Davide Astori is still with us – Stefano Pioli declares

first_imgHead coach of Italian football club Fiorentina, Stefano Pioli, has set his sight on Europe and the Coppa Italia, as he reveals the bond between the club and former captain Davide Astori who died in his sleep in March.Even though the Viola comes as a surprise package of the season so far in Serie A, they could battle for a top-four finish.“I would very much like to qualify for Europe, but it won’t be easy. I think it’s clear to all that there are teams better equipped out there, but we’re ready to take advantage of any slip-ups,” said the Coach at a Q&A with La Repubblica newspaper via Football Italia.“At this moment, I see a Fiorentina side that is ambitious, but not winning yet. There is a step between ambition and victory that we still need to cover. The Coppa Italia cannot be considered a secondary objective and it’s only right to target going all the way.”“Astori and Milan Badelj were my reference points in the locker room. The team had changed so much that summer and I leaned on them for support, as everyone did with Davide.“What happened was a shock and it pushed me to appreciate my players even more on a human level. What Vitor Hugo said recently is the truth: Davide is still with us.Cristiano Ronaldo, JuventusSerie A Betting: Match-day 3 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Considering there is a number of perfect starts so early in the Serie A season, as well as a few surprisingly not-so perfect ones….“The lads who were here last season have done so well to pass that situation on to the new arrivals. We are a team with an extra reason to do well.“These lads were so strong and united in their grief. I simply told them to carry on what we had started with Astori. I always did get very fond of my players, but even more so with this group. I think what happened united us even more and made us feel stronger.”Meanwhile, when Cristiano Biraghi scored his debut Italy goal in the Nations League victory over Poland, he took his fingers high and formed the figure 13  which we think symbolises Astori’s number.“I was so proud of him after that goal, for the work we’d done together and his great desire to improve. Biraghi was always aware of his weaknesses and is one of those players I feel that as a Coach I can really help to grow stronger.“Federico Chiesa has a great chance of pace, can shoot with his right or left foot, and is approaching a level that will make him a complete player.”last_img

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