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May 10, 2010

No Milan return for Van Basten

Marco van Basten has ruled himself out of the running to take charge of AC Milan next season.

Van Basten happy with Milan link

While there has yet to be any official confirmation, current Milan coach Leonardo is expected to depart this summer, and former Netherlands and Ajax boss Van Basten was considered one of the forerunners to take his place.

However, he has now said he is unable to take the role due to the injury that forced him to retire from professional football at the age of 29 in 1995.

"I am still not ready," he told Sky Sport 24. "I still have an ankle problem and I must resolve it. I can't do a big job like that of a coach as for that your mind has to be clear.

"I am here at the moment and I enjoy myself playing golf, then we'll see what will happen. I have always had a good relationship with [Milan president] Silvio Berlusconi but this is another thing entirely.

"I have read the stories about Milan and me. It's a wonderful idea. Milan and the people of Milan are kind to me, but right now I have this problem with my ankle and it doesn't seem right to see a coach limp on the pitch. Now I am thinking about the ankle, then everything is possible."

Van Basten feels those already within the coaching structure are best suited to the position.

"I am convinced that [Milan assistant coach Mauro] Tassotti would be a great coach," he said. "He is a man with a lot of experience who knows Milan's culture and its fans well.

"He would certainly be in a position to train a team like Milan and the same goes for the other names that I have read like that of [Milan technical assistant] Filippo Galli.

"Leonardo has done very well up to now. The club sold many players but still managed to conquer third place. His performance has been great, then he made his decision, of which I don't know anything."

Tassotti, meanwhile, insists he does not know whether Leonardo intends to remain at the club beyond the end of the season.

"I don't know his choices or what they will be," he said. "It's down to him to explain his choices and he will be the one to reveal them. Nothing has been said about it. We have to wait and see what he says. So far, it has been all rumours about an evolving situation."

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