Marco Giampaolo Says He'll Never Resign Despite AC Milan Struggles

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistOctober 4, 2019

MILAN, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 21: Head coach Marco Giampaolo of Milan looks on during the Serie A match between AC Milan and FC Internazionale at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on September 21, 2019 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images)
Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images

AC Milan manager Marco Giampaolo has said he'll never resign from the role despite pressure building following a disappointing start to the club's season.

The Rossoneri sit 16th in Serie A after taking six points from their opening six games. Giampaolo signed a contract until 2021 when he joined the club in June, but there is already speculation the 52-year-old could be replaced.

Speaking to Le Iene (h/t Ben Nagle of MailOnline), he said: "We're working to do better. We were already working at 8 a.m. this morning. You say I work a lot but work badly? We'll find the solution. Resigning? Never! Leaving means giving up, and we never give up."

Milan suffered their third successive league defeat when they lost 3-1 at home to Fiorentina on Sunday, finishing the match with 10 men after central defender Mateo Musacchio was sent off:

The San Siro support targeted criticism at the Milan board following the result, per Milanese journalist Tancredi Palmeri:

Tancredi Palmeri @tancredipalmeri

Milan fans currently retiring banners from stands while Milan lose 0-2 v Fiorentina and is at 16th of the table, chanting “This ownership doesn’t deserve us”

Giampaolo impressed during his three-year reign at Sampdoria prior to taking over at the San Siro, but the size of the task at hand appears too much based on early evidence. Milan clinched 1-0 wins over promoted Brescia and Hellas Verona, but they've struggled against higher-class competition.

Rossoneri legend Gennaro Gattuso served for 18 months as manager before he stepped down at the end of last season, having guided the team to fifth and just short of a UEFA Champions League spot.

The club's fans would likely jump at the chance to return to that standard, particularly after rivals Inter Milan have enjoyed a revival under Antonio Conte and lead Serie A with a perfect record.

The pressure may be forcing Giampaolo to change his ways after the tactician bucked his own trend against Fiorentina, per OptaPaolo:

OptaPaolo @OptaPaolo

0 - Marco #Giampaolo has chosen the same starting 11 for #ACMilan for the first time in the current Serie A season, he has never done so the last season with Sampdoria. Solution. #MilanFiorentina https://t.co/giKsX5Fztf

Former Inter manager Luciano Spalletti recently told a reporter from TopCalcio24 (h/t Corriere dello Sport, via MailOnline's Leigh McManus) he won't be the man to replace his compatriot.

He said: "I'm coaching Milan? That's wild as I have a contract with Inter. Let Giampaolo work, he is the rising star of Italian football. You should come with me to harvest some grapes, you would have more calluses on your hands and you would do less work…"

Milan will try to end their Serie A rut and climb the standings in their visit to Genoa on Saturday, and their manager intends to fight to the end while he's in the role.