Caicedo และ Mac Allister สมควรเล่นในอีกระดับ – De Zerbi
Brighton boss Roberto de Zerbi says Moises Caicedo and Alexis Mac Allister “deserve to play in another level” amid interest from rival clubs.
The Seagulls have qualified for Europe for the first time in their history but De Zerbi says he would not begrudge either player if they decide to leave.
“When I work, I think for myself, I think for my club – but I think still for the players,” said De Zerbi.
“The players have one career, one life and we can’t decide for them.”
Brighton rejected a bid from Arsenal of around £70m for Ecuador international Caicedo in January, while World Cup-winning Argentine Mac Allister is heavily linked with a move to Liverpool this summer.
The south coast secured European football with victory over Southampton on Sunday and De Zerbi hopes it will entice the midfielders to stay.
Asked if Wednesday’s final home game of the season against champions Manchester City would be the pair’s last in Brighton shirts at the Amex Stadium, De Zerbi said: “It can be the last game but I don’t know.
“They can have the possibility to change [clubs] because they deserve to play in another level.
“I don’t know what Tony [Bloom, Brighton owner] can decide. But now we can offer them the possibility to play in Europe because our level is bigger now. We can offer them one possibility more.”
‘We have to try it’
Brighton will almost certainly end the season in sixth place in the Premier League – their highest finish in the top flight – because of their superior goal difference over seventh-placed Aston Villa.
A place in the Europa Conference League is already assured, and a point against City will mean Brighton qualify for the more prestigious Europa League, but De Zerbi says his players will be aiming for all three.
“The focus is to play seriously,” said the Italian, whose team finish the season at Villa on Sunday.
“We want to play in the Europa League and to play in the Europa League we have to make another point. We can’t start the game to make one point. We have to think to win the game.
“We have a big, big, big target – bigger than Conference League because we expect Conference League.
“If we have the possibility to play in a more prestigious competition, we have to try it.”
Speaking earlier on Tuesday, Manchester City boss said his opposite number is “one of the most influential managers in the last 20 years”.
De Zerbi was equally respectful of the Spaniard when given his chance to respond, saying the City boss helped him settle into life in England.
“I can’t forget that before I arrived here, I received his call and he helped me a lot in the first period,” De Zerbi said of Guardiola. “He was very nice with me.
“My opinion is he is the best coach in the Premier League and the best coach in the last 30 years. It’s my opinion but I think a lot of people think like me.”