AC Milan playmaker Giacomo Bonaventura insists his side are capable of being in the top five of Serie A by Christmas despite a disappointing start to the new campaign.
The San Siro side finished 10th last season, a performance which led to the sacking of Filippo Inzaghi as head coach.
Results have not improved early in 2015-16 though, with new boss Sinisa Mihajlovic guiding them to just three wins and 13th place after his first eight league matches despite some significant spending in the off-season transfer market.
But Bonaventura hopes Milan’s form will turn around promptly and does not think a top-five spot by the festive period is an unrealistic aspiration.
“We were upset after the match against Torino because we played well but were not able to win,” the 26-year-old told Gazzetta dello Sport.
“The season is long and we will do well. We have a new coach with a new way of working and time is needed to put things together, but we really believe in Mihajlovic.
“We can only improve. We could be amongst the top five teams by Christmas. We have the quality to put together a string of results that would allow us to do away with our fears and climb up the standings.
“Our squad deserves a better position in the table. We have committed too many errors and we must take our share of the responsibility.
“I don’t think we are weak mentally, but we are coming off a difficult period. Some good results would help cure all our problems.”
Milan, who return to league action with a home game against Sassuolo on Sunday, have a chance to gather some momentum when they face local rivals Inter in the Trofeo Berlusconi exhibition game on Wednesday.
“The Trofeo Berlusconi is important,” added Bonaventura. “We want to win, but the priority is recoup points in the championship.
“The derby with Inter will help us work out different solutions and put them on display.”