Gattuso hoping to escape ban ahead of Milan derby

VERONA, ITALY - MARCH 09: AC Milan coach Gennaro Gattuso looks on before the Serie A match between Chievo Verona and AC Milan at Stadio Marc'Antonio Bentegodi on March 9, 2019 in Verona, Italy. (Photo by Marco Luzzani/Getty Images)

Gennaro Gattuso’s assistant manager Gigi Riccio hopes the coach escapes a ban ahead of the Derby della Madonina after his dismissal against Chievo.

The Rossoneri boss received his marching orders after a fierce row with Chievo player Riccardo Meggiorini on the touchline in their 2-1 victory.

And Riccio fears the worst might follow suit ahead of their derby clash with Inter Milan next week.

“We hope he’ll be there for the derby, absolutely,” Riccio revealed in a quote cited on Football Italia.

“Unfortunately, it was just a moment of the game, but they cleared the air after the final whistle and it ends there.

Riccio equally commended the team’s effort for grinding out a win in a very difficult arena for top teams.

“As for the game, we knew it was going to be difficult, let’s not forget Lazio and Inter were held to draws here.

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“We were in control and then made a bit of a mess on the Chievo goal, but Krzysztof Piatek got the winner and sorted things out.”

Ahead of next week’s Derby della Madonnina with Inter, Milan rested several players, giving Lucas Biglia his first start since October.

“Biglia had already come on as a substitute in previous games, so we knew he’d bring balance, organisation and leadership to the midfield.

“Andrea Conti is coming off a very serious injury, had played well against Empoli and this was a continuation of that journey back to full fitness.

“Diego Laxalt filled in well for suspended Ricardo Rodriguez, as he doesn’t pass as much, but does have more pace.

“Finally, we all know Hakan Calhanoglu had a rough week (flying back to Germany for the birth of his daughter), so we gave him a rest and tried out a front three of left-footed players.”