By Terry Daley
ROME, Jan 18 (Reuters) - Clarence Seedorf promised a more attacking style of play for AC Milan on the eve of his first match in charge of the ailing giants at home to Hellas Verona on Sunday.
The former Dutch international midfielder returned to Milan, where he played for a decade, to take over from Massimiliano Allegri with the team lying 11th in Serie A, 10 points away from the European places.
"For me it's not a question of one, two or three attackers, it's about a philosophy of how to play. My plan will be to have lots of players in the opposition area," Seedorf told a news conference on Saturday.
"Milan's best performances in recent years, for example against Barcelona, took place when we were able to stay in the opponent's half.
"It is easier to get a result when you play good football. I've seen many of the Milan games so far and I think they deserve more points than they currently have."
If Seedorf wants to get the team firing he will need to get the best out of controversial striker Mario Balotelli.
After a phenomenal start to his career at the club last season, Balotelli has slipped back into old habits and has picked up more cards than his 11 goals in all competitions this term.
Balotelli said on Friday he was "very happy" with Seedorf's appointment, adding the Dutchman had inspired instant faith from him.
"Mario is a really sweet lad. I knew him a bit before and we all know how much quality he has. I'm here to help him grow. He seems very keen to work with me - I have faith in him," said the new Milan boss.
"I still need to get to know the team and do it as quickly as possible. However with the desire that I have seen I'm convinced that things will start to go much better than before." (Editing by Tony Jimenez)