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Milan-Sampdoria Preview: Audition

If the papers are to be believed, Sampdoria’s coach, Sinisa Mihajlovic, is a frontrunner to be Milan’s coach next season. And while he is out of contract at the end of this season, Inzaghi’s contract lasts another year. So if you are inclined to believe the papers, then perhaps this will be an audition of sorts for Mihajlovic. If not for the club, then at least for the fans and rumor mills. That is if the Curva Sud decide to show up, of course. With their senseless boycott, they seem to be auditioning for the worst fans this year, and that title will be really tough to steal from the fans of a couple of other clubs. Yet this match could also be quite the test for Milan, who have defeated the bottom three teams and now Palermo. Will they be able to defeat fifth place Sampdoria? If so, it could prove to be an audition for our finishing spot this season.

And the winner of Most Entertaining Owner is...

I will personally be somewhat distracted on Sunday because we are playing the team with the owner who is hands down the most fun ever, he doesn’t need to audition. I speak, of course, of the incredibly entertaining Massimo Ferrero. His biggest crime to date was saying something racist about Inter’s owner. And despite it being someone related to Inter, he lost some points from me for that, that’s just not cool. Especially when there are so many other bad things you can say about Inter without earning yourself a three month ban. Hopefully he learned his lesson and will just shut up and dance.

He took extreme precautions to insure that he doesn't say anything racist again
(must have watched my video on treating Premature Exclamation)

But I digress. When we are not watching for crazy Ferrero sightings, we should be watching Sampdoria the team. They currently sit in fifth on 48 points, seven points and three places on the table higher than us. So we absolutely should pay attention and not be looking to see if Ferrero is doing crazy things with his scarf again. Also because of Mihajlovic. Despite his Inter background, he is the best and possibly most likely candidate for the Milan bench next season should management decide to sack Inzaghi. Or not. Either way, the point is still to pay attention to what’s happening on the pitch.

"You're going to steal my coach? That's a good one! You almost had me there"

Under Mihajlovic, Sampdoria has thrived this year, they were the surprise of the season early on for sure. And in fact, their current form is W-W-W-W-L, including back to back wins over Roma and Inter. Their loss to Fiorentina this past Sunday in Florence will likely be a motivator for them to come away from the San Siro with three points. Which would make Ferrero celebrate wildly, I’m sure, but I don’t adore him so much that I want to see that celebration. Not in my house. He was deprived of celebrating last week in Fiorentina, where Mihajlovic lined up Viviano; Romagnoli, Regini, Silvestre, De Silvestri; Obiang, Palombo, Soriano; Eder, Muriel, and Eto’o. He will still be without Cacciatore, De Vitis, and Rizzo, with Munoz and Okaka uncertain for fitness reasons.

You'll never catch Berlusconi doing that. All he does are the awkward Hip Hip Hooras

Inzaghi, on the other hand, after seeing the rest of Milan’s 56 center backs return this week, got the ultimate boost as Bonera returned to training on Thursday. That’s right, Bonny is back, baby. I’m sure even Ferrero will cheer about that. So Inzaghi will only be missing Honda, El Shaarawy, Mastour, Agazzi, Armero, and Montolivo. That is our shortest injury list in some time, which allows Inzaghi the opportunity to choose almost his best squad. Well except for Muntari, of course. He’s got cars to buy, I don’t think he’ll be gracing us with his menacing presence anytime soon. But even without “The Killer,” this match is going to be a very tough one to get a result from. And fans (except the Curva, of course,) will be watching closely, because after two straight wins against lower teams, winning this one would be like an audition for some credibility and consistency, both of which Milan could desperately use this year.

He is so committed to youth, women allow him to kidnap their babies

The question for me will be whether or not the fun loving and eccentric Ferrero will travel to the San Siro. I don’t know if he’s actually crazy like Zamparini and Lotito and De Laurentiis, but he’s the owner that shows the most spirit and enthusiasm for his team, so he’s really fun to watch (even better than Fiorentina’s sweaty, dancing Della Valle.) But of course I hope his enthusiasm is dampened severely by the scoreline on Sunday, as a result for Milan would make me equally enthusiastic in return. And whether or not Mihajlovic is auditioning for a new job or the Curva Sud audition for the part of Inter fans or Milan audition for their credibility, if Ferrero shows up, it will be a party. Hopefully a party for the home team.

This post inspired by the music of Queen’s “Crazy Little Thing Called Love”

Milan vs. Sampdoria
Sunday, April 12 • 20:45 CEST (2:45pm EDT)
This match will be shown LIVE on RAI and BeIN Sports in the U.S.