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Under-fire Stefano Pioli respects Milan fan protests

SoccerNews in Serie A 6 May 2024

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Stefano Pioli said he respects the opinions of Milan’s supporters after thousands of fans carried out a silent protest during Sunday’s 3-3 Serie A draw against Genoa at San Siro.

With Milan enduring a second straight trophyless season, trailing champions Inter by 18 points, Pioli has come under pressure amid suggestions the Rossoneri have held talks with former Spain and Real Madrid boss Julen Lopetegui.

Irritated fans unfurled banners demanding improvements to the team during Sunday’s match, while the club’s ultras stayed silent in protest throughout the game.

Fans then left behind a banner which read “the sound of silence” as they filed out en masse from the Curva Sud shortly after Olivier Giroud had put Milan 3-2 ahead in the 75th minute.

By the time Genoa pulled level late in the match, thanks to an own goal by Malick Thiaw, the stand was completely empty.

“The fans have chosen this type of protest and we just need to respect them,” Pioli, whose side have already secured their spot in next season’s Champions League, said.

“Our fans have been an added value in recent years. They will have their reasons if they chose this protest.”

Sunday’s draw also means Milan are winless in their last four league matches.

“The start was poor. We didn’t have the proper concentration and unity in the opening 20 minutes and conceded an early opener,” Pioli said.

“Then, we created many opportunities but also made many errors. It’s a shame we didn’t win because it would have been important for the table.”

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