FRIDAY WITH THE PRESIDENT

MILAN – As is the custom on a Friday before a match, AC Milan and Milanello welcomed the President Silvio Berlusconi.The President arrived at 14.15 by helicopter at the club’s training centre for his 15th visit of the season and head coach Filippo Inzaghi was there to greet him. The President then went over to the club-house where he greeted the players before heading over to the dining area for lunch and to have a photo with the players.Here is an extract of what Berlusconi said to the players: "We have a very cohesive team, an important squad. We have an Italian squad and one of all-stars, we could field an Italian Milan team and a foreign Milan team. We all get on, our coach is very good at acting as the elder brother to everyone. I am sure that with this squad we can qualify for the Champions League next year and we have all the time ahead to be able to do that. It’s a very strong group, very cohesive, very determined."The two chief executives meanwhile, Barbara Berlusconi and Adriano Galliani, arrived at Milanello at around 13.45 and listened in to a presentation by the AC Milan commercial director Jaap Kalma in the "Claudio Lippi" Conference Room.Silvio Berlusconi’s visit had two aims on Friday which were to speak to the players ahead of the match with Napoli on Sunday as well as business meetings with club sponsors as part of the club’s commercial strategies. The President left Milanello at 16.30. After the departure of the President from Milanello, Barbara Berlusconi, Adriano Galliani and Filippo Inzaghi met up with the journalists for an informal Christmas toast. Barbara Berlusconi reminded them of the importance of the Milan brand while Adriano Galliani confirmed the good relationship between the sponsors that support Milan. Both of the chief executives also reminded them, smiling, of the cordiality and collaboration between the two.Here is an extract of what Adriano Galliani said during the Christmas toast: "The President is outstanding. The brand is continuously growing, we have some really important international sponsors. This brand is liked, it’s the one that has won the most in the world. In 2007 we were first in the European rankings, we want to go back to that. It’s clear and obvious that we’re in different times, but not completely different, and there is the desire of the President to keep Milan high up where it deserves to stay. Real Madrid went 32 years without winning a Champions League, but it was always Real Madrid. 28 years ago, after a period of darkness, the President Silvio Berlusconi arrived and took Milan to where it is. Things in 2015 will definitely go well."Barbara Berlusconi: "It was a fun day. We have lots of projects lined-up and new ideas, that we will communicate to you each time over the next 6 months. The coach is working a lot. We think we can continue to grow and reach important milestones. Best wishes to everyone, thanks for your continuous support."