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Champions League race not over for Milan – Mihajlovic

Sinisa Mihajlovic insists AC Milan can still catch the sides above them in the race for Champions League qualification.

Roma’s win against Carpi on Friday has left Milan seven points adrift of the top three but, with Fiorentina and Inter meeting on Sunday, the sixth-placed Rossoneri can close the gap on the sides immediately above them should they defeat Genoa.

Mihajlovic’s side are unbeaten in their last six Serie A matches and the coach is confident they can still qualify for Europe if they marry their improved defending with a better finishing.

“We’re not finishing off the chances we create and we have to stop being wasteful,” he said on Saturday. “We cannot always blame bad luck, but rather, we need to be more ruthless and clinical in front of goal.

“However, I cannot say a bad word against the payers in terms of their performances and commitment, but if we are not always able to win, the fault lies with us.

“Top teams always manage to come away with the win. From the seven matches with Genoa, Atalanta, Bologna, Verona, Empoli, Carpi and Udinese, we picked up just five points from a possible 21.

“I believe we can finish ahead of some of the sides currently ahead of us in the table. To do this we need consistency in our results. Over the course of the season, I feel we will make up ground on the teams above us.”

Milan president Silvio Berlusconi celebrates 30 years in charge at San Siro this month, and Mihajlovic was keen to praise the legacy he has established during that period.

“It’s an incredible achievement. He has been at the helm for 30 years. There is no one like him or who has won as many trophies at home and abroad,” he added.

“The gift we all want to give him is of taking Milan back to where it deserves to be.”

Jeremy Menez is closing in on a return after having being sidelined since August with a back problem, but Mihajlovic is wary of rushing the French forward back into action.

“We’ll use him when I see the right intensity,” he added. “We can’t wait for him to come back, but right now he’s a long way from the best condition.

“He has so much quality and can make a difference, but only if he is physically fit.”

Sat 13 Feb, 2016
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