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Gattuso warns AC Milan must suffer

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Gattuso warns AC Milan must suffer

Gattuso warns AC Milan must suffer

FABRICE COFFRINI

AFP

New AC Milan coach Gennaro Gattuso warned on Tuesday that the former Italian giants must suffer if they want to return to their glory days.

New AC Milan coach Gennaro Gattuso warned on Tuesday that the former Italian giants must suffer if they want to return to their glory days.

Gattuso, a key figure in some of Milan's best ever teams, took over as coach on Monday after Vincenzo Montella was sacked following a disappointing start to the season.

The seven-time European champions, once the world's best team but now way behind their traditional Serie A rivals, released Montella after a goalless draw against Torino left them seventh in Serie A, 18 points behind leaders Napoli.

Former Italian player and former captain of the Swiss football club FC Sion Gennaro Gattuso during a press conference in Sion.

Former Italian player and former captain of the Swiss football club FC Sion Gennaro Gattuso during a press conference in Sion.

Gattuso asks if Milan are willing to suffer

"It's an important day, a big responsibility," said 39-year-old Gattuso, who was promoted from coach of Milan's youth team.

"We need to prove that we're willing to suffer and be a united squad. We'll need a battlefield spirit.

"It's going to be a tough job, this team has 16 nationalities and an average age of 21. They're not having an easy time, but everything is in place to work well."

AC Milan have not finished higher than sixth in Serie A in any of the last four seasons.

New Chinese owner Li Yonghong funded a €230 million spending spree in the summer, but it has failed to produce immediate results and Milan lie seventh in Serie A.

Since retiring as a player in 2013, Gattuso has enjoyed mixed fortunes as coach, with short stints at Sion in Switzerland, at Palermo and Pisa in Italy and at Greek minnows OFI Crete before joining the Milan youth setup in May.

Gattuso admits it's up to him to get results

"I've over 100 matches behind me in different championships," insisted Gattuso, defending his credentials. "It's up to me now to get results."

"I feel the same emotions as I did when I was a player, when I come to Milanello it's like I'm in heaven," he continued.

"Right now I'm not looking at the table, I'll take it day-by-day. The match against Benevento (Sunday) has to be like a World Cup final."

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