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Montella calls on Fiorentina to focus

Sitting fifth in the Serie A, Fiorentina enter the derby at the Stadio Artemio Franchi on the back of a 2-1 UEFA Europa League win over Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk on Thursday.

The short turnaround has Montella worried his team may not be mentally ready for the Derby dell'Appennino.

"Bologna have some excellent players and it can be a psychological trap because we played in the Europa League on Thursday night," Montella said.

"We need to prepare the game on a psychological level as well as a tactical one.

"It is a dangerous match and a difficult one. The team is so far responding well to playing every three days.

"Of course, now the Europa League becomes a different competition with a much higher level of difficulty."

Montella believes expectations surrounding his side have grown too much, saying they were never Serie A contenders.

The 39-year-old coach has challenged his team to start conceding fewer goals, with their tally of 20 in the league the worst of the top five.

"We are conceding a few too many goals and need to improve on that, even if our objective remains to score more goals than our opponents," Montella said.

"It's not that I prefer winning 4-3 to 1-0 but this comes with time. I think that if we defended deeper, we wouldn't win. This team was built with certain characteristics.

"We are happy to have our philosophy, our identity and that our fans appreciate us for that. Some want to paint us as a side meant to win the Scudetto, but that is not the case."