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Fiorentina can use ´bitterness´ from 2023 Europa Conference League final defeat, says Italiano


Vincenzo Italiano has urged Fiorentina to use their “bitterness” from last year’s defeat in the Europa Conference League final against Olympiacos on Wednesday.

Fiorentina lost the 2023 Europa Conference League final in Prague to West Ham 2-1, conceding in the 90th minute to miss out on the chance to lift the trophy.

The Viola have not lost a game in the competition on the way to the final, holding off Club Brugge 4-3 on aggregate to reach the final for the second consecutive year.

Despite suffering disappointment last year, Italiano is hopeful his team can use that as a lesson to lead them to the trophy this time around.

“The only thing that’s different is that we’ve already experienced certain things,” Italiano told a press conference before Wednesday’s final.

“We have a bit of experience; we carry that with us and tomorrow we have to show it. We can’t make any mistakes; we must stay alert and focused.

“Last year we didn’t have a good ending. We’ll bring that bitterness to make it end differently.”

Meanwhile, Olympiacos are aiming to make history by becoming the first Greek side to win a European trophy.

Jose Luis Mendilibar, who won the Europa League with Sevilla last season, took over Olympiacos in February and is leading the team out for the final in their home city of Athens.

In a press conference on Tuesday, Mendilibar said he would not be making any changes, approaching this game as they have the rest.

“We have to stay calm and relaxed and do what got us to the final. To change anything would be a mistake.

“We have to treat this game like any other because that’s how we managed to get to the final.

“Along the way, we’ve crossed the whole of Europe, playing against a lot of opponents.

“At times we were favourites, and then underdogs again. There are so many different moments and I think we could call it a marathon, and now we’ve reached the end.”





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