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Montella at ease over AC Milan future

Vincenzo Montella insists he is still planning for the future as AC Milan head coach despite the club's poor run of room.

Milan were challenging for Champions League football in the first half of the Serie A campaign, but have fallen out of contention following an underwhelming spell after the mid-season break.

A run of four matches without a win, including a 4-1 home drubbing against Roma last weekend, has also seen Milan's Europa League hopes take a hit and they are sixth in the table, just three points above rivals Inter.

With the Rossoneri having been bought out by a Chinese consortium recently there have been suggestions Montella's position as coach will come under scrutiny if Milan's poor run continues and they face a crunch match against fifth-place Atalanta on Saturday.

But Montella claims he has no concerns over his position, telling a pre-match news conference: "I know the club hold me in great esteem, and they have said this publicly. 

"I am happy to be here, I know that when you are going through a negative run of form you can be criticised. Playing to win is not a burden, it's something that stimulates me. 

"AC Milan are a glorious club. With the management, we talk a lot and we are planning the future."

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Montella is weighing up whether to throw in captain Riccardo Montolivo from the start against Atalanta.

The midfielder sustained a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in October, but has been on the bench for Milan's past three matches.

"Riccardo is an important player, very experienced and we missed him a lot. He's fit to play, but I don't know whether he is ready to play for 90 minutes," he added. 

"Although, in this case, motivation is important. I know I can count on him and might even decide to field him from the start."