The former Italian defender and the current Milan's head coach believes that Milan could have won the game against Verona.
to be prepared against the challenges of playing in the Europa League. However, the Rossoneri's fightback by drawing 2-2 againstVerona
is reassured, just a few days after the Rossoneri's first defeat since March, 3-0 toLille
in the Europa League.
"We knew that playing in the Europa League and straight after against opponents likeUdinese
and Verona takes a lot out of you," the coach said.
"They can prepare all week for this match, whereas we have one mini-training session. We want to improve the position we had last season and go as far as possible in Europe.”
When Verona took a 2-0 lead,Franck Kessie
scored for Milan and changed the result to 2-1.
missed his third consecutive penalty, he was able to put the ball in the back of the net as the equalizer.
"Zlatan told me he was disappointed because we could've won the game, that he'll leave the next penalty for Kessie and that he needs this break to rest. That's true of everyone, really, but we fought to get into Europe and this is what it means."
Verona gained both scores from dead-ball situations, and Pioli believes there is a problem.
"We conceded five goals between Roma and Verona from set plays and that means we need to be more focused. On the other hand, we had 25 shots on goal, created 10 chances, so the performance was there, and their goalkeeper denied us a win we may well have deserved.
"Verona deserve credit for their very intense, physical approach to the game, while we played the game we had to and that led to 20 shots on goal. We had the chances to win and it's a pity we didn't manage it.
"We were coming off our first defeat in many months and tonight almost immediately went 2-0 down. We reacted, we showed that we are a strong team and that we have character.
"The problem is, there are other strong teams in Italy and Europe, such as Juventus, Inter and Napoli, while there's a real fight with many others such as Lazio, Roma and even Sassuolo. I have some strong lads, but we are the youngest team in the league and that doesn't stop us being mature lads too."