Milan 1, Lazio 1: Fly Like the Eagles

Normally, when one hears the phrase “fly like the eagles,” it brings to mind soaring through the sky, being successful, and the like. But not today. These eagles have been flying pretty low. Then they got an injury list worthy of Milan, too. So they were more like crippled eagles. But hey, at least we’ve risen to the level of crippled eagles.

Even our celebrations are provincial now.
Milan came out firing with a lot of shots early on. Whereas Petkovic seemed content to take a page out of Allegri’s Ajax playbook and hold back a little the first half. Or at least the first 20 minutes. With multiple shots from both Balotelli and Kaka, and at least one from Muntari, Milan looked convincing enough. De Sciglio was such a welcome sight, it meant we could actually function on both sides of the pitch, and he looked like he didn’t miss a step after his injury. So yeah, we looked kind of like a team. For the first 20 minutes.

But then things started getting back to normal: Muntari fouling and finally getting a yellow in the 32nd, Balotelli getting fouled, including a shoulder to the face from Cana in the 30th. But then Gabriel, having gotten a taste for blood on Sunday vs. Parma, wounded our very own Montolivo as the captain got in his way as he went for a save. And things continued to disintegrate for the rest of the first half with Radu earning a yellow for a foul on Birsa, Balotelli following up with a dirty kick on Radu, Kaka getting fouled hard… you name it, we were playing down to Lazio’s level.

Despite all of this, my halftime stats showed that Milan had 7 shots with 4 on goal, so we were definitely attacking. But Petkovic decided to make a change at the half (I wonder what that would be like?) for the ineffective Hernanes, bringing on Onazi. So either Hernanes had either single-handedly sandbagged Lazio, or this was the signal to start the attack. Or maybe a little of both.

A living legend

However, Petkovic’ plans were temporarily thwarted by a brilliant goal from Kaka, set up by Balotelli, in the 54th. 1-0 Milan. The San Siro erupted, tears were shed worldwide, I am sure, and Maldini & Shevchenko were both at the San Siro to witness the beautiful moment. Kaka had been playing beautifully all night, he and Balotelli doing well together, too, and it was just a matter of time before the magic happened.

But the magic soon faded to a mediocre battle, which included yellow cards for both Montolivo and De Sciglio, both in the 57th for separate infractions. There were random attacks at both ends, and I think I saw Balotelli helping out on defense, too (my stream actually froze a number of times, so who knows.) A deserved Cana yellow was handed out in the 62nd, but Balotelli, apparently to make things fair, also earned a deserved yellow in the 64th. His frustration was visibly building throughout the match, I felt lucky that he was on the pitch for the final whistle.

Wonder how much it hurts them to watch these performances?

Meanwhile, Petkovic’ subbing of his players could have been a lesson for Allegri, if Allegri were willing to learn. In the 68th, he pulled off Perea, who was largely ineffective, and introduced Floccari, a player actually capable of influencing or even changing the game. And that was his second sub. He was spot on, because not 3 minutes later, Ciani scored the equalizer, 1-1 all. Of course, it was a header, and of course our defense were “not focused”… or maybe not organized, motivated or properly trained to work together, etc., depending on who you believe.

Well it only took 4 minutes for Allegri to answer back with a double sub of his own. Poli, who probably should have started the match, or at least come on for Sulley “the Killer” Muntari at the half, finally did replace the ineffective Ghanaian (too little, too late.) And Birsa, your decent squad player who actually did run, pass, and shoot, was replaced by everyone’s favorite ball of clay, Matri. (No, one goal does not lose him that title, sorry.) Although to be fair, Matri was more active than Balotelli, who seems to be weighed down with every single call he doesn’t get, which renders him somewhat motionless. Still, questionable as to what exactly Allegri was trying to accomplish now that Lazio had equalized, as this move did not exactly strengthen either our defense or our attack that much.

 That's right, hold on to each other, boys. You're the brightest hope we've got right now.

Onazi fouled Kaka on the edge of the box in the 78’, for which there was not call, but Onazi was down injured for a while as a result. Gabriel was tested more frequently, tests which he successfully passed again and again. Allegri brought on Robinho in the 84th for the hero of the day, Kaka. Milan tried to pull off a last minute win with shot attempts by Zapata and Robinho, but to no avail. In the end, Allegri’s lineups and tactics saw us draw even with a team crippled with injuries and playing under even their level. Fly with the eagles, indeed.

So much talk of Allegri being sacked… again. Answered back by the man who owns hundreds of ties of all the same color that Allegri will stay through the season. Where I come from, if you get cancer, you remove the tumor, but whatever. How do they expect us fans to be able to afford to go to the stadium, buy jerseys, and buy enough alcohol to survive this kind of plague on our storied team? Oh well. One point is better than none, I guess. And it’s not as if we have a challenging schedule coming up or anything… oh, wait. I heard talks of another ritiro this week, and in my mind, I’d hoped it was talks of Allegri to retire, but no such luck. Too bad he couldn’t be sold on eBay. Well done, 7th place Lazio, looking down on 10th place Milan. But when you fly with the eagles, sometimes, you get crapped on.

This post inspired by the music of Ministry’s “Every Day is Like Halloween”

Our next match is
Milan vs. Fiorentina
Saturday, November 2 * 20:45 CET

Happy Halloween!

Reanimation complete the day before Halloween... Galliani's plan was perfect.

Milan Obsession Trick-or-Treating Tips
• Buy plenty of eggs in case you run into an Interista’s house
• Wear your Cristante jersey in case you are worried about people thinking you’re too old for trick-or-treating
• Dressing up like Montolivo is not technically cross-dressing, even if people will think you’re a 14 year-old girl.
• Do not accept candy from anyone who looks like Allegri, it is undoubtedly poisoned
• Some costumes are scary, but dressing up like Berlusconi is the scariest costume of all, you may want to spare the children the fright

Freaking scary as hell.
Milan 1, Lazio 1: Fly Like the Eagles Milan 1, Lazio 1: Fly Like the Eagles Reviewed by Elaine on 5:05 PM Rating: 5
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