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Showing posts from January, 2015

Milan-Parma Preview: Not-So-Super Bowl

In the United States tomorrow, two American football teams will be vying for a “world” championship. But before that, two fallen stars of Italian football will be desperately fighting to take three points to redeem themselves, like buried alive kind of desperation. One game will have international television coverage, celebrities and glamour, the other will have die hard fans who have to drink just to be able to withstand the pain of watching their fallen clubs. Welcome to Milan vs. Parma. The not-so-super spectacle before the actual spectacle.

Saving Milan

With the club under such scrutiny and having such poor results, Galliani has turned to an unusual new tactic in the transfer market. In the past two weeks, he has signed both Jesus and a Savior. Jesus of course, is the first given name of Suso, otherwise known as Jesús Joaquín Fernández Sáenz de la Torre, and the Savior would be Salvatore (Italian for “Savior”) Bocchetti. I don’t know that either of them are the second coming of Christ, and I doubt that both of them together will “save” Milan. But it is a very interesting choice of tactics for i Diavoli.

Milan 0, Lazio 1: Still Sucking

As Milan crashed out of the Coppa to a more subdued Lazio than the one who thrashed us on Saturday, one thing was painfully obvious: we’re still sucking. With Montolivo “covering” (and I use that term in the loosest sense of the word) the center defensive midfield spot for De Jong, who was ruled unfit just before match time, we may as well have not even showed up. But the Curva did show up, angry and proud, and even some other angry fans to give Galliani a tongue lashing before he left the stands in the 86th minute. So despite a disappointing performance and the winning goal scored due to a handball call, at least the fans are finally starting to turn their anger to the right place. Even if we’re still sucking.

Coppa Italia – Milan vs. Lazio: Do You Believe in Miracles?

Inzaghi wasn’t given a winning squad, but it hasn’t stopped him from trying

Guest Post: Dear Silvio

I have a special treat for you today! A few hours after the game on Saturday, I found a passionate letter to Silvio in my inbox in the form of this guest post from Nathan. He is a longtime reader of the blog and I had recently asked him if he’d like to write a post. Inspired by the insanity, please enjoy the following letter to Silvio Berlusconi, the sentiments I think many of us share right now.

Lazio 3, Milan 1: Wake Up and Smell the Coffee

Although Mazzoleni did everything in his power to keep Lazio off the board and give the advantage to Milan, waiving off not just one but probably two penalty claims that were valid for Lazio, he had no idea that he was up against a Milan team that could shoot themselves in the leg multiple times within a single match. Or the punctuation mark that Philippe Mexes would make in the seven minutes of stoppage time to leave Milan on ten men and also leave the Milan fans to wear the Cone of Shame. His behavior, of course, only slightly more shameful than the behavior of the Milan fans themselves, who whistled and chanted against their own team when they were down. And I don’t know what is more shameful – doing the opposite of supporting your team or pretending that you had no idea this team was going to play so badly with the squad they had available. Will this be the game that everyone wakes up and smells the coffee?

Lazio vs. Milan: Survival of the Drunkest

When your puppy is self-medicating, you know Milan is in trouble

Lazio-Milan Preview: Mice or Men?

If Lazio’s mascot is an eagle, then Milan truly have to ask themselves: Are we mice? Or are we men? A man could escape an eagle attack with some damage, but live to tell the tale. But a mouse… well a mouse would be but a snack for this Lazio team, devoured faster than someone being attacked on Twitter. So as they travel to the Olimpico, now without a team bus and apparently without Niang, too, it’s time to man up and face Lazio like a real team so that we don’t get devoured.

Podcast: The Trouble With Milan

Milan are in crisis mode again, or at least that’s what I’ve read. But between unrealistic expectations, poor results, a poor squad, and fans behaving badly, perhaps the trouble is not exactly what some think it is. But then again, if everyone thinks it, then Milan really are in trouble. Perspective is a very powerful thing. But perhaps the lack thereof is actually the trouble with Milan after all.

Milan 0, Atalanta 1: Midseason, Midtable, Midlife Crisis

Another loss. At home. To a lower table team. We are halfway through the season, sit in eighth place, and fans are dropping like flies with these results. Inzaghi’s honeymoon is over, and for many, he’s already overstayed his welcome. The mercato is open for 15 more days, so clearly that is where the answer lies. Or does it? We are midseason, midtable, and fans are having a midlife crisis. So how do we “fix” it?

Milan vs. Atalanta: Don’t Get Your Panties in a Bunch

Don’t get your panties in a bunch... this Milan is not your father’s Milan

Milan-Atalanta Preview: Home is Where the Heart Is

Sunday’s match will pull on the heartstrings of more than one Milan player. Agazzi, Bonaventura, Pazzini, and Montolivo all played for Atalanta and/or came through the Atalanta youth system. Cerci also spent a year on loan at Atalanta, and our own Mister Inzaghi spent an infamous year in the nerazzurri, the season that launched his playing career. So where will their hearts lie? Hopefully with the crest they wear on their shirts now. And even if it may be bittersweet to have to take down the club that helped build their careers, victory is sweeter, and victory at the San Siro even more sweet. So with families and children being particularly encouraged to attend this one, I say that home is where the heart is… (or should that be the heart is where home is?)

Coppa Italia • Milan-Sassuolo Afterthoughts

So on Tuesday Milan pulled out a 2-1 win vs. Sassuolo in the Coppa Italia, not without a few question marks, of course. The biggest one of course, is their owner, Squinzi, still a Milan fan? I mean the team of his heart sent the team of his pocketbook out of the competition. How does that feel? Also, Gattuso was in the stands, but when they panned to him, he looked kind of ill. Was it this Milan making him ill? Or had he eaten something bad for dinner? These are probably not the questions you were thinking of.

Coppa Italia • Milan-Sassuolo Preview: When it Counts

Now that Milan has developed a taste for silverware, we come into the Coppa Italia Round of 16 with a chance at a real trophy. That’s right. A trophy from an actual FIFA-sanctioned tournament and a ticket to the Super Coppa and the Europa League, too. Oh yeah, don’t forget the patch. Whichever team hoists the Coppa Italia trophy gets to wear that little target-shaped tricolore patch all next season. So even if no one cares about the Coppa, this year, Milan must. Let’s hope that we can show up like we did in all of those friendlies, especially when it counts.

Torino 1, Milan 1: Highway Robbery

So many Milan fans are still completely melting down after another horrific loss by their European elite squad in this Champions League final (I didn’t even realize we lost or had that kind of squad or were playing a final, but apparently we did and we do and it was.) However, I feel the need to personally apologize to Torino, who played an immense game and were seriously robbed to take only the point. Milan were so very lucky to get the goal, and to stave off the barrage of shots to only concede the one goal, especially in Torino’s house. So sorry, Torino. You’ve fallen victim to a highway robbery.

Torino vs. Milan: The Unstoppable Amauri

He will stop at nothing to hurt Milan

Torino-Milan Preview: In the Bull Pen

The phrase “in the bull pen” is more commonly associated with baseball. But our match on Saturday takes a literal approach to the phrase, in that we face il Toro in their stadium, or pen. This is no warmup, it’s do or die drop 3 more points against a lower table team. With the added storyline of Cerci potentially playing against the team that made him, it could end up a lot like a rodeo. Only will Milan be mere clowns? Or will we bravely defeat the bulls? Without any consistency this season, I wouldn’t put any money on it either way.

Milan 1, Sassuolo 2: Dedication

The hopes and dreams of Milanisti everywhere of kicking off the new year with three points and a great performance were dashed, and the optimism beaten out of us like we all got in Essien’s way today. But I think the players were speaking to us as fans today. In fact, I think this loss was actually a dedication: “This one goes out to all of the fans on social media who overreacted to our last three results.” (add your choice of cheesy pop ballad here.)

Milan vs. Sassuolo: Please, La Befana

Please, La Befana, bring Milan the three points.

Podcast: That’s Life

Milan have managed a treble this season… well if friendly trophies count for a treble, anyway. Which has got Milan fans everywhere dreaming big… maybe a little too big. After seeing our players drive Audis on a racetrack, sit in a Fly Emirates flight simulator, win awards that no one has heard of before and otherwise life the good life in Dubai and then beat Real Madrid in a friendly, it’s easy to get carried away. But it’s also important to remember where the club has been recently and consider what could be happening in the upcoming mercato. Things seem to be looking up, but Milan fans know all too well that things are not always what they seem to be at Milan anymore. That’s life.

The Cerci Riddle

Rumors of a Torres-Cerci swap initially seemed absolutely ridiculous. When they began to be a reality, Galliani was instantly praised by many as a genius. But my Spidey sense was tingling on this deal, and by doing a little reading, I think I’ve figured out why. First, we lost our best center forward and the player with a proven track record of winning, even if he had not been able to produce the goals in four short months that we all would have liked him to. It’s not as if Pazzini or Niang have produced, either, and we have no one else for that spot. Except Matri, of course, we’re still paying for him. Secondly, Cerci was obviously brought in as cover for Honda this month, but what about the other 17 months of his contract? Who starts there? And do we even know anything about Cerci other than his success at Torino? Many of the answers will unfold as we jump back into the Serie A season. But the last question troubles me the most. His acquisition and all of the hoops the club had to …

Happy 2015!

Saying goodbye to the old year and hello to a new one can be bittersweet. Such is the case yet again for Milan fans. While things on the pitch are improving, we start the new year knowing a large deficit is looming, which will undoubtedly affect our roster and thus the things on the pitch again. Although maybe it is just what management need to truly help this team contend for European football again, who knows?