Gattuso 'not building anything' at Milan despite recent fine form

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The in-form Rossoneri are on track for a return to the Champions League, but their coach will not allow himself to look long term

Milan boss Gennaro Gattuso has stated that he is “not building anything” at the club despite a recent upturn in form to help bolster his position.

The 41-year-old’s side are unbeaten in six games across all competitions and have lifted themselves to fourth in Serie A to occupy the division’s last qualification place for the Champions League.

Despite the overall progress made since his took the top job at the San Siro outfit however, reports of a forced exit from the Rossoneri have been a constant background feature of his tenure.

Names linked with his role have included Arsene Wenger and Antonio Conte but the former defensive midfielder, who spent 13 years with the club, is ignoring speculation and remain focused on his work week by week.

“At Milan I'm not building anything, we just have to prepare the games that are coming, one at a time,” Gattuso stated. “Today nothing can be planned, football has changed. There are so many unknowns. Ten to 12 years ago it was more difficult for a player to leave.

“So we have to focus on what we have to do. We are in good hands, [Paolo] Maldini and Leonardo know how to move on the market: they have taken two important players like [Krzysztof] Piatek and [Lucas] Paqueta.

“I do not go so fast with my head. I am one who touches reality with my own hands. Today I have to go through the results and the daily work, as it is for my players. In my path I do not have these kind of thoughts, I think only of the next game. I have to give my best and put those around me in the best conditions.

“I do not want compliments, I have to thank only the team that is doing important things. At this moment, as well as before, I read little. I have to continue, I think I can do this job and I do not need to be told that I'm good.

“I know what I can give in a group and we will continue. They slaughter coaches who have won as much as [Jose] Mourinho, [Carlo] Ancelotti and [Massimiliano] Allegri...”

Milan next host Empoli on Friday, with Giuseppe Iachini's team only a place above the relegation zone, though they did pick up a 3-0 victory at home to Sassuolo last time out.

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Gattuso has however warned Milan they cannot afford to be complacent as they seek a third straight Serie A win.

“I am very worried about tomorrow,” he added. “Empoli have a coach that prepares well, combines technique and defensive organisation. Easy games do not exist. We must not underestimate the opponent.

“We must be very careful, because Iachini is incredible in the preparation of the matches. Empoli know how to dribble and go vertically, on the set pieces they know how to play well. The game will be difficult tomorrow.”