Rudd Gullit Euro 2012 Interview with Daily Mail

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As a preview to the Quarter Final match between England and Italy, Dailymail spoke to Rudd Gullit about the Azzuri. Here’s the full interview presented in a much more readable style

Sportsmail columnist Ruud Gullit played in Italy for eight years and understands their players and supporters better than most. Here the Euro 1988 winner casts his expert eye on England’s next opponents.


Rudd Gullit :

Italy are playing well – they are better than I thought they would be, especially considering the match-fixing crisis in their country. But then the Italians know how to play a tournament, especially when they are under pressure.

In 1982, they had recently had the match-fixing controversy and won the World Cup. It was the same again in 2006. They know how to win. So now it has happened again and they are playing for pride. Their pride is everything they have.

Andrea Pirlo in midfield is the biggest threat to England. I like him very much. Everything goes through him, he’s their captain and dictates games. He’s a very good playmaker and Scott Parker will have to be at his best to stop him.

As for Mario Balotelli, I hope he learns from all his mistakes because he is such a talent, but after a while you have to stop talking about him because he enjoys the attention.

He will have had plenty of attention in Italy. When I was at AC Milan, I couldn’t walk around the streets. During my time at Chelsea I could sit in a cafe in the King’s Road and relax but in Italy I had to go out back entrances and run as fast as I could because there were so many people wanting to talk to me. Italians are not ashamed of showing their emotions and that is nice.

The most important thing you need to know about Italians is that they are very proud. So when the Italians play football, they are playing for pride and they will defend that with everything they have. They will defend their goal at any cost.

They like all the aesthetic things in life, all the beauty: food, fancy cars, nice clothes – they appreciate them all. For that reason, defending is an art form for them. And because it is considered art, it is so difficult for strikers to score goals. If you get one chance as a forward, you must score and therein lies their strength. They know they have to score. If you score, you’re good. If you don’t, you’re not.

Milan was a serious group of players. Everything was all about winning. With that group of Paolo Maldini, Franco Baresi, they wanted to win every game. If we drew a game, hell broke loose with people screaming.

Arrigo Sacchi screamed, Fabio Capello screamed, so we had to stay at the top. Silvio Berlusconi was the same. Almost every week he would fly into the training ground in his helicopter – landing on one of the astro pitches. He was very close to us.

When he came we were all so smart, everybody wore a tie. I had to adapt immediately, particularly with clothes. My fashion sense was terrible and as soon as the other players saw me, they said, ‘You can’t wear that’. We had a moveable skeleton in the changing room and if somebody had something strange on, they would dress it with your clothes. That’s when you knew not to wear them ever again. The first thing I had to do was get rid of my white socks.

Everything was so professional at the club and when you arrive at the training ground Milanello, you can sense the smell of winning. As a player you have nothing to worry about except football. If you have a gas pipe that is broken, they’ll fix it for you; if your car breaks down, they will deal with it. You just have to think about playing well.

The diet was so healthy too. You had salads, beans, ham and then afterwards pastas, risottos or fish. Everything was good for you and I was used to Holland, where we ate steaks and salty soup before a game. When I tried to change the food at Chelsea they all just laughed at me and asked for their food back. ‘We want our gravy back,’ they used to say to me.

When I arrived in Italy, I weighed 89kg (14 stone) and Maldini was 82kg (13 stone). We were the same height and they couldn’t figure out why I weighed so much more. So I had to go on the scales every day and they tried to measure the fat on my hips, arms and back. In the end they realised it was all muscle.

Playing there was the best period of my life – I owe everything to the Italian league. And back then you had Inter, Juventus, Napoli, Roma – so many top clubs competing, just like the Premier League now.

The biggest problem in Italian football now is the stadiums. They are old and people don’t want to go there. Juventus’s attendances were poor and then they opened a new stadium and all of a sudden it was packed. The seats are nice, the facilities are good and they are proud of it. Other clubs need to do the same. Win Euro 2012 and the attendances might creep up again.

Source


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Did Berlusconi and Galliani Fool Milan Fans ?

Silvio Berlusconi is a Businessman and a Successful Politician. a Successful politician has many ways up his sleeve to win the votes of the masses. Propaganda and positive publicity being the prime.

There are no votes to be won from Milan fans, however for the last few years, come the italian summer and President Berlusconi is usually criticized by Milan fans all over the world for not spending on quality players, for lack of revenue and other such club mismanagement allegations.

What does The President do in return ? Create a difficult situation and then emerge as the rescuer


When news came that Thiago Silva was being sold to PSG, tears flew and anger prevailed in the hearts of Milanisti worldwide. Speculations were flying and the usual media reports full of “insider details” emerged. Usual stuff, that’s always the case when it comes to any major transfer. Reports from France were confirming meetings being scheduled, flights being taken and Money being talked about.

However there were some things that were not agreeing with the usual way Adriano Galliani does business

– Milan Channel confirmed that Milan were talking to PSG about selling Thiago Silva. Milan channel never confirms any speculative rumors. When Pato was being shipped off to PSG earlier this year, there was no mention of it on Milan channel till the deal was pronounced dead.

– Galliani took a regular flight to Paris and was clearly shot by camera’s walking through the Charles DeGaulle airport. In january when he went a few times to Manchester to deal for Tevez, he constantly flew on private planes and all efforts were made to keep things under wraps

– Details of the deal were also reported by Mediaset, the media company owned by Silvio Berlusconi. Just like Milan channel earlier, Mediaset never speculates or reports on Serious deals that are done

– When Kaka was being sold there were huge protests by Curva Sud Ultras in Milan/Milanello. There were none of them this time around even though Thiago remains as important for Milan now that Kaka was then

– There were huge numbers thrown around and the Milan hierarchy made a big deal of the Amount of money involved in this deal and various Big Numbers were leaked to the Media generously

– It was reported that Barbara was displeased with her Daddy for wanting to sell Thiago Silva and was pouting and throwing tantrums so Silvio won’t go through with this sale. They are making such a clear attempt to put her in the good books of the Fans.

– Abruptly after 2 days of meetings and speculations, it was announced that Thiago Silva is staying as “The President Blocked the deal“. Berlusconi it was claimed would pump in his own money to cover the debt

– Galliani went on to remind us a 100 times of President Berlusconi’s greatness and how he has covered Milan’s losses for the past 26 years and how every Milanista should be thankful to Silvio forever

– Galliani also urged the fans to buy season tickets and fill up the stadiums as a thank you to President Berlusconi

– Allegri went on to thank the President for this “Gift”. The gift of not selling our best player ?

– Milan channel ran Propaganda videos featuring pictures of Thiago Silva and Silvio Berlusconi with text portraying the President as the last minute savior of the Milan world

Was this just another public stunt devised by Berlusconi and his team to get positive votes of confidence from the fans ? Was this meant to make fans realize the importance of Berlusconi’s personal contributions to Milan and portray him as a Savior ? Thereby taking attention away from the transfer market and the lack of signings by Milan.

Milan won’t be making any quality signings this Window and when asked Galliani is likely to refer to the Failed Thiago Silva deal and Berlusconi’s personal contributions. This elaborate stunt has killed a lot of birds with one smart move. Galliani will equate Keeping Thiago Silva with Making a new signing and come the end of the transfer Market we all know what to expect from the Milan management.

It would be much easier if Galliani would just come out and ask the fans to show some Patience for a few years while Milan sort out their revenue systems and get back on track. What’s even worse is that our Management thinks that the Fans will eat up all this drama and be thankful that Berlusconi did not sell the Player which in any case should be absolutely unsellable.

Galliani and Berlusconi clearly know that selling Thiago Silva would have too many negative repercussions. They would have risked pissing off the Fans and pushing away the season ticket buyers and sponsors. More importantly it would affected the team harmony and attracted dissent from the star players, Like it already happened in the case of Antonio Cassano

Deals for star players of Big European clubs are held under wraps and a meticulous amount of attention is paid to keep everything secretive. If Berlusconi and Galliani really had to sell Thiago Silva, it would have been done quietly and with least attention attracted. As sorry as i am for the losses suffered by the Berlusconi family and the situation of Milan, i believe that any self respecting Milanista would rather have the truth out on table than these dramatic scenarios and false speculations.

We Won’t Get Fooled Again Mr.Berlusconi !! Milan Fans want our Legendary Club Back !


What Can AC Milan Fans Expect from the 2012 Summer Transfer Window ?

Carlo Ancelotti describes Galliani as the biggest AC Milan fan in the world, The Man who slept with the Champions League trophy the last two times Milan won it. Galliani in turn describes Silvio Berlusconi as a man who bleeds Red and Black. Why then, fans are left wondering, are they hell bent on destroying the club by selling star players and sending away promising youth.

One January afternoon, there was a lot of hustle bustle in Milanello. It was being reported that Pato was leaving Milan and was busy packing bags and saying goodbyes. It was only a late minute change of mind by the Striker and a phone call by Berlusconi that led to this transfer being cancelled. Little did we realize then, what a big impact this would have on the future of AC Milan.

Thiago Silva is close to leaving Milan and the reason is strictly financial. Milan don’t have the money to write off the debts. This instantly reminds every Milanista of the tragic sale of Ricky Kaka. It’s unlikely that we would have to see this day if Pato had been sold in January.

What can Milan Fans expect in the months to come ?

Thiago Silva will leave Milan to join PSG and leave a gaping hole in the Milan defense already crippled by the departure of Sandro Nesta. This void is unlikely to be filled by Mexes or Bonera. As a result, Ibrahimovic will also want out.

More than anything else Ibra wants to win that Champions League Trophy. With perhaps 3 good seasons left at the Top Level of football, It will be clear to him that he can’t win the big ears with the rossoneri. Teams who want to win the big crown don’t sell players like Thiago Silva.

Ibra also knows that he can join Mourinho at Madrid and have a great chance of striking gold. The chances are that we will consider selling Ibrahimovic as well. This will appeal to Galliani and Berlusconi as not only will they make a substantial amount of money from the sale of a 30 year old striker, they will also save upon the €9m a year wage that they are currently paying Ibrahimovic.

With the combined cash revenue from these two sales, Milan can easily write off the €67m debt and still have cash left over for fringe players like Acerbi and Rigoni. Not to mention that the midfield has already been upgraded with the signing of Montolivo and the expected free transfer of Aquilani.

Bottomline: The Big Players will go. To ‘upgrade’ the team, Galliani will look in the trash bins of clubs like Madrid, Man City and Barcelona. If we get new players it will through a bargain or a Loan deal. Come the end of the transfer window we will have some last minute cheap backup transfers like Urby and Mesbah. Finally, Come 31st August we will hear the New official Club Slogan – Ac Milan “We are Fine as We are”


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