Milan-Verona Preview: Zombie Apocalypse

It's not even Halloween yet, and Milan look like the walking dead. One by one, our players have succumbed to whatever is going on at Milanello. The injuries are not even primarily muscle injuries, like we survived during Allegri's reign of terror. There are random and unusual injuries, with three players needing surgery so far this season, and this is only week eight. Just when you thought that it couldn't get any worse, someone gets COVID-19, even when vaccinated. That is the story going into this match. Not looking for the win, not being undefeated in the league and breathing down Napoli's neck. Fans went from optimism to despair over our zombie apocalypse.

Heal up fast, Super Eagle

Verona,  on the other hand, sit twelfth on the table with eight points, technically tied with Torino. Their current form is L-W-D-D-W, with the first a surprise win over Roma, then a four-nil spanking of Spezia before the break. Igor Tudor's men have already exceeded expectations, and show no signs of stopping. 

The win over Spezia was impressive, with all four goals scored before a late red shown for the Aquilotti. For that match, Tudor lined up Montipò; Dawidowicz, Günter, Casale; Faraoni, Bessa, Ilić, Lazovic; Barák, Simeone, and Caprari. In fact, Tudor has done so well with this side that even former Milan player Kalinić has already scored three goals. Tudor will be missing both Frabotta and Ruegg to injury, and Ilić and Faraoni are in doubt to start as of this writing.

Kalinić scoring? It really is the Apocalypse

Pioli is surveying the landscape looking for a living starting eleven amongst the undead. Most of the injuries are more severe and long term. Out for at least a month are Messias and Florenzi. Plizzari and Maignan are both out for two and a half to three months more, with both goalkeepers having had surgery recently. Theo Hernández tested positive for COVID-19 after returning from National Team duty, despite being vaccinated. With the Champions League fixtures coming up, it is hoped that he will test negative and return sooner rather than later due to a lower viral load associated with those who are vaccinated. Bakayoko is reportedly improving, but still training alone.

Some good news amongst the doom and gloom – Maldini and Calabria missed their final National Team matches with small injuries, but they are both back training with the team. Ibrahimović finally returned to training with the team on Thursday after his achilles heel issue, so that is also good news. Krunić also returned to training on Thursday. 

It's like they're twins... I wonder which one is the better goalkeeper? 

There is also the new arrival of Antonio Mirante, singer Harry Connick Jr.'s doppelganger, who was brought in as a fifth goalkeeper this season to cover while Plizzari and Maignan are out. But having been out of contract,he has not been training, and will likely take a while to be fit. Tatarusanu has not been consistent, and when he has been poor, he has been so very, very poor. We might be better off gloving up the 48 year-old goalkeeping coach, Dida. Or why not Ibrahimović?

The club are trying to spin the "now we have a chance to prove ourselves again" line, posting photos of only smiling players in training. But we fans know the evil that lurks amongst the undead. Last season, "proving ourselves" week in and week out with so many players missing squeezed the mentality out of our squad drop by drop and nearly cost us the Champions League. Ouch. I said Champions League. Let's not even go there. First we have to hope for a miracle on Saturday night amidst a zombi apocalypse. 

This post inspired by the music of Muse's "Hysteria"

Serie A Week 8
Milan vs. Hellas Verona
Saturday, October 16 • 20:45 CEST (2:45pm EDT)
This match can be streamed LIVE on Paramount+ in the U.S.

Milan-Verona Preview: Zombie Apocalypse Milan-Verona Preview: Zombie Apocalypse Reviewed by Elaine on 12:10 AM Rating: 5
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