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Why did Gennaro Gattuso let his Milan players slap him after win over Lazio?

The Milan legend used a rather unorthodox method to motivate his players

Things are gradually looking up for AC Milan, after their terrible start to the season. 

The mega-rich Serie A side – who signed over £200million worth of talent over the summer, including the likes of Leonardo Bonucci, Andre Silva, Franck Kessie and Hakan Calhanoglu – currently sit seventh in the Serie A table.

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One happy Rino

One happy Rino

But things looked a lot worse for the Rossoneri earlier on in the campaign.

They sacked old manager Vincenzo Montella in November, with the side then 18 points behind leaders Napoli after a run of just two league victories in nine games.

But under new boss and former midfield favourite Gennaro Gattuso, their form has improved.

The Milan legend has improved team spirit

The Milan legend has improved team spirit

Their 2-1 win over Lazio at the weekend was their fourth in their last five matches, putting the once great side just three points off a Europa League spot.

And speaking after the game, the 40-year-old admitted he used a rather unorthodox method to motivate his players.

Speaking to Sky Sports Italia, he said: “I do it to make the players happy.

“There are one or two who won’t get into the team, and so they start to look at me funny.

“In that moment there, they have the chance to give me a clip round the ear.

“I go and stand in the middle of the huddle and that way I make sure no one tries to hit me in the changing room.”

Well, y’know, if it works.

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In the same post-match interview, the Milan legend had a rather cheeky message to his former Italy teammate Gianluigi Buffon, who celebrated his 40th birthday at the weekend.

Don’t ever change, Rino.