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Coppa Italia – Milan 3, Reggina 0: One to Forget

Don’t let the pretty score deceive you, Milan played some absolutely horrible football tonight, we were just lucky that Reggina didn’t finish very well. We missed the beautiful crosses and great runs of De Sciglio, the goals and assists and defense of El Shaarawy, the stops and passing of De Jong and Ambrosini, and whatever the hell it is that Boateng contributes. And yet, we did manage to pull it off without them, and by a good margin, too. So it wasn’t all that bad. Let’s just chalk this one up to luck and call it one to forget.

Celebrating in the snow

The entire first half was truly forgettable. Perhaps our best effort was from Pazzini in the 15th, and Facchin had a great save to stop that one. And Reggina’s best effort hit the back of the net in the 24th, but was called off for offside. Also worth mentioning is Antonini’s new haircut. It’s almost as if he wanted to be more presentable for a job interview or something… nah, that’s probably just wishful thinking on my part. But seriously, though we took some shots, the first half was a complete snoozefest.

We maintained 60% possession, which is more of a compliment to Reggina. Because we held them to only 7 shots, just 2 on goal, but they still managed 40% possession. And I’m not sure if this is to our credit or not, but we took 25 shots, with 10 on goal. So it was simply a matter of time before we converted, and not really that surprising that we scored three goals.

Who need strikers when you have Yepes?

The first goal came in the 51st, a header by Yepes. 1-0 Milan. Playing with three strikers, of course it took a center back to break the deadlock. But to be fair, the boys were playing with a little more urgency in the second half. Shortly thereafter, in the 54th, Robinho was subbed off for Niang. I always wondered what the future looked like, now I know. From this point forward, Milan got as many shots off as possible, and even Abate, in the 67th took a shot that was saved by the under fire Facchin. Incidentally, Facchin is a Milan youth product, I bet he wishes he could have stayed on after tonight.

The yellow card tally looked something like this: Bombagi had gotten one in the 45th, then Freddi got one in the 71st. And Strasser earned the final one for a rough foul in the 76th, after which he was immediately subbed off for Muntari, who wasn’t expected back until next week. Good that Allegri was surveying his options in the wake of De Jong’s injury and subsequent surgery.

The "player for the future" scores in the here and now

In the 79th, Niang scored his debut Milan goal. 2-0 Milan. El Shaarawy was beaming from the bench, love the sportsmanship. And more impressively, Niang only took 2 shots to score one goal. That is the kind of accuracy we need. Contrast that to the third goalscoreer on the night, Pazzini, who scored his goal just one minute later to make it 3-0 Milan. He had to work a little harder, taking 7 shots to score the goal. Although to be fair, most of his shots were saved by the very capable Facchin.

In the 84th, Allegri brought on and apparently healed Acerbi for Yepes, and Yepes got an ovation from the fans, he is such a beast. It was good to see Acerbi get a few minutes, though, I have high hopes for that one. And Muntari had a trademark rocket from distance deflected just wide in the 88th, hopefully it was just a warning shot indicating many more to come as he becomes match fit and gets more playing time.

Never thought I'd be so very happy to see snake eyes

The best part about this match was getting to see some players we don’t typically see or those who are coming back from injuries. On the flip side, being forced to see Antonini and Flamini might have been the worst part. But still, a lopsided score that doesn’t reflect how well Reggina played in most areas, they simply lacked the finishing power to put this one away.

And now we face Juventus in Torino on January 9th. Will that be the end of our quest? Most likely so. But at least we get an extra chance to bring out the worst in those shameful Juventus fans. Oh, wait… Well at least I get an extra smacktalk week here. And hopefully, if Allegri does truly aspire to lift the Coppa Italia this season, he’ll play a full strength squad for that one. For today, though, thanks boys, for the victory and the convincing scoreline. And now for some birthday celebrations vs. Pescara on Sunday!!


This post inspired by the music of Enya


Our next match is
Milan vs. Pescara
Sunday, December 16 • 15:00 CET (9am EST)