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Jan 23, 2014

Seedorf: I'm not a miracle worker

Clarence Seedorf said he "can't perform miracles" after his AC Milan side were knocked out of the Coppa Italia on Wednesday night.

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Despite taking an early lead through Mario Balotelli, Milan succumbed 2-1 to Udinese at the San Siro, falling to their first defeat since Seedorf took charge last week.

The Rossoneri’s hopes of playing in Europe next season now rely on a rise up the Serie A table or an unlikely Champions League triumph.

"Sadly, we're not yet playing with any consistency, the way we want to be," Seedorf told RAI television. "But I saw some interesting things today and I told my lads to remain serene. I can't perform miracles."

Mario Balotelli and Kaka AC Milan woe vs Udinese
Mario Balotelli and Kaka could not inspire Milan to victory in the Coppa Italia.

Seedorf inherited a side low on morale and a last-gasp 1-0 win over Hellas Verona in the league on Sunday night failed to mask the shortcomings of Milan, who are 30 points off the pace in Serie A.

The gap to the top five is seven points and the club's priority is now to reduce that.

"We wanted to go all the way in the Coppa Italia and we're sorry because we could have done without a game like this," Kaka said. "We're a long way off Europe in the league and the Cup would have been the quickest route there. We had this game at home and so it seemed the road was downhill all the way, but we've not done well."

The Champions League could also provide a route back into Europe for the Rossoneri. They face Atletico Madrid in the last 16 and, while not regarded as one of the favourites to reach the Lisbon final, Milan have played arguably their best football this season in Europe.

"Now we've all got to reflect on this and ask ourselves what we can give as a team," added Kaka, who lifted the Champions League with Milan in 2007. "We need to find the motivation to do well in the Champions League and in the league. We always find motivation when we're playing in Europe and we've got to work hard and hope we can go through."

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