Julien Stéphan : « We're not in a position to make any calculations. »

Although Milan are "ultra-favourites", Julien Stéphan and his players are determined to stand up to the Italians. Here's a look back at the pre-match press conference.

Julien Stéphan
© Stade Rennais F.C.

The first leg
« We'll have to start at full throttle, keep going at full throttle and finish at full throttle. We have no choice because we're going to be playing against an opponent with great qualities. We have to play a full match. We're not in a position to make any calculations. That doesn't mean we won't play an intelligent game, but those are two different things. We're going to have to give 100% from start to finish, without slacking off. If we drop off, they'll inevitably punish us. »

Is this the most prestigious match in the club's history?
« In European competition, certainly. It's difficult to compare because we also played Arsenal. Because of its history, Milan has had a huge presence in Europe for decades. »

French players in Milan :
« I'm not worried about that, it's a real boost to play against good players. They have them in every line. All the good clubs abroad have French players. That means that the training works very well and that the players export themselves very well.»

The dynamics :
« It's positive because we have confidence, but we're always on our toes. In any case, when we come to Milan, we're ultra-vigilant and concerned. We'll have to pay attention to every detail of the match, starting with the quality of the start. Milan will be very strong, and we'll have to respond to that intensity. »

Support from the fans:
« We're very sensitive to that. It shows the very special relationship that can exist between players and supporters. It's getting stronger and stronger. I don't know if it's a reflection of a club that's growing, but it's a reflection of a growing love, a belief in any case. Perhaps there's also a new generation of supporters who want to live these moments to the full. We obviously owe them a debt of gratitude for that and for their sacrifices, for their exemplary commitment. We'll need a performance to match the enormous support we have. »

UEFA Europa League - Play-off first leg
AC Milan / Stade Rennais F.C.
Thursday 15 February 2024 - 21:00 CET
San Siro Stadium