Stefano Pioli

AC Milan head coach Stefano Pioli is keen to see his side return to winning ways when they welcome Verona to San Siro on Saturday.

Pioli’s side were on the wrong end of a 5-1 thrashing at the hands of local rivals Inter Milan last week and failed to convert any of their 25 shots on goal in their goalless draw against Newcastle in the Champions League curtain raiser.

The defeat to Inter ended Milan’s 100 per cent start to the campaign and they now face Verona who have won two already, including victory over Jose Mourinho’s Roma.

Pioli is confident his side can put things right this weekend, saying in quotes reported on the club’s website: “Winning is always important, especially after a defeat.

AC Milan v Newcastle United – UEFA Champions League – Group F – San Siro

“Easy matches don’t exist, just the desire to interpret them well. The team are doing well.

“We’re confident about what we’re doing and eager to produce the right performance against Verona.

“Right now, we’re only focused on our match against them.

“They’re an intense and aggressive side, and we need to be prepared and approach the game well to come away with the three points.

“We’ll have to be composed and intelligent and show an ability to understand the situations that develop as we look to find the necessary solutions.”

Following the dip in form, Pioli hinted at making changes but knows his players are eager to put things right.

“I’m focusing on making the right choices to win. It’s only right that the players are champing at the bit,” he said.

“There are 11 starters and then those who are subbed on as the game progresses, who can also provide something different. The maximum availability of players is important, the opportunities will come for everyone.”

Rafael Leao, 24, has made a bright start to the season having contributed two goals and two assists during his four Serie A matches this campaign.

Pioli is pleased with the Portugal international and thinks he is making all the right steps to be a top player.

He added: “Leao is on an important path, to go from the great player he is to being a champion.

“He will have to manage his talent and some phases of the game better. Growing up means more responsibility, but on a mental and character level he is making important steps, also in terms of availability.

“We must not give too much responsibility to a single player: the mistake of one is a mistake of all: we must continue on our path knowing that we all have to improve some things.”