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Showing posts from September, 2013

Champions League Group Stage: Ajax-AC Milan Preview: Time to Focus

With the wailing and gnashing of teeth getting louder and louder after every poor Milan performance, the pressure is greater, even if the squad is less than. But Tuesday, Balotelli is eligible (and likely anxious) to play. Montolivo & El Shaarawy are going to Amsterdam, whether or not they will feature, and it is the Champions League: the one place where Milan sometimes resembles Milan this season. So it’s time to shake off the mediocrity and worse, and live up to the colors. Time to focus.

Milan 1, Sampdoria 0: For the Curva

Milan really didn’t play any better tonight than they have been. It’s just that Birsa was new around here and didn’t realize he wasn’t supposed to score. But it’s just as well, because tonight belonged to the missing… the Curva Sud. Having been banned in a bizarre decision intended to take all of the fun out of the sport for fans everywhere, it was only fitting that the most mediocre and struggling Milan I can remember would give them the win. So even though the three points were desperately needed, this one was for the Curva.

Milan vs. Sampdoria: Gamepost

Milan-Sampdoria Preview: Running to Stand Still

I’m sure there are words I should be typing, but frankly, it’s been over 3 years with Allegri at the helm, management have switched sides, and it’s hard to have anything redeeming to look forward to tomorrow. According to Allegri, every match they have played they have played well, even if it has looked incredibly different to everyone else. So tomorrow we welcome 17th placed Sampdoria to the San Siro. A situation we would normally be salivating about and placing odds on how many goals we could score against them. Instead, our Curva Sud will likely be empty (as of this writing, anyway,) and our hearts still bruised from recent results. With the other big teams performing well, even if we pull of the win, it will seem like we are just running to stand still.

Bologna 3, Milan 3: YOLO

Over the past three years, I have really learned a lot about Allegri. For example, I have learned that he has long since run out of ideas, and now that he has also nearly run out of players, that simply becomes impossible to ignore. Also, that he is using this season to teach his toddler son how to count, so we can’t earn too many points too quickly. But also I have learned that he thrives by living on the edge. Always keeping the game until the last minute, and then only pulling the draw, so that his job will be forever questioned. I mean Gattuso was just sacked for only earning seven points in six games. If that is unacceptable in Serie B, how does Allegri do it in Serie A? Easy: YOLO.

Podcast: Unlucky September

For ten seasons now, Massimiliano Allegri has been coaching professionally, and for all ten seasons, his teams have always started slow. This week, however, he declared the reason for this, that September is simply not lucky for him. Well thanks to his unlucky September, Milan fans everywhere must also endure yet another Unlucky September. Thank goodness it’s almost October. I wonder how his luck will be then?

Milan 1, Napoli 2: Almost Just Isn’t Good Enough

This result should not have been a surprise to anyone. Napoli had a fully fit, fully available squad and have been playing great football, in addition to coming into the game at the top of the table. Milan, on the other hand, have been suffering from that Slow Start Allegri™ syndrome yet again, and had Injury Armageddon™ on top of it. Coming into the match in 9th place, we couldn’t afford to lose, but with the players we had available, we really didn’t have the quality to win, either. And although our boys gave it a fantastic attempt, once again, almost just wasn’t good enough.

Milan vs. Napoli: Gamepost

Benitez starting Insigne is like giving us a half man advantage… (not sure even that is enough.)

Milan-Napoli Preview: The Perfect Storm

When the Serie A schedule was released, this match gave me a sense of forboding. Then we qualified for the Champions League, and with that additional schedule to deal with, it seemed even more frightening. Add in the Injury Armageddon™, the way we sneaked by Celtic on Wednesday and Slow Start Allegri’s™ magic so far in the league, and this match is shaping up to be the Perfect Storm.

Champions League: Milan 2, Celtic 0: The Most Unlikely of Heroes

The lead up to this game played out like a tragedy as player after starting player fell to injury. It was as if a Sharknado had hit our starting eleven. I know I was dreading kickoff, and more nervous than I’d been in a while for any game. But as I pointed out in my match preview, this is when Allegri shines. Somehow, he gets the most out of his provincial players in an injury crisis, he almost always gets the tactics right. If I didn’t know any better, I’d encourage him to apply for a position as the head of an emergency organization like FEMA here in the US, he is so good at these crisis situations. He is an unlikely hero that way, one of many today who gave Milan the win and the precious three points.

Champions League –AC Milan vs. Celtic: Gamepost

Milan may be down, but we’re not out

Champions League Group Stage AC Milan vs. Celtic Wednesday, September 18 • 20:45 CET (2:45 EDT) This match may be broadcast on Prime Tkt in the U.S. (check your local listings) Check comments for streams prior to the match

Self-medication highly recommended for this match

Also watch the all new UEFA Youth League AC Milan Primavera vs. Celtic U19 Wednesday, September 18 • 15:00 CET (9am EDT) This match is being streamed live on

Champions League Group Stage: Milan-Celtic: The Walking Dead

This is not how it was supposed to be. We were supposed to come into the Group Stage, having had a lot of luck to get here, and have our freshly reinforced team from the Summer mercato to face off whomever we drew. In this case, Celtic. Playing at the San Siro. A game we were supposed to win. But after Saturday’s debacle against Torino and the ensuing Injury Armageddon™, nothing is certain anymore. Other than the fact that Milan are the walking dead.

Injury Crisis

Milan have an insanely ridiculous injury crisis, everyone knows that. But what some people don’t realize is that injury crises aren’t limited to the players on the pitch. There are often casualties right under our noses, some visible, some not. The question is, do you contribute to them or are you helping to prevent them?

Torino 2, Milan 2: Super Smash Bros. Brawl

I blame myself for the violence. I painted Torino defender Kamil Glik as Public Enemy No. 1, when it was Milan who brought the brawling to the table. We bruised and bloodied them up, sent them off on a stretcher, and snatched two goals in the final minutes of the game to steal the point when they probably deserved all three. Worst of all, it was not even good football. In fact, it resembled a giant brawl more than a football game for most of the match.

Torino vs. Milan: Gamepost

Raging Bull 

Torino-Milan Preview: Taking the Bull by the Horns

The race for the Scudetto has begun, and Milan are already in the back seat after having lost our first game, three points behind the other contenders. So we are already in the position of needing to win every game. And that includes away games to last year’s 16th place team, Torino. So we have no choice but to give those bulls a run for their money.

Poll: Allegri’s Conundrum

Milan’s injury status has really kicked us while we’re down. With Bonera, Silvestre, Abate, and De Sciglio out, and Zapata only just returning from Colombia today, his options for a back 4 are exceptionally thin. It’s hard to see him trusting the 18 year-old Vergara at center back, which means Zaccardo may be the only center back available left to pair with Mexes. If Urby or Constant are covering the left side, who else can play on the right? Rumors say Poli is prepared to do so. But I never pretend to know what Allegri will do anymore, so I will let you, the Milan Obsession readers take a guess.
 Allegri: The Video

Podcast: Kaká’s Orphans

The past two weeks have been so busy for Milan: qualifying for the Champions League, closing out the mercato with surprise signings, and now the brief lull of an International Break. In fact, there was so much going on, this podcast has been “Super Sized” to fit it all in. But above all of the craziness, one thing stands out: The return to the San Siro of Kaká’s orphans. As you will hear in the podcast, they are intrinsically linked to every aspect of Milan’s success this year, at least according to Galliani.

Valter Birsa: Under the Radar

The devastating news came in swiftly and without any warning: Bakaye Traoré would be traded to Genoa for some midfielder called Valter Birsa. After losing so many beloved players last summer, now we were swapping a cherished 27 year-old midfielder with a 27 year-old winger that we didn’t even know. Or did we? It seems he is actually a familiar foe, he has just always flown under the radar.

Let Them Eat Cake

At Milan, in good times and bad, there is one thing you can count on: cake. For every occasion, there is always cake. Not unlike Marie Antoinette, Galliani seems to think he is above the judgment of the fans. He often directly insults us and publicly chastises us. Never taking responsibility for his actions, never seeming to understand the consequences of selling a popular player, for example, he is as out of touch with the fans as Marie Antoinette was with her subjects. And it cost her her head. But that’s okay, because Galliani seems to think that by offering up cake, he can sugar coat everything. “Let them eat cake.”

A Farewell to the Legends

Just over a year ago now, Milan said goodbye to so many players, including i Senatori. But in the final days of the mercato this summer, we lost some players who will forever live in Milan lore as true legends of the Rossoneri. So much so that any one of them could have won the Bidone d’Oro (“Golden Trashcan”) award multiple times, except that they weren’t necessarily on the pitch enough to prove their worth. As difficult as it was to say goodbye to them, I found it more difficult to find a fitting tribute to them. So I used poetic license, and I hope that I have been able to do their careers at Milan justice. (Kleenex optional.)

Milan Mercato: Reinforcement or Reanimation?

Even before we qualified for the Champions League Group Stage, many Milan fans were eagerly looking for reinforcements in the mercato. Having been well versed in the new FFP compliant, commitment to youth, and squad-reducing ways of Milan, we scoured the transfer market for young players who could come cheaply and fill the spots we needed reinforcing. We talked excitedly about players who only a year ago we never would have considered “Milan quality.” But then things started to turn sour when injuries awoke the old Galliani, and we started adding squad players instead of buying champions. And, in the final hours of the mercato, Galliani achieved his greatest accomplishment: the resurrection of a career, the reanimation of a Milan legend.

Milan 3, Cagliari 1: For Allegri

There was much news about transfers off the pitch today. In fact, it seemed a distraction for many fans. But on the pitch there was the matter of dispensing with Cagliari. With all of the turmoil of the mercato, Matri and Birsa moving to Milan, Boateng and Antonini moving away from Milan, but most importantly, Traoré staying at Milan after a failed transfer/loan to both Genoa and Olympiakos, it was a miracle that anyone could focus at all. And while this match wasn’t the prettiest of wins, the boys were able to stay focused and pull it off. A win in the second week of the season for a manager who last year at this time was on his way to the worst start for Milan in 70 years. So it was actually a massive accomplishment for the one we call Slow Start Allegri™, and against his former club, too. So this one should be remembered as a win... for Allegri.

Milan vs. Cagliari: Gamepost

Cagliari are going to need a good supply of body bags.