Jimenez salutes players after proud Milan display
AEK Athens coach Manolo Jiménez showered praise on his players after the SuperLeague club secured a second goalless draw in a row against Italian giants AC Milan on Thursday, ensuring their hopes of progressing in the Europa League on track.
“I am very proud of my players. We played against a great team and managed to defend well, but without abandoning our attack,” commented the Spaniard.
Austria Vienna’s victory over Rijeka means that both Milan - as group leaders - and AEK, remain in the Group D qualification spots moving on to Matchday 5.
“The victory of Austria Wien over Rijeka in Croatia is a very good result for us. However, we have our luck in our hands and everything depends on our performances in the remaining matches.”
AEK worked tirelessly to hold Milan at bay once again, following up their 0-0 draw with the Europa League favourites at the San Siro two weeks ago with another solid display - this time without recent ACL injury victim and captain Petros Mantalos.
Milan’s Riccardo Montolivo went closest to scoring, hitting the post with a low shot in the second half, but overall this Matchday 4 encounter was a match in which defences were dominant.
AEK’s stand-in skipper Jacob Johansson almost scored a spectacular late winner but his long range, swerving shot from 25 yards just missed Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma’s post.