AC Milan coach Gennaro Gattuso has warned his team they can ill-afford to make a mistake when they host title-chasing Napoli in Serie A on Sunday.
Napoli’s Scudetto hopes have faded in recent weeks, but they remain in with a chance of denying reigning champions Juventus, who are four points clear with seven rounds of the season remaining.
In a news conference on Saturday, Gattuso expressed admiration for Maurizio Sarri’s side.
“Napoli are great at passing the ball around and keeping possession. They know where exactly they want to attack and how to do it,” said Gattuso.
“Their defensive line is impressive, they handle the ball so well too. If we make one mistake, we will regret it.”
Sunday’s game will see sixth-placed Milan come up against Pepe Reina, a goalkeeper they confirmed an interest in signing last month.
Asked about the veteran Spaniard, who is out of contract at the end of the season, Gattuso replied: “I don’t care. I only think about Gigio [Gianluigi Donnarumma] and the players I have in my squad.
“Pepe represents Napoli. If and when he arrives we will welcome him with open arms. Now we are focused on us.”
Another experienced goalkeeper, Gianluigi Buffon, hit the headlines for the wrong reasons this week after being sent off as Juventus were controversially dumped out of the Champions League by Real Madrid.
Buffon was unable to control his rage after referee Michael Oliver awarded a stoppage-time penalty that enabled Madrid to edge through 4-3 on aggregate.
Discussing the European efforts of Juve and Roma, who made sensational progress to the last four of the Champions League with a 3-0 second-leg win over Barcelona, Gattuso said: “I’m proud of what the Italian teams did this week. They have done well for our football. We had not seen performances like these in years.
“Buffon? I’m nobody to judge him. It’s not easy when you lose that way. I have huge respect for Gigi.”