mihajlovic despite a poor start to the season.
Mihajlovic is reportedly on the verge of being relieved of his duties just over four months after taking over from Filippo Inzaghi.
Milan are 13th in Serie A with just 10 points to their name, trailing leaders Fiorentina by eight points.
Yet Ancelotti, who won Serie A in 2004 and the Champions League twice in a eight-year spell in charge of Milan, told Gazetta dello Sport: “It requires patience, as there were so many changes and it takes time to settle everything down.
“The club invested a great deal and expected to start stronger, which is why Mihajlovic is now under pressure.
“I know only one medicine to heal this problem: hard work. Milan have quality from the midfield up, so should find a system that makes the most of their players’ characteristics.
“With Riccardo Montolivo, Juraj Kucka and Andrea Bertolacci, they must try to keep possession and with Carlos Bacca finish chances.
“Of course, Mihajlovic already knows all of this perfectly well.”
Ancelotti is out of work after being sacked by Real Madrid in May and refused to rule out a potential return to Milan.
“I’ll return to football next season, if someone wants me,” he added. “It would definitely be for a club, as I love to work every day on the field and have contact with the players, so no to a national [team] bench.
“I’ll be honest, if I did come back to Italy it would only be for Milan. Well, and Roma… In any case, I am above all thinking of going abroad now.
“I was very close to Milan this summer, but I wanted to take a sabbatical.”