AC Milan midfielder Riccardo Montolivo has called on his team to continue to make ground on the Serie A leaders.
After a slow start to the season, Milan have been much improved, only losing one of their past seven matches in all competitions after seeing off Crotone in the Coppa Italia midweek.
Milan travel to Carpi on Sunday and Montolivo wants his team-mates to stay focused as they attempt to chase down Napoli and Inter.
Montolivo said: “From now until the half-way stage of the season, we need to put our foot down on the accelerator and make up ground on the sides above us.
“It’s important that we see steady improvements in the team. We have started from scratch this season and it’s normal to encounter a few setbacks, but we’re growing as a team.”
Despite a better run of results, Milan – seventh in the standings – are 10 points behind city rivals Inter.
Speaking to the press ahead of the trip to Carpi, midfielder Nigel de Jong confirmed he has recovered from injury and is ready to be selected by manager Sinisa Mihajlovic.
“The team played well versus Sampdoria and we must keep this going,” De Jong said.
“I don’t want to talk about my future. It’s not easy when you don’t play on a regular basis, but it’s down to the coach. I am a professional and am always available.”