Milan-Udinese Preview: Restart Button

Tomorrow’s match marks the beginning of the second half of the season. With a different coach from the beginning of the season, a different formation, some player changes, and some recently acquired mentality, this is practically a completely different Milan team than faced Udinese on matchday one. Like someone pressed the restart button.


Our first match of the season was a loss, with Giampaolo looking the most lost of all. He refused to line up new players, played people completely out of position, and put the first real nail in his coffin. Since that match, it was a painful road back to relevancy for Milan, with Pioli replacing Giampaolo, changing formations as needed, and now some new players being brought in, most notably Ibrahimovic.

Udinese had a big 3-0 win over Sassuolo on Sunday, but then were crushed 4-0 by Juventus in the Coppa Italia on Wednesday. Whether they come into this match still defeated or reacting to that loss remains to be seen. They are only one point and two spots below us on the table, so expect a battle.

Abject humiliation

Speaking of battle, for their win over Sassuolo on Sunday, Gotti lined up Musso; Rodrigo Becao, Troost-Ekong, Nuytinck; Stryger-Larsen, De Paul, Mandragora, Fofana, Sema; Lasagna, and Okaka. As for injuries, he should only be missing Samir.

Milan have had some changes in the transfer market since our 2-0 away win to Cagliari last week. Caldara went on loan to Atalanta; Kjaer came in on loan with option to buy from Sevilla; Pepe Reina went on loan to Aston Villa; Asmir Begovic came on loan from Bournemouth; and Borini went to Hellas Verona permanently. Suso has asked for a transfer, but played on Wednesday, while Rodriguez has an agreement with Fenerbahce, but it still waiting for approval from the Turkish League.

Hoping for a very different match from August

After a confident victory against SPAL in the Coppa Italia on Wednesday where Ibra, Leao, and others were rested despite a number of injuries, Pioli will still be somewhat limited by those injuries. Duarte and Biglia are still out long-term, and Calabria and Musacchio have been ruled out for this match. No doubt Conti and Kjaer will deputize for the two defenders. Gigio Donnarumma is still doubtful, and it is uncertain whether Pioli would choose Antonio Donnarumma, who played on Wednesday, or new loanee Begovic, should Gigio not pass his fitness test.

The change in mentality since the arrival of Ibrahimovic is very refreshing, but this might be a pretty epic battle. Milan always seem to struggle with the lunchtime games, so let’s hope that the mentality will change that, too. It would be great to win a second consecutive league match as a way of hitting the restart button.

This post inspired by the music of Cigarettes after Sex

Serie A Week 20
Milan vs. Udinese
Sunday, January 20 • 12:30 CET (6:30am EST)
This match will be shown LIVE on ESPN2 in the U.S.

Milan-Udinese Preview: Restart Button Milan-Udinese Preview: Restart Button Reviewed by Elaine on 1:08 AM Rating: 5
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