Vincenzo Montella is happy to work under greater scrutiny at AC Milan, accepting that “expectations have been raised” by his exciting side.
Featuring young stars such as Gianluigi Donnarumma, Alessio Romagnoli and Manuel Locatelli, the Rossoneri have muscled their way into the title picture, the highlight being the 1-0 defeat of Juventus last weekend.
However, Montella’s men were brought back down to earth with a bump after beating the champions, going down 3-0 at Genoa – a heavy defeat capped by Gabriel Paletta’s ludicrous two-footed lunge that resulted in a sending-off.
Struggling Pescara are next up for Milan on Sunday and Montella says his players are keen to atone for their midweek horror show.
“We are eager to get back on the pitch and prove ourselves,” Montella said.
“Expectations have been raised and that is something to be proud of. Perhaps there was more tension when we were preparing for the Sampdoria game with two defeats behind us.
“I knew Genoa was going to be difficult, but did not expect to lose, especially like that.”
Pescara have just one win to their name so far this season, awarded to them after Sassuolo fielded an ineligible player, but Montella is not taking them lightly.
“Frankly I have seen many Pescara games, they play excellent football and are very good at playing between the lines,” he said. “It’s a team that must be faced with the right level of concentration. It’s a delicate match.
“It would be a mistake for us to go into this game already thinking of the next test. We must take it one game at a time and focus entirely on Pescara.
“I think Milan’s strength this season has been in the players who came off the bench, as they always gave us something extra. Gianluca Lapadula is one of them. The strength of a team is valued on these issues.
“I hope Gabriel Paletta won’t be too sorely missed during his ban. Giancarlo Gomez is adapting to our style of football and understanding the movements that are completely different from in South America.”