Milan 1, Genoa 1: Fans Behaving Badly

There was a game. We drew, with Genoa playing on 10 men for 55 minutes. We took 39 shots, with 10 on goal, and only the one goal. And as horrible as that sounds, there was a circus that made that terrible, horrific performance look not so bad after all. I speak, of course of the Curva Sud, aka fans behaving badly.

The players taking Milan's #HoldTogether hashtag literally 

Nevermind that Kaká got the game going with a beautiful goal in the 4th minute to put Milan up 1-0. De Jong had a perfect ball forward, Kaká controlled it beautifully with one touch, and then with a beautiful strike, beat Perin, who was otherwise perfect on the night in spite of a barrage of efforts from Milan. Nevermind that, as expected, Gilardino punished us with a penalty in the 8th minute and celebrated like there was no tomorrow, making the score 1-1.

It doesn’t matter that yellows were given to Urby, who conceded the penalty, Zapata, who will miss the next match, and Bonera. Or that, when Manfredini was red carded in the 35th minute, Balotelli’s penalty was poor and easily saved, his second in a row after such an amazing streak of perfect penalties. Forget about the fact that Mexes had some mysterious eye trouble and spent the match at the hospital, or that Muntari was injured and will be out for an unknown period of time.

Kaká celebrates a beautiful goal, Matri worships from afar

Even the fact that Allegri only used two subs, once again, ahead of a Champions League match, and by the end of the match there was only one natural midfielder on the pitch along with five strikers, despite a terrific performance by Poli and the fact that Cristante and Saponara were on the bench, both having scored and looked better than most of our other players last week during our friendly. Or that Allegri said that he was happy with how we played today, meanwhile Gasperini said, "If Milan can't beat us when we're only playing with 10 men, then it means that they have problems." So if this astonishing display of whatever is worse than mediocrity is secondary today, what could the Curva have done that is worse than this?

Well, for one, they attacked our players with vicious banners, chants, and whistles throughout the match. Banners like “The golden years of the great Milan, to the years of Zapata and Constant.” Or “Never a Milan so devastated, you have soiled our history.” Or “Constant: instead of being an arrogant clown, respect who pays to see you play in an embarrassing way.” Some were aimed at management, one even questioned Allegri, amazingly enough. There are more listed here, but the banners and insults grew worse as the game went on.

"Our patience is finished, get some balls players, coach, and management!!!"

They were whistling and jeering our own players, then they started chants of “unworthy.” There was a threatening banner “Red like the fire, black like our rage - If you don’t spit blood, start being scared.” Police got involved after they saw this banner: “Let’s meet by the exit you unworthy bunch.” So the Curva and the police went to the exits, which were then blocked off by the fans, not allowing players from either club nor the away fans from Genoa to leave the stadium until after midnight.

And what was it that they wanted exactly? They said "These players don't know what sacrifice is. They have so much money, while people like us work hard for them." They wanted a meeting with the players, they said, meanwhile singing things like “We are waiting with sticks.” Balotelli went to talk to them, but was stopped by the police. Maybe a good idea there, but the fact that the fans were there in the first place is disturbing.

Fans behaving badly

So Kaká and Abbiati came out to talk to them. I’m assuming the former was for his diplomatic skills and the latter for his size (or that they were both vice-captains, and Montolivo had been suspended for this one.) In three minutes, the Curva were apparently heard sufficient to their liking, and the Curva applauded the two vice-captains and dispersed. Not sure, but it was reported that the Curva felt like some of the players were too undisciplined and accused a couple of them of going out too late, etc. Yeah, as if those problems were the cause for such a lengthy run of poor form.

I would berate the Curva for their poor choice of demonstration, reminding them that if they are upset because they pay to see the players play, there are those of us who have spent many seasons worth of money just to get to Milano and see one game. I could remind them that their beef should be with management, and they should not protest while our players are battling it out on the pitch, it is just another distraction that is not needed and they are being hypocritical in their words and deeds. But you know what? Someone said it much better: Franco Baresi. Yes, the legend tweeted this while the Curva was behaving so poorly: “I understand, it’s a delicate moment, the atmosphere at the stadium was heavy. But I can’t NOT support the team.”

"Mister: With how the team is playing there is little to be happy (Allegri) about"
(it's like they KNEW what he was going to say in his press conference)

And that tells you all you need to know. Despite the pain and suffering of fans worldwide, no matter how hard it is to watch, or what you personally pay to see it, during the game, you support the team. Maybe you are critical of the coach or of a specific player for making a mistake… again. But you always support the team. They are our warriors, battling it out for 90 minutes, and even if they lose the battle, they are Milan. We can find better ways to protest against the management, the coach, the mercato, whatever issues we have. But in the stadium, during the game, we do as Baresi says, no matter what.

While part of me was glad that they were finally so angry, the rest of me was horrified as to how they went about it. It’s as if there was a vacuum for class, and it has sucked the class out of every level of the club. I thought we’d seen the end of it with the Curva’s behavior following the territorial discrimination incidents, but this is incredibly low, even for a bunch of ultras. But maybe it is like Bonera said, that "it’s a sign of just how much they love the club." Because for once, instead of talking about how Milan are now on 14 points in 13 games, all everyone is talking about is how horrible and out of line our Curva Sud are.

This post inspired by the music of  Ludo’s “Love Me Dead”

Our next match is
Champions League Group Stage
Celtic vs. AC Milan
Tuesday, November 26 • 20:45 CET (2:45pm EST)

Milan 1, Genoa 1: Fans Behaving Badly Milan 1, Genoa 1: Fans Behaving Badly Reviewed by Elaine on 5:17 PM Rating: 5
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