x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Leonardo's men yet to hit top gear

"We are not brilliant but we're not awful either." That is how Leonardo, the manager of AC Milan, sums up his side's mediocre start to the season.

"We are not brilliant but we're not awful either." That is how Leonardo, the manager of AC Milan, sums up his side's mediocre start to the season. The Italian giants sit just one point and one place above today's opponents Bari in the Serie A standings. A 1-0 loss to Udinese in midweek marked their second defeat of the campaign, and Leonardo admits poor finishing is currently Milan's biggest problem.

The Brazilian said: "We haven't scored enough goals and that's obviously hindering us. We played well against Udinese. We played even better in the second half, where we created three goalscoring chances. "I think a draw would have been a fair result and that is why the defeat still hurts." Massimo Donati, the midfielder, will renew acquaintances with his former club after joining Bari from Scottish side Celtic in the summer. Donati, who spent six seasons at the San Siro, said: "When I arrived at Milan I was too young and then our roads separated, without meeting again.

"It went like this, but now I think only about the present. We'll go to Milan to go for it, they are strong but we've already shown we can do well against anyone." Elsewhere, Genoa will once again be out to prove they belong in the top four of Serie A when they travel to Udinese. The Rossoblu, who topped the table two weeks ago, came close to beating Juventus on Thursday night only for David Trezeguet's late strike to deny them in a 2-2 draw.

Even so, the club president, Enrico Preziosi, believes the performance proves Genoa are in the battle for the long term. "Genoa were in it before, we are in it now, and we will be in it tomorrow," he said on Radio Nostalgia. "We have made our case." * With agencies Milan v Bari, KO 10.45pm, Aljazeera Sport + 1