Experienced Japan international Keisuke Honda has disagreed with his manager Sinisa Mihajlovic's negative criticism of his players.
The playmaker told reporters that he believed the players are not to be blamed for the club's poor form after the loss to Napoli and referenced the struggles experienced international footballers can have when joining the San Siro.
"I don't understand that. There is no point in blaming the players. Milan have used countless players over the past few years, and this year 100 euros million was spent. There are a lot of players who play international football, and they still can't perform when they join Milan."
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Not for the first time, Mihajlovic criticised his players after another below-par performance that saw his side lose 4-0 at home to Napoli.
The Serbian who in his career played for multiple Serie A clubs including rivals Inter, previously criticised his side after they won 2-1 away to Empoli. He then told reporters his side didn't deserve the victory, and after the Napoli game he referred to his side's mentality.
"Perhaps we need (Sigmund) Freud… since I've arrived I have been trying to work on the players' mentality. I have been speaking to them individually and as a group, trying to analyse everything. Clearly it is not that easy. I expected to resolve things earlier, but evidently we have to keep on working."
After this latest criticism from his coach Honda has publically disagreed.
"If we don't learn from this defeat, it means that we are far from rebuilding this club. Looking at the past few years, I think it is clear this club cannot start over unless a lot of money is spent, like PSG or [Manchester] City.
"You either do that, or you have to re-examine the structure of the club. Management, coach and fans must be aware of the situation.
"In order to change the club, we must change how everyone evaluates it, whether it be directors, coach, fans or media. If that doesn't happen, then five to 10 years are needed."
"I know I will be criticised because of my thoughts, but they are important for the future of this club. Milan's problems are clear, as they are always the same."
Honda, who is currently on international duty with Japan for World Cup qualifiers, has made four starts this season for an AC Milan side who currently sit eleventh in Serie A.
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