AC Milan tell angry shareholders about €89 million losses from last year
AC Milan's minority shareholders gave the club's majority owner Fininvest, led by Silvio Berlusconi, a grilling on Thursday as losses of €89.3 million for the last financial year were reported at the club's Annual General Meeting.
However, there was no news about a reported takeover of the club by Chinese investors.
General manager Adriano Galliani had to bring proceedings to a halt for over an hour and a half to allow him to consult fellow general manager Barbara Berlusconi and prepare answers for angry shareholders.
When he returned to deliver an explanation -- citing mainly UEFA's Financial Fair Play rules, which Milan have not needed to observe for two years as they have not been involved in European club competition, and the extra costs of the Champions League final being staged at the San Siro -- a statement was read out by the minority shareholders, demanding change.
"What has happened over the past five years of dramatic management of our club, of which recent events are emblematic, shows that the club is losing its identity," the statement, later published by tuttomercatoweb.com, said.
"And since it seems evident that Milan are now aiming at international markets to draw in foreign investment from people who need to have faith in us, this is even greater reason for a radical change in management."
Earlier, shareholders Edoardo Boriani, said enough was enough with recent on-field results meaning the club could miss out on Europe for a third year running.
"We're made out to be a competitive team, but the results bring us back to reality," Boriani said.
"There are three or four true Milan players in this squad and the blame is certainly not that of the coaches. We've been the joke of European football for five years, and that joke's no longer funny."
Fellow shareholder Giuseppe Gatti added: "The situation continues to worsen, and I'd never have imagined it reaching this point.
"We cannot say that it was the responsibility of the coaches, [Clarence] Seedorf, [Filippo] Inzaghi and [Sinisa] Mihajlovic. It's the responsibility of the management, from Galliani to Berlusconi.
"We gave [Andrea] Pirlo away to Juve and bought [Alessandro] Matri for €11m. I would have expected Galliani to resign. Milan need a change of generation."
However, as minority shareholders do not make up even one percent of the club ownership, the decision to approve the financial results and confirm the management currently in force was passed by Fininvest's majority.
Il Corriere dello Sport continues to report that Milan is set to change hands, claiming a sale will go through on Monday with the agreement set to be finalised over the weekend while the stock exchanges are closed.