Montella: Bacca will start if he picks a good restaurant!

AC Milan boss Vincenzo Montella has told Carlos Bacca to treat the team to a quality meal if he wants to start against Bologna on Wednesday.

The Colombia international striker has offered to pay for dinner for the rest of the squad as part of an apology for a falling-out with Montella.

Bacca reacted angrily to being substituted against both Pescara and Sampdoria but stressed that his frustrations were more related to Milan's run of form rather than any ill-feeling with his head coach.

Montella insists the matter has been put to rest but jokingly suggested that Bacca will lose his place in the starting line-up if he does not offer the team some fine dining.

"We've cleared the air - I don't think he did anything serious," Montella told a news conference ahead of the Serie A clash at the Renato Dall'Ara. "He was out of line and he knows that. He is absolutely and completely reintegrated.

"He said he was willing to buy us dinner. Now it's up to me to decide if it's a Michelin-starred restaurant or a pizzeria.

"After I've asked him which restaurant to choose, his answer will have a big bearing on whether he starts!"

Milan have lost their last four matches - a run of results that has left them 10 points adrift of the Champions League places in Serie A and seen them exit the Coppa Italia at the hands of Juventus.

With a return to Europe's top table looking unlikely, speculation has emerged that former Inter boss Roberto Mancini could be set for a sensational return to San Siro as a replacement for Montella before next season.

But Montella insists that he is on track to complete his objectives for this season, having helped to turn Milan's young side into a far more capable unit that has already delivered a Supercoppa Italiana triumph.

"I don't give it much of a specific value," he said when asked about the gap to the European spots, which stands at five points. "I have to think about the initial objectives, which were to create a certain style.

"That's what I was told when I signed for Milan: that I was to try to pull off a sporting miracle in Doha [in the Supercoppa final against Juve] and help the young players to grow. I believe we're in line with our objectives.

"This is the time for everyone, me included, to show pride in playing for and coaching Milan, both for the present and the future.

"Football isn't a sport of equations and the numbers don't always tell the whole story. The team that plays better doesn't always win."

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