Milan 2, Novara 1: Perfect Ending

So many emotions this week. The devastation of a second derby loss, followed by player after player hanging up their Milan boots. The game was supposed to be meaningless, but for fans it became our last chance to see our Milan legends. Suddenly, it was the most important match of the season.

The football was not our best, in fact it was painful to watch after chance after wasted chance was squandered, and Novara were clearly more than happy to spoil our farewell party. Ambrosini, one of the legends who will be continuing as captain, wasn’t even on the bench, but rather in street clothes. It was hard to see.

And as if the missed opportunities weren’t enough of a reminder of how our season was, in the 10th minute, Boateng was injured and was subbed off for Flamini. 10 minutes later and with our defense seemingly already on vacation, Novara dampened spirits even more with a goal by Garcia in the 20th. 0-1 Novara But in the 25th, Gattuso painfully reminded him who he was and left his legacy in the form of a bruise, I’m sure, on Garcia’s leg.

Aquilani, looking very likely to be sent back to Liverpool now, earned his token yellow card in the 39th for a sloppy foul. I will miss him, but not his defending. But after the half, that was just a memory, as Flamini scored the 4.5 million euro equalizer in the 56th. 1-1. For a player who has not yet decided if he is staying or going, it was a good “just in case” goal. And it was nice to see something for our 19 shots, only 3 of which were on goal. It hurt to watch the ones who were leaving miss shot after shot, Flamini’s goal felt like it made up for at least a few of those.

But it was in the 67th that the crowd went crazy and the Curva belted out that song… again. In the 67th, it was a very emotional subbing of Supper Pippo for Cassano. Everyone on Milan did everything they could to get him the ball in the box, but Novara was clearly not going to help on this one. What he needed was for Nesta to come on, so in the 81st, he did. And that was all they needed to make beautiful magic. Seedorf crossed it in and Pippo controlled it with his chest and slotted it in cleanly past Fontana. 2-1 Milan.

The stadium exploded with delight. I bet even the Novara fans were in tears and screaming. Everyone went crazy, and Velotta, our ref on the day, knew better than to card anyone for timewasting. This was how it was supposed to end, the legends leaving their mark on the pitch. And in the 94th, Gattuso closed a chapter in Milan history with his trademark tackle on Rigoni.

The legends took the pitch for their final curtain call with their children, or in Pippo’s case, his nephew, Tomasso, whom he is very close to. For women, this is like PFW or Porn for Women™, as nothing is more attractive as seeing players with their kids. But such a sweet way to send them off, with their families surrounding them. I hope all of those kids never forget the piece of history they witnessed on this day. We never wanted it to end, but if it had to, Pippo scoring a goal for the last time in the Rossoneri jersey was the perfect ending.

Words alone could never express what I felt, what you felt, what the crowd felt, or what the players and the club felt. But I will try to sum it up with a few pictures. So many smiles, so many tears, and at the end of the day, the players left the San Siro, many for the last time.

Ambrosini overwhelmed by saying goodbye

Zambrotta, surrounded by teammates, is overwhelmed

It was just too much emotion to contain

Such passion, even in the end

Will there ever be another Nesta?

Pippo accepts a shirt from the Curva, his 11 year love

A player for the fans, with the perfect ending.

Grazie ragazzi per il vostro cuore, la vostra grinta, ed i ricordi.

This post inspired by the songs of the Curva Sud
Milan 2, Novara 1: Perfect Ending Milan 2, Novara 1: Perfect Ending Reviewed by Elaine on 2:03 PM Rating: 5
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