The Final Countdown

There are six games left of the Serie A season. Milan are currently in second, ten points behind Inter. However, both Atalanta and Juventus are only one point behind us, with Napoli a mere three points behind us. Lazio, whom we play on Monday, are eight points behind us, but have a game in hand against relegation-threatened Torino. This past year was so miraculous with Milan's unbeaten run. Then injuries caught up to us and now our future is not so certain. Will Milan make our goal of top four? These next six games are the final countdown.

Six games for top four... can everyone do that math?

Milan have been hot and cold this calendar year, especially at the San Siro for some reason. Luckily, we play four of these last six matches away, in particular Juventus and Atalanta, both of whom beat us in the original fixtures this season. But now Pioli has a whole new mentality problem to deal with, because Elliott Management and/or Gazidis are hell bent on staying in the failed Super League group, despite Milan having worked literally for years to return to the Champions League. UEFA are saying we have to pick, while tensions between Maldini and Gazidis are ice cold again. Gazidis kept the Super League a secret, and when Maldini found out, he was furious, and refused to allow Gazidis into the dressing room to talk to the players about it. 

A big morale boost, but will he be able to play?

Another management rift is not good for the mentality ahead of the final push for top four, but I guess if anyone can handle it, Pioli can. Ibrahimovic extended his contract for another year, as well, so that may help with the mentality, even if he is doubtful for Monday due to injury. Here is the schedule for the final six games, with the score from this season's first fixture in parentheses:

        Lazio vs. Milan • April 26th (Milan 3, Lazio 2)

        Milan vs. Benevento • May 1st (Benevento 0, Milan 2)

        Juventus vs. Milan • May 9th (Milan 1, Juventus 3)

        Torino vs. Milan • May 12th (Milan 2, Torino 0)

        Milan vs. Cagliari • May 16th (Cagliari 0, Milan 2)

        Atalanta vs. Milan • May 23rd (Milan 0, Atalanta 3)

Benevento, Torino, and Cagliari are all fighting to stay clear of relegation, those are the most dangerous types of games to play. Plus, two of the three of those matches are at the San Siro. Ouch. Lazio are fighting for a European spot, and Atalanta and Juventus both want top four as well. Literally, anything could happen in these six games, and Milan will have to stay focused to stay in a Champions League qualification spot.

Will Gazidis' follies be the final nail in Gigio's contract renewal?

I would like to believe that the players have the mentality to do this. Except now, because Gazidis won't back out of the Super League, they could literally qualify for the Champions League and then be banned. Additionally, there are things like Gigio Donnarumma's contract extension. I believed with all my heart that he would stay at the club of his heart. But with these insane games that Gazidis is playing with Maldini, combined with the Super League nonsense, he could easily walk away on a free. There are just so many distractions from the actual football right now. We can only hope that Pioli is able to keep them focused on the matches. Otherwise, it may be another year without Milan qualifying for the Champions League. Another final countdown.

This post inspired by the music of Europe's "The Final Countdown"

Our next match is
Serie A Week 33
Lazio vs. Milan
Monday, April 26 • 20:45 CEST (2:45pm EDT)

The Final Countdown The Final Countdown Reviewed by Elaine on 11:02 PM Rating: 5
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