Manuel Pellegrini has called on his Malaga players to prove that they are ready for what Wednesday’s opponents Milan might throw at them.
The Costa del Sol side face the Rossoneri this midweek in the third round of group stage action in the Champions League. For Pellegrini, it will be a test of his Malaga players’ mettle.
“Against Milan we will have to prove that in this game we are ready,” he told the gathered media today, speaking alongside Joaquin Sanchez.
“We have to play like we did against Zenit and Valladolid, which were two games that we won. We do not expect a different team, we anticipate Milan. What has come before won’t be repeated, for better or for worse. I am more concerned about Malaga, though.
“It is not for me to talk of Milan. They are not going well in the Italian League, but in the Champions League they have won four of six possible points.
“They are going to be very difficult to beat. Milan are undergoing a major cyclical change and that has taken its toll in the League, but they have been better in the Champions League. We need to be at our best in order to win this game.”
The game pits two in-form young attacking talents against each other, in Isco and Stephan El-Shaarawy.
“These are two young people who are great players and they have to demonstrate this great projection. Milan have very dangerous attackers, they are very difficult [to play against], so we have to play a great game.
“For them it is the same with Joaquin and Isco. They are players that can also unbalance a game.
“The mentality will be essential. Concentration is a basic, but then there is the technical and individual elements that can destabilise a game.”