Atalanta 1, Milan 1: Deluge

t wasn’t just pouring rain from the sky today in Bergamo, there was also a deluge of cards. Twelve cards, to be exact, ten yellow and two red. The most in any Serie A match this season. The two forms of heavy precipitation were probably related, as players were slipping and sliding into each other for 90 minutes plus stoppage time. But conceding an equalizer in stoppage time, Milan only took a point out of the match, leaving our Europa League qualifying hanging until the final matchday next week.

Delirious in the rain

The yellow cards started in the 13th minute and continued through the 90th. However, there were some fouls that Guida missed, surprisingly. Like in the 36th, when Papu Gomez seemingly intentionally kneed Biglia in the lower back, that was filthy dirty, and went unpunished. I’m assuming it is also the reason that Biglia had to be subbed off at the half, since he was in visible pain after that point. I mean I don’t think it was wise for Biglia to play in the first place, having fractured two vertebrae just a few short weeks ago, but that kind of filthy foul did not help matters any.

There were six yellow cards that Milan received, but the most impressive was the straight red that Montolivo received in the 75th. After sliding into Papu Gomez with both feet, he was sent off and guaranteed not to make an appearance next week which is fine by me. Having been subbed on at the half, most of what he did was to lose the ball or make incomplete passes, so I consider his card a blessing. It also leveled the playing field again, with Atalanta having Toloi sent off for a double yellow in the 64th.

The ex-Atalanta player's biggest contribution was to ensure no contribution next week

And speaking of a level playing field, Milan managed to play down to their opponent again, matching the pace and physicality, with only a little bit more in possession. At least Milan were more clinical, but only having taken five shots in all, the two that were on target seem hardly a consolation. Meanwhile, Atalanta took a whopping 24 shots, with only five on target. Which was good, because Donnarumma was still shaky after the abuse following his errors on Wednesday.

But Kessie’s goal was brilliant. The play began with a great backheel flick by the ex-Atalanta man. That was sent into Montolivo, who clearly couldn’t handle it, so when the Atalanta defender rebounded it out, Kessie just stepped up to do it himself, sending it straight into the back of the net. 1-0 Milan in the 60th minute. And complete respect that he did not celebrate against his former team. Kessie was a beast in this match, but a beast with character and respect for the team he used to play for.

Not a great game, but at least we kept the point

The game wasn’t leveled until in stoppage time, when Masiello capitalized on Donnarumma’s unsettled ways and tapped it in past him to equalize, 1-1 all. This was particularly heartbreaking, because with Fiorentina’s result, the three points would have solidified sixth place for us, with no three rounds of Europa League qualifying, and also allow us to keep our ICC commitments (read cash call) in the U.S. this summer. But it was not to be, and we leave it until the final round this weekend to see if we take sixth or seventh place this season.

Atalanta took more shots, but they also fouled twice as much. However they attacked a lot more and probably deserved to win this game. While I should have liked to see Milan take home all three points, I should also be grateful that at least we took one point, keeping us in the running for that Europa League group stage spot. Considering the pouring rain, the wet pitch, and the pouring cards from Guida, I guess Milan were just lucky to survive the deluge.

This post inspired by the Eurythmics’ “Here Comes the Rain Again”

Our last match of the season is
Serie A Week 38
Milan vs. Fiorentina
Sunday, May 20 • 18:00 CEST (12noon EDT)

Atalanta 1, Milan 1: Deluge Atalanta 1, Milan 1: Deluge Reviewed by Elaine on 11:52 PM Rating: 5
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