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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.

The kind of strength a man could survive, but a mouse wouldn't last a minute

Lazio have started off the year well enough and were in third place up until last weekend. But a costly loss to Napoli has left them only on 31 points, which is now fifth place, behind both Napoli and Sampdoria. Rest assured that they will be fighting for that spot back, and will need all three points to have any hope of it.

Against Napoli, Pioli fielded Berisha; Basta, Radu, Cana, Cavanda; Parolo, Biglia, Ledesma; Djordevic, Keita, Candreva. He’s got some serious injury concerns, missing Gentiletti, Ciani, Ederson, Braafheid, Gonzalez, Anderson, and Lulic, as well as Mauri and de Vrij still questionable as to fitness. But even with his injury woes, he’s got the advantage of mentality and playing at home. I mean they lost to Napoli, there is no real shame in that. It’s not like they lost to 17th place Atalanta. Or 14th place Sassuolo.

Lazio look thrilled to be wearing this '86-87 throwback shirt for our match

Meanwhile, Inzaghi has to face injuries on top of the insults being thrown his way. In addition to losing Niang to Galliani’s Obsessive Transfer Disorder™ (OTD), he’s missing Zapata, Bonera, De Sciglio and De Jong to injury, while the Muntaried™ van Ginkel and also Pazzini, Essien and Muntari are questionable. Rami is suspended for card accumulation and Honda is still at the Asian Cup, too. Is it unusual to feel tremendous pain when reading a Milan injury and suspension list? But get used to the pain, because win, lose, or draw, we will see these guys again as we host Lazio on Tuesday at the San Siro for the Coppa Italia, and that’s gonna hurt, too.

As if the mentality of the club and its fans wasn’t difficult enough to overcome right now, the squad are facing an uphill battle by playing in the Stadio Olimpico, and playing with a team who have as much or more talent, but haven’t had their co-CEO playing musical chairs with their squad nonstop for 2.5 years. If those disadvantages weren’t enough, Milan have to deal with a massive injury/suspension/missing list and a looming transfer window deadline list that could see any of them plucked from the team like an eagle.

Using Mickey Mouse tactics will see the eagles devour us

Eagles are predators, very high on the food chain. Will Milan be their dinner? Or will we find the strength from within to make a meal out of Lazio? Or maybe learn to fly like eagles, just enough to get a draw and a precious point? While it’s hard to think about our team being someone’s dinner instead of having teams cower in front of us, it is now a reality. And sometimes, reality bites. But so do eagles, once they’ve snatched their prey. So it’s up to Milan to decide: are we mice or men?


This post inspired by the music of Oingo Boingo’s  “Nothing to Fear (But Fear Itself)”


Milan vs. Lazio
Saturday, January 24 • 20:45 CET (2:45pm EST)
This match will be shown on RAI and BeIN Sport in the U.S.