Parma, 14 February 2022 – Before the training session scheduled today and on the eve of Cremonese vs. Parma, which will kick off at 18:30 CET on Tuesday 15 February, Coach Beppe Iachini held a video press conference at Collecchio. This is what he had to say:

“I’d like to highlight the growth of the group, as well as how there’s now a closer bond between the older players and the younger guys. You can’t achieve anything without unity of purpose, and we need to become one on the pitch in terms of our mentality, attitude, the way we play and our spirit. On Saturday, the unity was there: you saw how the lads and everyone on the bench embraced each other after the goals. Everyone came together, and this is the spirit I want to see in my teams.

“In addition to implementing what we do during the week, we need to display the required spirit and attitude. We also need technical accuracy and to also get it right when it comes to our final ball, something which we did well in the second half and actually at the start of the game too. Unity of purpose is important and I wanted to highlight it. You can see how the group are growing. We could have picked up a few more points and there have been some negative moments, but, despite nerves creeping in at times, the performances have been there.

“While we’re happy that we’ve added points to our tally, we need to evaluate a few of the lads. The last few matches have resulted in aches and pains, and medical checks are taking place this morning. The two training sessions we have coming up will tell us who will be able to play.

“We saw a spark against Alessandria, but then the long break made it die down a bit. At the beginning, there can be ups and downs on the way to a continuous peak; we’re looking for consistency. The team were vibrant on Saturday, but there was a mental drop after their goal and we got a few passes wrong. This shouldn’t happen; we need to remain focused. There was, however, a positive reaction in the second half where we implemented what we’d prepared during the week. Our final ball wasn’t quite right in Benevento, but the right mentality was there.

“You don’t reach the top positions by coincidence. Cremonese have won six of their last seven games. Their coach has been working with the group for a year and a half. They’re well organised, have the required characteristics in the right places and know how to be fast and unpredictable. They’re a complete team: it’s a group that has been built across 3-4 transfer windows with the same coach. The most important thing in football is to give continuity to a project. Knowledge creates advantages. When you’ve been together for a long time, improvements are made and you start to speak the language of the coach. This is the case for Cremonese and it’s what we’re aiming to do with our project as we look to become more of a team.

“We’re preparing for the game in two days, even if five days would have been better. However, we’re working to do what we need to do both defensively and offensively, where more incision is required, fully respecting the opposition in the process. We’ll need to produce a great performance.

“A single game won’t ever be enough to make me change my mind on a player. We’re working with the lads to make them improve. Bonny scores the most in training during the week. Perhaps he got a bit too excited on Saturday, but he’s 18 years old and you can’t excessively criticise someone so young if they get it wrong; otherwise, they’ll never grow. We have a group made up of a few experienced heads and many youngsters. As part of the Club’s project, we need to develop the young guys. Bernabè did his bit, producing a good display. Like all the players, he can do better, but he has quality and can lend us a big hand.”