AC Milan defender Daniele Bonera was pleased to have come through an "important test" in yesterday's goalless draw at Bologna.
The Italy international made his first league start in almost a year at the Stadio Renato Dall'Ara and helped I Rossoneri keep a clean sheet, although the stalemate allowed Milan's city rivals Inter to open up a 10-point lead at the Serie A summit.
Bonera said afterwards: "I am back after 11 months. It was a reward for my perseverance and all the sacrifices I have made in this long time away from the field. My performance today was a demonstration of the fact that I'm fine. This was an important test for me."
Milan could have snatched all three points but were twice frustrated by the woodwork. "The team was a bit unlucky on some occasions," added Bonera. "We just think about playing well, think about ourselves and do not look at the standings too much."
Debutant Mancini, brought in on loan from Inter during the January transfer window, was encouraged by his first appearance for the Rossoneri but also disappointed he could not guide his new club to a much-needed win.
"After all this time it was nice to play a whole match," he said. "Unfortunately, my first game did not bring a victory. The team tried everything and created some great chances, but unfortunately we were unable to take them. We're still on track and I think with this group we can do something really important."