Serie A news

Zapata: We must bounce back

March 14, 2013
By ESPN staff

Cristian Zapata says AC Milan must put their Champions League exit to Barcelona behind them and focus on securing their place in next season's tournament.

Cristian Zapata
GettyImagesCristian Zapata is focusing on defeating Palermo

Milan crashed out of Europe's elite competition on Tuesday after they were on the wrong end of a 4-0 hiding by Barcelona, despite coming into the game holding a 2-0 advantage from the first leg.

But Zapata, 26, believes the Rossoneri need to forget about the defeat and concentrate on their remaining Serie A games, starting with Palermo on Sunday. Massimiliano Allegri's side currently sit third in the table with just ten fixtures remaining.

"We need to achieve our [league] goal which is to finish second," Zapata told Milan Channel. "Palermo will be tough on Sunday, but we cannot fail."

Meanwhile, former Milan midfielder Clarence Seedorf says he is pleased to have seen a turnaround in his old club's fortunes.

The Rossoneri had a nightmare start to the season after losing five of their first eight games, leaving them at the lower end of the table.

However, Allegri has since sparked a revival in his side, who now sit just two points off second-placed Napoli.

"I'm happy that Milan have managed to recover without too many difficulties," he told Sky Sport Italia.

"Now they have to try and keep this positive trend going. It won't be easy and they could feel the fatigue of it all, but they are doing very well. It was clear that this Milan was not a side who should have been in 15th place..."

Seedorf, 36, left Italy to join Botafogo last summer following ten years at the San Siro.