Garcia’s Pre-Milan Press Conference

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Manager Rudi Garcia spoke to the press today on the eve of the Giallorossi’s match in Milan.

(Transcript via Marco Buccino)

There is a 19-point of difference between Roma and Milan…
“Everyone knows that Milan have high-level players, you can not pass the group stage of the Champions League without having a team with strong players.

“We know that playing Milan at home is more difficult. As usual we will go to Milan to win, it will be tough, but it is our ambition.”

Is Totti ready to start from the first minute?
“With Francesco we are stronger, but it is sure that he and Destro are short of full match fitness, we’ll see.

“The interesting thing is that the captain had a whole week of training, so it seems more than fit to help the team give their best, but it is not 100%, of course.

“The good thing is that he has returned to the team, the team is much better with the captain than without him.”

Could winning be the turning point for the championship?
“There are other clubs, Napoli, Inter, Fiorentina. We are still far from the end of the season. We will not think of Juve or others, we think only of our own game.

“We are ready, we had a great match against Fiorentina, but it was only one step, we have to take another step on Monday with a good result in Milan.”

How important is Pjanic’s absence?
“In Bergamo he was forced not to start. We must not think of the absence of Miralem, since he can not play.

“Perhaps with a different player we will be less strong on the technical side but more strong on the physical side, I always think positively, if there is not one, another plays.

“Every time one has come on this team has done well, it is always a matter of the team and not of a player.”

Napoli vs Inter and Milan vs Roma: can this be an important matchday?
“After this game there will be another one for all, we must not think of the last game, but only of this, every game is important but not decisive.

“Psychologically winning against is very important and can help or not at the end.

“Against Milan we want to play our game, and the Rossoneri are a team of talented and good players, I say it again, a team that has reached the knockout stages of the Champions League has talent, but we have ambition.”

Juventus and Napoli playing in the Europa League can be an advantage or a disadvantage for you?
“I do not know if it can be an advantage or a disadvantage, but the problem is theirs.

“Europa League has very strong teams when it goes on, it is not a cup of low-level. I would sign today to win the Europa League in the future and maybe they think so, too.”

Will you think of the bookings?
“I don’t think so, nothing has changed with my choices on the game and on the players who have to play, we should play normally and not think about this thing, when it happens a suspension, just so it happens that another one plays, better not to take three or four suspensions all together.”

What about Berlusconi?
“I do not know him and I can not say anything about him. I’m busy with my team and I did not notice him.

“James Pallotta is important and he is my president. I think that the relationship between coach and president is crucial, for me it’s always been that way.

“We can sometimes do a role play, I can play the one bad then he the kind one and vice versa, but we must have a close relationship especially for the team on a psychological level.”

Benatia, De Rossi and Gervinho said they aim for the Scudetto, why doesn’t Garcia say it?
“We’ll see at the end, I only say that in the end we will have to do a sprint with the favorites who for me are Juventus and Napoli, but why put pressure on the team?

“We want to finish as high as possible, even first, but we are not designed for this thing, then it can happen, we will see, we will do everything to take all the three points, we do not lack ambition, I am perhaps the most ambitious of all.”

Do you expect a tired Milan?
“I do not know, they have had five days between the two matches, but it is true that they played in ten and it is not easy.

“If there is a dip in form we must take advantage of it but I am not sure, they played a good game against Ajax and in ten have played in a really beautiful way, the league is different, we’ll see.”

What about Balotelli and Kaka?
”They’re great players, we all know it. Balotelli can score at any time. I like Kaka, he is a complete player.

“We must do everything in order not to leave spaces to these players, but Milan are not just two of them.

“If we take them one by one they are all strong but it does not change anything for us, we play to win, and hopefully it will be a good game and for us it is good only when we leave with the three points.”