AC Milan faced Bologna in a thrilling encounter that ended in a 2-2 draw, leaving manager Stefano Pioli with mixed emotions about the team’s performance. Despite Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s late equalizer, Milan missed two penalties, and Pioli emphasized the defensive lapses that allowed Bologna to make a comeback.
The Rossoneri entered the game on the back of four consecutive victories, aiming to extend their winning streak to five. However, the match took an unexpected turn as Bologna fought back, and both teams settled for a 2-2 draw.
Pioli, speaking to Sky Italia after the game, expressed regret over the missed opportunities and the defensive lapses that impacted the result. He stressed the importance of maintaining focus in the defensive phase, citing an instance with a penalty.
Reflecting on the match, Pioli said, “We leave with the regret of not having won the match. It’s true that we missed two penalties, but we also had many opportunities to score. Then, it must also be said that we conceded some to an excellent Bologna. This must teach us that you cannot lose attention in the defensive phase, as we saw with the penalty.”
Despite a commendable performance, Pioli acknowledged the need for improvement and emphasized the importance of aligning performances with results. He commented on the missed penalties by stating, “It’s clear that Giroud and Theo are excellent penalty-takers. Unfortunately, tonight wasn’t their night.”
Regarding the team’s position in the standings, Pioli mentioned, “We look at ourselves and clearly, we are not happy. There were many things in a hypothetical victory. It was a difficult match in which we played and recovered. There are many positive things but we showed that we still have to grow in other aspects.”
Pioli also addressed the issue of comebacks conceded, stating, “Matches don’t end in the 92nd or 95th minute. This will be a new lesson for our future.”
On Bologna’s player Zirkzee, Pioli had high praise: “He’s a great player. I’ve followed him since his days at Bayern Munich and then at my Parma. A fantastic player, with physicality and quality. He has everything. He’s doing very well at Bologna.”
Pioli concluded by shedding light on Leao’s words after the substitution: “He’s the one who told me that he’ll take the next penalty. In training he doesn’t score many but maybe in the match… When he ended up on the right, it was because he had cut towards the goal and he found himself there.”