Spezia-Milan Preview: The Spice Must Flow

Milan are still undefeated in the league, but the games are coming so quickly, it seems impossible to keep it up. Saturday, we are away to Spezia, which means "spice" in Italian. Sitting 17th on the table, they certainly do not seem to be in control of their fate. But never underestimate the power of any team, particularly since their only win came on Sunday, and they nearly overthrew lower table Juventus on Wednesday. Also, the last time Milan went to Spezia, we lost, and it was then that Milan's season really started spiraling downward. Milan are still struggling with a long and mysterious early injury list, but hope to recover at least Giroud for the bench on Saturday. Milan are still searching for health and vitality, but with their youth and mentality have the potential to rule the universe. The spice must flow.

We could use his vision and power again

Spezia were able to stay up last year under the management of the talented Vincenzo Italiano, but this year he moved on and was replaced this summer by the much less experienced Thiago Motta. Hopefully, his Inter past will not curse us for this one. Thus far, their results have been D-L-L-W-L, with the win being against Venezia on Sunday, the team we met midweek. The Aquilotti's midweek matchup was even spicier, as they came back from a goal down to Juventus, scoring two, before eventually conceding two from the Turin side. For that match, Motta lined up: Zoet; Amian, Hristov, Nikolaou, Bastoni; Ferrer, Bourabia; Daniele Verde, Maggiore, Gyasi; and Antiste. 

Motta's side has some injury problems as well, with Ebrima Colley and Agudelo out injured. Additionally, Erlic, Léo Sena, and Reca all have muscular issues, and Kovalenko has a problem with his left knee. All of them missed Wednesday's match and are still doubtful for this one. Spezia may have less quality in their squad, but, not unlike desert-dwellers, they are used to fighting for survival and should never be counted out, as we learned painfully last February. Perhaps their win was enhanced by the American takeover of the team around the same time, but with order established and Milan still unbeaten this season, perhaps we can hope for a better outcome on Saturday.

Kind of like a Derby with Motta at the helm

Speaking of painful, Milan's injury list continues to prohibit us from taking advantage of our bigger and more experienced squad this year. This week, Plizzari had surgery for bilateral patellar tendonitis, an injury caused by repeated stress to the knees. He will be out for about three months. Ibrahimović is hoping to be back on Tuesday, but will miss this one. Also likely to miss are Calabria, Kjaer, Bakayoko, and Krunić. Messias has been doing personalized training and has yet to be called up. The good news, though, is that Giroud returned to training on Thursday and is expected to make the bench for this match. *Update: Calabria is called up, however Florenzi is out with a knee trauma.*

Milan fielded the youngest team in a Serie A match this season this past Wednesday, according to OptaPaolo, not unlike the young Milan side that beat Spezia 3-0 last October at the San Siro. Let's hope that our need to rely on young players again is more prescience than precedent for our trip to the Stadio Alberto Picco. Milan's task of controlling Spezia may be seen as just another match, but for fans, it has far deeper meaning than just three points. After all, the spice must flow.

This post inspired by the music of EON's "The Spice Must Flow"

Serie A Week 6 
Spezia vs. Milan
Saturday, September 25 • 15:00 CEST (9am EDT)
This match can be streamed LIVE on Paramount+ in the U.S.

Spezia-Milan Preview: The Spice Must Flow Spezia-Milan Preview: The Spice Must Flow Reviewed by Elaine on 11:00 PM Rating: 5
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