Giampaolo hails Samp character in Sassuolo show

Five goals, three points, one devastating display. Sampdoria’s scintillating 5-3 victory over Sassuolo was the perfect fillip after last week’s setback against Atalanta – and proof the Blucerchiati are determined to remain in the hunt for a European spot.

“What pleased me most today was the character we showed, especially against a side like Sassuolo,” Marco Giampaolo revealed after the game.

“I also liked the confidence we played with. I know what this team needs and it’s not technical or tactical – we need to bolster our self-belief.

“We got five different players on the score sheet and [Fabio] Quagliarella consolidated his position as the league’s top scorer. The result was never in doubt and there were lots of great individual performances, although there are still things we need to work on.”

The target remains clear in Giampaolo’s mind: European qualification for next season.

“If you want to make the step up you have to keep your good players, not start from scratch every year. That depends on club policy but I have my own job to do in helping the team take that last step up. I don’t know if we’ll be able to do it but I’m trying to make it happen in the minds of my players. Because it’s the mental side we need to improve. A lot of these lads are different now to when they arrived here. Now we just need the last brushstroke to complete the painting.

“We have AC Milan after the international break so we’ll use this period to get some of our injured players fit again and hopefully the lads going away will all come back in good shape.”

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