AC Milan teammates have jumped to the defence of Alberto Gilardino after his inconsistent start to the season.

"We are all firmly behind him because he is a striker with unique characteristics," Paolo Maldini told Sky Sports Italia. "He should relax in the knowledge that he has complete support from the whole team and the club's staff."

Daniele Bonera also said: "So many people focus on his lack of goals, but he did really well against Fiorentina and needs to be appreciated for the selfless work he does."