Parma, 3 December 2021 – Before leaving for Ascoli, where Parma will play their 16th Serie BKT 2021/22 fixture on Sunday, Coach Iachini spoke to journalists in the press room of the Technical Centre of Collecchio.

“I came in and told the boys what I wanted and the team responded immediately. There wasn’t much time, but in terms of the training and their attitude, they did wellWe need these matches to figure out where we are at and what we need to do. Ascoli have been playing together for almost two years, it would have been easier to face a less prepared opponent because we are still building. I know their environment well, it’ll be a hostile one, Parma will have to be ready”.

“When a team goes down and then doesn’t start well, the pressure starts to build: on Wednesday when we arrived at the field I saw too much anxiety and this never helps, we had prepared the match in a certain way, but we booted away a few too many balls out of fear instead of playing them. We are going through a rough patch and we’re feeling the pressure, knowing that we haven’t lived up to expectations by being up there in the battle for promotion, we need to rebuild this confidence. After we spoke at half-time, the lads went back out there on Wednesday with the right attitude: Brescia took 3 shots in the whole match, we had 6 chances, in the first half Brescia did more but in the second half we were more aggressive and this is the attitude we must have; we didn’t make the most of our chances, we made a few mistakes, instead of going wide, we tried to feed in centrally giving it away, we must continue to work on it”.

“The unavailable players are the same as in the previous game. At the end of each match, we had 4 or 5 guys who were a bit more tired and need to be monitored; we’re leaving today because it’s a five-hour coach journey, when we get there we’ll see how some players are recovering and then decide.”

“When I arrived I laid out some rules, Danilo essentially repeated what we’ve been saying to each other over the last few days: become a team, go in there and fight hard, then the results will come, but beyond that, it’s the attitude that’s important: We have to be a team, we have to fight for 95 minutes and play as well as we can. We should always be looking to win”. At Como, we made up for it and tried to make it 2-1, against Brescia we tried until the end. We must be the ones to find the spark that can give us more composure and awareness.

“If things haven’t gone right over the last five months, it means there’s a situation that needs to be remedied through work and mentality: we need to overcome the fear out there too. We have a lot of room for improvement when we are in possession, and we need to add pace, dynamism and passing when we don’t have the ball: we need to work hard on the pitch and in the gym. But now we can’t overdo it on the training front because of the tight schedule.

“They’re a team that are lively and will thrive off us playing fearfully, in Ascoli we’re expecting a hostile environment, they know that Parma are coming and they will want to create the right atmosphere. They’ve been working together for almost two years, they have quality players, they’ve become a team that we must emulate in many ways. Football is about planning, preparing things on the field. We’re starting to lay the foundations again. What has happened has happened, it has left a mark and fear is taking over. We have to go forward, not backwards, now we have some issues all stemming from fear, from our place in the standings and from a championship that has not lived up to expectations, the players can feel it: we have to nip it in the bud”.

“When we arrived at the pitch on Wednesday you could see we were too nervous. The team has to go out there and take the initiative, but that’s what comes from confidence and enthusiasm: we have to work on that. The market? Today we’re talking about the lads we have with us, I expect a lot from all of them.