10-Man Milan Go Down Despite Being Dominant, Montella Praises Team Spirit
Milan had beaten Juve in the Serie A match in October and again in the Supercoppa Italiana in December.
However, a Paulo Dybala volley and a free-kick from Miralem Pjanic gave Juve a 2 goal lead in the first half an hour of the match.
Carlos Bacca produced a sensational effort to pull one back for the visitor’s.
But Manuel Locatelli’s sending-off trimmed the Rossoneri’s chances even further.
Although, the Diavolo did manage to threaten Juventus even with a man down and were constantly creating chances before just falling short.
Montella was pleased with his team’s showing in the second half, “If we played every game the way we do the last half-hour, we’d win a lot more often,” he told Rai Sport.
“We have shown many times that our strength is we don’t give in. I am satisfied with the lads, we’re on the right track and laying the foundations at the start of this project.”
“Obviously we’re not at Juve’s level yet, but we are on the right track. I don’t think we got the wrong approach this time, but Juventus started very strong indeed, so it’s not quite the same as other games.”
Montella also spoke about Locatelli’s sending-off, “From the bench he seemed to get the ball, but in any case he is 18 years old and will learn from this to dial back some of his vehemence in the tackle.”
“I hope that I am a realist more than an optimist. We earned our place in the quarter-final, come home with a defeat, but the team is picking up a certain mentality and I think we’ll have some positive lessons from this.”