Week 16: Milan – Sassuolo
Milan scored three times for the first time this season, on week 15. That stat shows, more than anything, why Milan has one of the lowest goals scored numbers in Serie A. On week 15 the final third looked more vibrant, active and showed more promise. Paradoxically it can not be said that any of the offensive players had an exceptional game. Piatek, Suso et al are nowhere near top form. Milan’s first was a penalty when Mattia Bani had his legs tangled with the Polish striker. Hernandez shot in Suso’s assist for Milan’s second to continue his offensive form, however before the end of the half a corner nodded off his leg for an own goal. Right after the break Bonaventura also continued his stellar form to make it 3-1 before a not too dissimilar penalty was awarded to Bologna and converted for a 3-2 final score.
Progress but lots left to do. Pioli talked about seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. We shall see.
Sassuolo have won only once since the beginning of November and for Milan this is an opportunity to win a third game in a row. The previous two wins almost guarantee little or no change to the starting line up. Conti, Musacchio, Romagnoli and Hernandez line up behind Kessie, Bennacer and Bonaventura who in turn hold down the fort for Suso, Piatek and Calhanoglu. Changes are rare when Milan is losing so the likes of Laeo, Krunic and Paqueta are not likely to get starts when the team is getting wins. For now the aforementioned trio and Castillejo will be on the bench and get minutes only here and there.
As January gets closer and the possibility of Ibra or other re-enforcements nears it will be fascinating to see how far up the table Milan can climb before they arrive.
Follow the match, featuring sometimes Milan killer Domenico Berardi and former Milan player Manuel Locatelli, as it happens, on the forum.
This week also marks the 120th birthday of Milan. Forza Milan.