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Soccer-Fiorentina boss counting on experience in Europa Conference final

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(Reuters) – Fiorentina coach Vincenzo Italiano says his side gained vital experience in last month’s Coppa Italia final defeat to Inter Milan that will stand them in good stead when they take on West Ham United in the Europa Conference League final on Wednesday.

Italiano’s side will face their second final of the season after they lost 2-1 to Inter in Rome.

It will be their first European final since they lost to Juventus in the UEFA Cup in 1990, and Italiano is convinced the outcome will depend on their mentality and the way they approach the game.

“Compared to the final in Rome we gained a bit of experience. If there is something we learn from it, it’s not the result, it’s how we played it. We realised that one mistake in a final is worth 10 in a normal match,” he told a press conference on Tuesday.

Fiorentina, who finished eighth in the Serie A standings, reached the Europa Conference League final after Antonin Barek’s late goal in extra time gave them a 3-1 win over Basel that secured a 4-3 aggregate victory.

The Italian side have played 16 games en route to the final which Italiano described as “long and difficult”.

“Tomorrow we will be looking to maintain our playing philosophy. I am focused on how to prepare for this match, I am the orchestra conductor and I have to be brave and not get carried away by emotions,” he said.

(Reporting by Angelica Medina in Mexico City; Editing by Toby Davis)

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