Montella expecting tough test at Sassuolo

Vincenzo Montella called for Fiorentina to ensure they are fully focused on Wednesday’s trip to Sassuolo as he appeared at a pre-match press conference to preview the Week 10 clash on Tuesday.

“We need to look ahead and not behind,” said Montella. “We have a tough game against a side that is proving itself to be more pragmatic than last season. They have some players in attack that are as good as most in the league: [Domenico] Berardi, [Gregoire] Defrel, [Francesco] Caputo, [Filip] Djuricic and [Jeremie] Boga. They have some very good players in midfield too in [Pedro] Obiang and [Alfred] Duncan. [Manuel] Locatelli is a very good young player in my eyes too. We need to put everything else to one side and show the mental strength to get back to the form we were showing before.”

Montella was pressed on whether or not he will rotate his team at Mapei Stadium, with Federico Chiesa put to the Viola boss as one player he might rest.
“Chiesa was tired but I think he’s one of the top players in terms of fitness,” he said. “He is able to play three games in a week because he recovers quickly. When you play twice or three times a week, it’s a whole different sport. I’ll probably make a few changes in midfield, but I won’t say anything more than that.”
Montella went on to discuss his other options in attack, with Franck Ribery suspended after his red card after the final whistle against Lazio.
“[Dusan] Vlahovic is certainly in better shape than Pedro, but he is a young lad and still needs to work on his game management,” said Montella. “[Kevin-Prince] Boateng gives us more certainties in terms of participation and his reading of the game.”
The Fiorentina coach also addressed the situation with Ribery, who took to social media to apologise following his actions during the Lazio game.
“I’ve had a very good relationship with Franck from day one and indeed before he arrived,” said Montella. “We cleared things up yesterday, I explained my reasons and he acknowledged that he crossed a line. It happens. He’s come to Fiorentina to test himself – he could have gone to Asia where he had much more lucrative offers, because he’s still a top player in his head. He chose to come to a competitive league, to Fiorentina, because he believes he’s still a top player. We’re benefitting from that but I have to make objective decisions during a game and that includes managing a top player of 36 years of age who never holds anything back.”

Published: Tue, 29 Oct 2019 14:59:00 +0100

Source: Fiorentina Official website