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Brescia v. Milan Preview: Don’t Put All Your Eggs in One Basket

Here's hoping there are 3 points inside these chocolate eggs.




This Easter, Milan are in the hunt for the Scudetto. In between Good Friday and Easter, we play Brescia away. Yes, it’s 19th place Brescia. Easy, right? Don’t be so quick to put your eggs in one basket. A team fighting relegation is far more dangerous than a team who has already secured a Champion’s League spot. Allegri is wise to respect Brescia and to have rested a lot of players on Wednesday so we can have a better chance of beating the feisty relegation candidates on their turf.

When last we met our Rondinelle (Little Sparrows), it was early December at the San Siro. Boateng scored his first goal for Milan, then Robinho & Ibra each added one for a 3-0 lead in the first half an hour that stood as a convincing win. So this game should be just as easy, right?

Let’s not count our chickens before they are hatched. Their last 5 games were D-L-W-D-L, the first draw being against Inter. Having taken only 5 points from 5 matches and sliding down to the bottom of the table, Coach Iaquini will do his best to take 3 points from us.

Their squad is full of surprises. Caracciolo has been on fire, he’s got 10 goals, and they are often very unexpected and spectacular in form. He is very dangerous, we will do well to mark him. Less prolific in scoring with only 5 goals is Diamanti, but he does not play like a relegation-bound striker and must also be marked well.

Their keeper, Arcari, is pretty decent. Sure, he averages just over 1 goal per game, but he has been making some very nice saves of late, so we will need to take a lot of shots, preferably of the scoring variety.

Zebina is suffering from the Kaladze effect

In their defense is a story that never ceases to amaze me. Do you remember Kaka Kaladze? He played for Milan and toward the end of his time there, his name was a curse word? I mean, he tried to make up for it last year by scoring 2 own goals when his native Georgia played Italy. But nothing could ever make up for the consistent, blundering mistakes he made, or the fact that he was played so much when he played so very badly. Then he went to Genoa and plays quite well for them. How does that even work? I mean I have theories, but it is ridiculous.

Well Brescia has Juve’s Kaladze in the form of defender Jonathan Zebina. He was started in virtually every game his last season at Juve to the horror of Juve fans worldwide. Such was their probably justified hatred for him that one fan actually ran up and hit him on the back of the head when he was getting on the bus. (To be fair, he said and did rude things to his own fans at an EL match.) So he moved to Brescia, and due to the Kaladze effect, is having a pretty good season. (Read: not playing like a relegation-bound defender.) None of this makes any sense, but Iaquini will likely start him with Bega and Zoboli as the 3 in a 3-5-2 formation.

Their midfield should look something like Hetemaj, Kone, C. Zanetti, and wingers Accardi and Zambelli on either side. So look for them to try to clog the midfield and also be wary of quick counter attacks should we lose possession there.

Boateng celebrates his first Milan goal v. Brescia, maybe he can bag another?

I think whomever Allegri fields in the middle (Gattuso, Van Bommel, Pirlo with Boateng behind the strikers?) will be able to dominate possession, as usual. And I trust that our fullbacks will close down any threat from the wings. Having rested Abate and Zambrotta, I expect them to be up to this task.

I would love for Inzaghi to at least sub on for a while, but all of the chatter thus far leads me to believe he will not be declared match fit. So our hopes lie mainly with Cassano and Robinho, and between the two of them, they should be able to create enough chances to give us the 3 points. And, of course, they are welcome to share the scoring opportunities with other teammates, too!!

Based on reports earlier this week, Abbiati will be back, which is ever so comforting. And he should have Yepes and Silva in front of him to make his job much easier. I will say that for all of the chances Yepes has had to head in a sweet goal, he is due to make one happen on a set piece or from play.

Let me just say one more time that this match should be taken very seriously, every 3 points we get takes us that much closer to securing the Scudetto. So while indulging in whatever cultural delicacies you typically enjoy this holiday, don’t be complacent about this match. Milan need our support 100% for every match, and perhaps even more for a feisty little relegation-bound team from Lombardy. Forza Milan e Buona Pasqua!



This post was brought to you while listening to a pre-match adrenaline mix that included The Cult, The Dead Kennedys, Filter, Front 242, Metallica, NIN, Prodigy, Rage, Sex Pistols, Suicidal Tendencies, and STP.