Champions League more important than Serie A - AC Milan president

By Sports Desk September 14, 2018

Doing well in the Champions League is more important than winning Serie A for AC Milan, according to club president Paolo Scaroni. 

Milan have not featured in Europe's elite competition since the 2013-14 campaign, when they only made it as far as the round of 16, bowing out to Atletico Madrid.

Last season they returned to European football when playing in the Europa League – as they will this term – but were eliminated by Arsenal in the last 16.

Milan's struggles in Europe have certainly not been a consequence of domestic success, given they most recently finished in the top three back in 2012-13.

Although fans will surely be eager to see the club win their first league title since 2010-11, Scaroni seemingly values making an impact in the Champions League higher.

"On the sporting level, we won't play in the Champions League this year, even though I think that's where Milan should be," Scaroni told Corriere della Sera.

"I have the idea that, as football has evolved, the Scudetto has become less important. For Milan it would be better to be – and do well – in the Champions League."

Milan have also fallen behind many of their rivals at home and abroad in terms of finances.

That situation annoys Scaroni, who compared Milan to Manchester United, claiming they should at least be on a similar level financially because the Rossoneri have won more than the Premier League club, though in reality the Red Devils have claimed 45 trophies to the Italian side's 43.

"I would like to say that Italy has had problems in many areas in recent years, I do not understand what happened," Scaroni said.

"For 15 years, Milan has not increased revenues. In 2003 we made €200million, in the meantime other clubs have tripled them.

"When I read that Manchester United gets €800m I feel bad, because we have won more than them, and we have an extraordinary basis for success with 400m fans in the world."

Related items

  • Lewandowski one of the best and can lead Bayern to glory - Toni Lewandowski one of the best and can lead Bayern to glory - Toni

    The relentless brilliance of Robert Lewandowski could see Bayern Munich enjoy a very successful season, according to former striker Luca Toni.

    A double in the 4-0 Bundesliga win over Cologne on Saturday took Lewandowski to nine goals in just five league appearances in 2019-20.

    The 31-year-old, who signed a new contract through to 2023 in August, had reached 200 in all competitions for Bayern when he struck in the 3-0 Champions League win over Red Star Belgrade last week.

    Lewandowski's future had been unclear prior to the announcement of his new deal, but Toni now hopes to see the Poland star bring trophies to the Allianz Arena this season.

    "He is one of the best. I like him so much because he lives in the box and scores a lot of goals," Toni told Omnisport.

    "Let's say this: it's really hard to criticise Lewandowski. He is a great player. Sometimes, it happens that he does not score.

    "Team success basically comes through strikers' goals. Here we have a strong striker like Lewandowski and I am pretty sure he can lead Bayern to success."

    Lewandowski's form has helped Bayern to three wins and two draws from their first five league games of the season, putting them two points behind early pace-setters RB Leipzig.

    There are five teams on 10 points, including Borussia Dortmund, leading Toni to hope for stronger competition this term as Bayern go in search of an eighth title in a row.

    "The Bundesliga has to be a challenging league," said Toni, who won the domestic double with Bayern in 2008. "In Italy, Juventus won the Scudetto last year with lots of games to go, and this often happens in Germany with Bayern.

    "I hope for all the Bundesliga and the whole football movement for a very interesting league where three or more teams, maybe an underdog as well, are able to take results against the big teams."

    Similarly, Toni is hoping for a stronger title fight in Serie A this season, with Antonio Conte's Inter and Carlo Ancelotti's Napoli tipped to challenge Juventus' dominance of the top flight.

    "Juventus are the strongest," Toni admitted. "They have basically two teams made of 22 champions. It will be hard [for other teams] but Inter improved the squad in the market and Napoli completed their squad. 

    "It would be great for Italian football if those teams could fight for the Scudetto. They are the best: Inter, Napoli and Juventus."

  • Rumour Has It: Barcelona players losing confidence in Valverde Rumour Has It: Barcelona players losing confidence in Valverde

    Ernesto Valverde is facing a big week at Barcelona.

    Valverde is under pressure early in the season after Barca slumped to a 2-0 loss at Granada to be left with just seven points from their opening five games of the LaLiga season.

    Now, the next week is shaping as crucial for Valverde.

     

    TOP STORY – BARCELONA PLAYERS LOSING CONFIDENCE IN VALVERDE

    Several Barcelona players have started to lose confidence in Valverde, according to ESPN.

    With seven points from five league games, Barcelona have made their worst start to a season since 1994-95.

    Monday's cover of Sport says Valverde needs an urgent reaction, with his side hosting Villarreal on Tuesday and visiting Getafe four days later.

     

    ROUND-UP

    Barcelona are keeping an eye on Napoli midfielder Fabian Ruiz. Barca's sporting director Eric Abidal was present as Fabian scored in Napoli's 4-1 win over Lecce on Saturday, according to Calciomercato.

    AC Milan want to strengthen at right-back and are considering Tottenham defender Serge Aurier, according to Sportmediaset, amid suggestions Andrea Conti is struggling to impress.

    Jose Mourinho has had chances to return to management and the former Real Madrid and Manchester United boss apparently turned down a surprise opportunity last year. Fichajes reports Boca Juniors tried to convince Mourinho to take over, but the Portuguese tactician said he was not yet ready to leave Europe.

    Everton have made a slow start to the Premier League season and are assessing ways to strengthen their attack. The Daily Express reports they are interested in signing Yussuf Poulsen from RB Leipzig. The Denmark international scored 15 Bundesliga goals last season.

  • Ten-man Molynes United stay perfect with win over Arnett Gardens Ten-man Molynes United stay perfect with win over Arnett Gardens

    Newly promoted Molynes United maintained a perfect start to the new Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) after slipping by former champions Arnett Gardens, despite going down to ten men, at the Waterhouse Stadium on Sunday.

    Nicholas Nelson gave the home team the lead in the lead in the 18th minute but was dramatically sent from the pitch only two minutes after.  His ejection left Arnett with a one-man advantage and plenty of time to turn the game around.  The team seemed to be well on their way to doing just that when Vishineul Harris equalised two minutes in the second half.

    The hosts, however, had more surprises as Tyrique Wilson fired them back into the lead in the 65th minute.  To make matters worse for Arnett, they were themselves reduced to ten men when Kimani Arbourine was sent off in the 82nd minute.  The win marked a fourth in a row for Molynes who top the RSPL standings with 12 points.

    At Harbour View Stadium, defending champions Portmore United secured their first win of the season with a 2-1 win over struggling Harbour View. 

    At the Edward Seaga Stadium, Tivoli Gardens snapped a three-game losing streak to start the season when they defeated Cavalier 2-0.  The match seemed to be headed for an even share of the points but the dismissal of Tivoli’s Clifton Woodbine gave the home team added impetus. 

    Rodrico Wellington gave Tivoli the lead six minutes later before Donovan Dawkins secured the home team their first win of the season in the 88th minute.

    At the Royal Lakes Complex, Dean-Andre Thomas scored a brace to ensure Dunbeholden kept the momentum from a narrow win over Portmore United last week, with a 2-0 win over newcomers Vere United.  Thomas scored from the penalty spot in the 40th minute before adding a second in the 83rd.

    At Effortville, Humble Lion and Waterhouse played to a 0-0 draw.

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.