AC Milan striker Alessandro Matri has jumped to the defence of his club's under-fire coach Massimiliano Allegri, saying it is he and his teammates who must lift the Rossoneri out of their gloom.
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The worst start to a season in over 30 years has increased the pressure on Allegri with Milan's aims for the season already looking compromised after only 12 matches. They host Genoa at the league restart following the international break and Matri says they are working hard on a recovery.
"The coach cannot be blamed, it's us players who need to get the results on the field," Matri told Milan Channel. "We're training well and doing some physical tests to bounce back as best we can against Genoa.
"We know we're not doing what we're capable of and we're all really desperate to restart well. We have always trained well, but clearly it's not enough so we need to increase our efforts and take care of the minor details
"Concentrating on the details could help us to start better. We mustn't have any excuses. We've got to be positive and try to get the results on the field."
With only one goal in 10 games so far for Milan since moving to the Rossoneri from Juventus in the summer, Matri need look no further than himself for some reasons for the club's poor start. Signed to provide the goals in the absence of Stephan El Shaarawy and Giampaolo Pazzini, Matri has struggled to fulfil the expectations.
With just four efforts on goal in those games, Matri knows he needs to do better.
"Scoring goals is the most important thing for me," he said. "I just try to satisfy the demands of the coach, but of course scoring is the best medicine to improve self-confidence." The same applies to the team. "We need some positive results because winning helps you win."