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The 76-year-old former Italy prime minister is confident his team will rise from the ashes and reclaim their place among Europe's elite in the near future

AC Milan president Silvio Berlusconi has conceded that the Rossoneri are going through a transitional period, but expressed his firm belief that the Italian outfit will be great again in three years.

Massimiliano Allegri's team got off to a rough start to its Serie A campaign, but have recently experienced a resurgence in form and now finds itself just nine points off the last Champions League spot.

Berlusconi is of the opinion that team needs time to grow and spoke of his vision of the future in which he feels Santos target Robinho, but not Manchester City's Mario Balotelli, will play a key role.

"This is a transitional period for us, as we have been successful for 26 years, but now we must have a little patience. We give ourselves three years to become a major force in Italy and in the world once again," Berlusconi is quoted as saying by Sky Sport Italia.

He added, "We are focusing on our youth players and have some outstanding prospects at the club now, like the extraordinary 15-year-old Hachim Mastour, who will be able to play in Serie A when he turns 16.

"M'baye Niang is very much like Mario Balotelli, even his hairstyle is the same. The papers keep going on about Balotelli and us, but I never dreamed of bringing him here and he not on our transfer list.

"We are trying to boost the squad with the introduction of young players, but I hope we can sign some big names as well."

Berlusconi then had a word on the possible departure of Robinho to his native Brazil, and insisted that the club will try to keep him at San Siro.

"We hope to convince Robinho to stay here. He brings joy to the squad and we all like him. He misses Brazil, but he’s not for sale," he said.

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