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Optimism Agenda

OFFICIAL: The Milan Obsession Podcast has signed Jonathan to a longterm contract as cohost. Details of the contract were undisclosed.
Following Leonardo’s example, we have signed a permanent cohost, and expect the podcast to also qualify for the Champions League of podcasts this season. So while we were under the influence of extreme optimism, we previewed the new season with unicorns and rainbows.
Recent posts

The Red and Black Blues

As the clock ran down on the transfer window yesterday, there was a palpable sigh from Milan fans, and maybe a few tears, too. “The dream” was only that, and for the eighth consecutive year, Milan did not reinforce properly at the central midfielder position. Milinkovic-Savic was not coming. Not even the fans’ second choice, Rabiot. And as if that wasn’t enough to be sad about, Our Sunday game vs. Genoa was postponed after 39 people tragically lost their lives when a bridge in Genoa suddenly collapsed. It’s enough to give anyone the red and black blues.

The Milan Season Preview You’ve Been Waiting For

This is the post where I write about what to expect for this season. And once again, this season is all about expectations. After the past seven years or more at Milan, fans should have learned to temper our expectations. But with all of the changes this summer, I fear the worst for unrealistic fans. The mercato is still not quite closed, either, so that isn’t helping the expectation levels. But it is the beginning of the season, and that is always exciting, one way or the other.

Mercato of Procrastination

Milan have had a very unique summer. If you call changing ownership by default to a hedge fund and having a European ban overturned by the CAS “unique.” But those events directly impacted our mercato, more specifically, the club’s ability to make any moves in the mercato in or out. And with everything being delayed so late in the summer, it has fallen on our new management, minus an actual CEO, to work out a mercato of procrastination.

Real Madrid 3, AC Milan 1: Royal Rumble

In Spanish, “Real” translates to “Royal.” And Real Madrid have been successful at living up to their name over the years. This match was no exception, with quality play throughout and three excellent and deserved goals for the win. But something that struck me about this match is the way they respect their opponents. No whining and diving like their Catalonian adversaries. Just respecting their opponents by playing their best, then respecting the game, the ref, everything. I was impressed with the level of class, even if it was a royal rumble.

Trofeo Santiago Bernabeu: Glory Days

Tonight Milan visit Madrid to face our biggest European opponent, Real Madrid. In our glory days, Milan were Real Madrid’s biggest challenger for Champions League Titles. In 2007, when Milan last won the Champions League for our seventh title, Real Madrid had nine titles. But while Milan fell into the abyss of mismanagement, Los Blancos won four more titles, including the last three in a row. However their glory days look to be in jeopardy now that their marquee player, Cristiano Ronaldo, left the club for Serie A. While their roster is still far more competitive than Milan’s, this friendly could be a little more interesting in his absence.

Podcast: Return of the King

The long awaited Return of the King, Paolo Maldini, has finally occurred. I have a theory as to why, and it all started with one lucky fan. He won a chance to meet the team, but ended up meeting Gattuso instead. After that, Leonardo was hired on. Then Higuain and Caldara came to Milan. And finally, the return of Maldini. That is a whole lot of luck.

The Cristiano Ronaldo Effect

When I heard the news that Cristiano Ronaldo was going to Juve, my second thought was that it would mean greater access to Serie A fans for all of us. (The first thought, of course, being that they should just award the Scudetto in August before the season kicks off.) It turns out that at least for American fans, it is going to work out very well for us. Yesterday, it was announced that ESPN has purchased the exclusive rights to Serie A beginning this season. With far more resources than the shambolic BeIN Sports USA, this means that we will all have far more access to our games. I like to call it the Cristiano Ronaldo effect.

Maldini Day

We have been waiting for this day since May of 2009. The return of the living legend, Paolo Maldini, to the club of his family, the club of his life, and the club of his heart. There are so few one-club players anymore, but not only did he only ever play for Milan, his father played and coached for Milan, and in completing the Maldini Dynasty, his sons have both played for Milan’s youth teams. After being mistreated by disgusting and reprehensible Milan fans during his San Siro farewell, blocked from joining the club by the tyrant Galliani, and turning down offers to return by Yonghong Li’s initial investment group because he didn’t believe in their project, he is finally coming home. Happy Maldini Day!

AC Milan 1, Barcelona 0: Summer of 69

One out of three isn’t bad, right? Milan scraped through 90 minutes of Barcelona attack to win their final match in the International Champions Cup Tournament this year, having lost their first two. Donnarumma kept the team in the match, since the rest of the team were constantly pinned back by what was largely Barcelona’s youth team. And finally, in the last play of stoppage time, Silva stepped up and scored the lone goal, winning a game Barcelona should have easily won themselves. Ironically, he had just handed over his number nine to the more experienced newcomer, Higuain, and had just chosen his new number today, ahead of this match: number 69. His last gasp heroics make me wonder: will he be leaving the club this year? Or was this his way of telling the world that this will be his Milan breakthrough year, beginning with the Summer of 69?