Milan-Cagliari Preview: It’s Time

Most people will look at Milan facing the 15th place Cagliari on Sunday and expect a win. Those people haven’t been watching Milan for very long. In addition to the fact that games are played on the pitch, not on paper, Milan have for too long now given up valuable points when it mattered most. And now, with so many teams within a point of fourth place, Milan need to win each game more than ever. Cagliari are not an easy team, despite their position on the table, and I’m sure they would be happy to help Milan fulfill their self-destructive ways. We split the points with them back in September. But if Milan are to achieve their goal of qualifying for the Champions League next year, at some point they will have to shed their ghosts and live up to their potential. It’s time.

No room for errors this time

Cagliari are not in the best of form, with a win against Genoa and a draw vs. Empoli as well as three losses in their last five Serie A matches. Their most recent 1-0 defeat was to Atalanta on Monday. For that match, Maran lined up Pisacane, Ceppitelli, Romagna, Padoin; Farago, Cigarini, Deiola; Ionita; Birsa, and Pavoletti. In a terrible turn of events, The Slovenian Messi, former Milan star Valter Birsa, suffered a compound fracture of his arm in that game and will not be available to punish us. Additionally, Cacciatore, Castro, Cerri, Thereau, and Klavan are unavailable due to injury, with Bradaric in doubt. That is the kind of injury list that can defeat a team before they arrive, or band them together and inspire the performance of the season.

Gattuso could have Biglia back in the squad, as he has been training well. His injury list includes Reina, Zapata, Caldara, and of course, Bonaventura. Suso is in doubt, with reports that his niggling groin injury is pubalgia. What will be interesting will be the spirit with which the others play. While Piatek has brought back the dreams of many disillusioned Milan fans, he is only one young player. A player who has scored three goals in three appearances. Two of those goals were assisted by the other new player, Paqueta, who has been nothing short of amazing since joining the club last month.

So long as we have Borini, we shouldn't lose

However, after an inspiring match against Napoli in Serie A, then a decisive win against them in the Coppa Italia, Milan faded when Roma tested them on Sunday. Had Milan played as convincingly in Rome as they did in their matches against Napoli, they might have taken all three points and pulled away from the pack of teams chasing for fourth place. But they didn’t. They sputtered and weren’t able to meet their opponents at their level. Which left us a mere point ahead of multiple teams at the end of matchday 23. So if Milan truly want to keep fourth place, they need to step it up for this match and keep that momentum through the end of the season. It’s time.

This music inspired by the music of Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger”

Serie A Week 24
Milan vs. Cagliari
Sunday, February 10 • 20:30 CET (2:30pm CET)
This match can be streamed LIVE on ESPN+ in the U.S.

Milan-Cagliari Preview: It’s Time Milan-Cagliari Preview: It’s Time Reviewed by Elaine on 11:57 PM Rating: 5
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