Milan drew 1-1 in their latest match in the Serie A against Cremonese, once again demonstrating their ill management of the game and failing to capitalise on the home advantage. They slipped to sixth in the league and if they don’t finish inside the top four, Stefano Pioli’s future could be at risk.
The Rossoneri are heading for one of the worst title defences in Serie A history and while they weren’t expected to retain the Scudetto, at the same time, such an uninspired form was completely unforeseen at this time of the season.
While Milan have fared well in the Champions League this season, reaching the semi-finals and setting up a Milan derby clash with neighbourhood rivals Inter, manager Stefano Pioli hasn’t been able to steer his team eloquently in the league. Since January, Milan have played 18 games and they have only managed six wins, 7 draws and conceded 5 defeats.
The Milanese side have been the most vulnerable in defence in recent times among the top 7 in the league standings and are now even risking the UEFA Conference League. Currently sixth in the table, the Rossoneri are level on points with Atalanta and Roma, who look in inspired form, as teams with a vision need to be at the business end of a season.
Inter’s win against Lazio and the latest 6-0 win over lowly Verona meant they usurped their neighbourhood rivals and secured 4th place while sending their city counterparts tumbling down to 6th place in the standings.
In his report, Daniele Longo observes the three mistakes which are being committed by manager Stefano Pioli in almost every match and in turn costing Milan simultaneously.
The Italian manager hasn’t been able to manage efficiently his side this season and has failed to maintain parity between the Champions League and the Serie A. While he has structured up well and pushed his players to the brink in European competition, the fatigue and other factors are taking their toll by compromising in the league.
The second mistake committed by Pioli is that of not finding a solution to capitalise on their home advantage at the San Siro. For example, Milan were massive favourites to win versus Cremonese who will probably go down to Serie B after this season, but the team plan was such that the Rossoneri found it hard to put together their paces, and that too in their home, ultimately settling for a draw. The same happened in the matches against Empoli and Bologna.
The third error is that Pioli hasn’t been able to churn the full potential out of this squad this term. Players like Yacine Adli and others are raring to go for an opportunity. Undoubtedly, they possess a young and highly potential squad but the manager’s rigidity in selecting the best line-up in most performances is costing the whole club, not only in the points tally but making Milan an unfavourable destination for prospects around Europe.
Trambak Bhattacherjee | GIFN