Pioli focused on future tests after easy win

Pioli focused on future tests after easy win

14/07/2018 21:47

Stefano Pioli called for his squad to continue focusing on preparing for the season ahead after Fiorentina eased past US Borgo with a 17-0 win on Saturday afternoon.

"The most important thing is to work hard," said the Viola coach. "Riccardo [Saponara] had a good game today, as did lots of them. There will be more demanding tests to come this week, which is what we wanted. It’s good to discover some issues at this point, because it’s something to work on. Right now we’re focusing heavily on our build-up play, on getting men forward, on moving well and on moving the ball quickly. We showed clear thinking today and kept the ball moving throughout."

The Fiorentina boss praised new signing Federico Ceccherini, who joined the club from Crotone a few days ago.

"Ceccherini is a player we’d been tracking – he was on our list," he said. "I think he’s a very reliable defender, he’s Italian and he has a lot of experience at this level. He can play as either the right-sided or left-sided centre-back, so he’ll be a very useful addition to our squad. He’s extremely motivated and happy too, which is important."

Pioli insisted he was in no hurry when asked about further signings, stressing the need to wait to get the right deal.

"From the coach’s perspective, the quicker new players come in the better job I can do," he began. "That said, seeing as we are looking for players that are going to raise the standard of the squad, I don’t think we can rush things. If we have to wait a little longer for the right player in the right position to improve the team, I’m happy to wait. They’ll come."

Fiorentina have a youthful squad for the season ahead, with Serbia’s Nikola Milenkovic one of those marked out for a big campaign following an impressive World Cup.

"In my mind Nikola is a right-back first and foremost," explained Pioli. "As you know, we mix up the defensive shape regularly – sometimes we play with a back three, sometimes with a back four. Nikola can adapt to that easily. He can play as a centre-back and on the right side of central defence he can play a big role in terms of building the play out. I think the World Cup has done him a lot of good – it was a great experience for him. He’s another of those players that have lots and lots of potential. He has that desire to work hard and he needs to keep that up. "

Federico Chiesa is another of the Viola youngsters hoping to continue his progress this season – but Pioli wants more goals from the Italian starlet.

"I think Federico needs to try to score more goals this season," he said. "I think he’s capable of scoring more than six goals. He’s turning into a great player in the one on ones and he has a fantastic turn of pace. Of course, he can always improve in the way he links up with his team-mates, but in my opinion the biggest area for him to focus on is his work without the ball. If he does that, he can become even more dangerous in attack."

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