Balotelli not yet a champion, says Seedorf

Milan coach Clarence Seedorf says forward Mario Balotelli still has work to do to be considered a champion.

Balotelli has scored nine goals in 17 Serie A appearances so far this season, but Milan have struggled to find any sort of form, with Seedorf brought in to replace Massimiliano Allegri last month.

Milan won their first two league games under Seedorf but have taken just one point from their last two, leaving them 11th, seven points adrift of a UEFA Europa League qualifying spot.

And Seedorf is hoping Balotelli can fulfil his potential and help bring better times back to San Siro.

"Mario is a great talent and we hope he can explode and become the champion that he still isn't yet," he said.

"I am convinced that sooner or later he will do it because he has great desire.

"His tears at Napoli were a release of emotion, he is a human being."

Seedorf went on to underline how much work Milan have to do to improve, but refused to criticise predecessor Allegri.

"I am optimistic for the future," he said.

"But it will take time to get things right because we have a lot of hard work to do.

"I know what it is we have to do, we are our own biggest critics. The team need to improve all over but it doesn't interest me to criticise the previous coach."