AC Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri has admitted that Tuesday night's friendly win over Schalke was vitally important for morale.
There is a dark cloud of pessimism hanging over San Siro following the sale of star men Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva to Paris Saint-Germain, and Saturday's Trofeo TIM defeats by Juventus and Inter have done little to lighten the mood among the Rossoneri faithful.
Allegri is hoping, though, that the 1-0 win over Schalke in Gelsenkirchen, which was achieved courtesy of a goal from Urby Emanuelson, will lift the spirits of everyone associated with the club.
"I'm happy with the victory; it's an important win," he is quoted as saying by Milan's official website. "This was needed for morale.
"The comments after the Trofeo TIM were unkind, although it will prove important in terms of being ready for August 26 [the first Sunday of the new Serie A season].
"But I feel calm; I was happy with the team. The opponents were dangerous only on two occasions, while we were good on the counterattack."
Emanuelson, meanwhile, was thrilled with his goal, particularly because he was forced very wide after going around Schalke goalkeeper Timo Hildebrand.
"Scoring is always nice, but I am very happy tonight and I thank Robinho for the assist," the Dutchman enthused. "The goal was well taken [by me], but also thanks to him.
"It was not so easy to score after going past the goalkeeper, but everything went well. Now we must build from here."
Milan, who finished second in Serie A last season, now travel to the United States to take on European champions Chelsea in Miami.