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“They have been unfair with Mario”

It’s said

September 20, 2018

“They have been unfair with Mario”

On Thursday, during his pre-match press conference two days before the trip to Montpellier, Patrick Vieira not only announced the return of his number 9 to the matchday squad: he equally backed his player, after he had faced criticism from the Italian press after the game against Poland (1-1) on 7 September. “Mario was severely criticised in Italy: it’s always like that when the team doesn’t win, you need someone to blame, the Aiglons’ coach explained clearly. I think that Mario was the perfect culprit for the Italian press. It’s a shame. We spoke about it together, and I know that for these kind of things, he is strong enough mentally to deal with the situation. But they have really been unfair with him.

Asked about the need to send the colossus on international duty with the Squadra Azzurra, the coach was very clear: “He was well, he had just played with us. The national side cannot be refused, I think that it’s important for him to go there, Mario is always proud to wear that shirt. It was impossible for the club or I to stop him. But then I don’t know how he was managed there because I wasn’t there.” 

Before concluding by commenting on the striker’s physical condition: “He is not yet at 100% but I think he is very good.”