Milan 0, Inter 0: Born of Frustration

Both clubs came into this match sputtering, and much was made of the potential outcome of the game. As if a Derby wasn't frustrating enough, this one ended up a scoreless draw, with a referee who contributed to the frustration by making very few calls (maybe he was reacting to Pioli's complaints about too many calls.) The match had all of the fire of a Derby, but all of the satisfaction of a wet blanket. It was born of frustration.


Let me start by explaining the Milan coreografia, which was the only win on the night. It was a depiction of characters from an American cartoon from the 1930's called "Popeye." Popeye the sailor, complete with his 1899 tattoo, punches Bluto, the big bully wearing an Inter jersey. Meanwhile, the adoring Olive Oyl, in Milan colors, looks on in delight. But the most brilliant part of this coreo is the character known as Wimpy, the guy with the hamburgers. In the cartoon, he would always say "I will gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today," which is a direct reference to Inter's €472 million debt and their inability to pay their players last year. Absolutely freaking brilliant.

That was as good as it got. Well, there was the poignant message from Shevchenko, draped in a Ukrainian flag, appealing for unity and peace, at the beginning of the match. There were also the many appeals for peace in Ukraine from fans, ad board, and more. Aside from that, it was a Derby as usual on the pitch. 


Saelemaekers forced Handanović into the first save in the tenth minute, followed by a shot from Theo Hernández that was just wide. After that, Theo was mixing it up with his old pal Dumfries, remnants of the Derby in February in which a frustrated tackle on Dumfries in the final seconds saw him sent off. A stern warning from Mariani seemed to be enough to keep them on relatively good behavior for the rest of the night. 

Romagnoli had a great save in the 23rd, but in doing so seems to have injured himself, and he was subbed off shortly thereafter, replaced by Kalulu. Leão then channeled his inner Castillejo with a couple of "what was he thinking" shots. Tomori headed a Calhanoglu free kick wide, and then Krunić also sent a shot way over after a perfect delivery from the unpredictable Saelemaekers.

The better side of the unpredictable tonight

The second half saw Leão send a powerful shot in, but Handanović rose to the occasion. In some countries, Skriniar and Giroud are legally married now, but sure, that was not a penalty, ref. (sarcasm) Krunić's effort wound up in the side netting. 

I nearly lost it when Lautaro Martinez stamped on Maignan's bad wrist. So dirty and only a yellow for it. But after treatment, Maignan was able to continue. We'll see if he is truly okay, as we know he probably played with a fracture for a while before.

I swear if Lautaro Martinez broke Maignan....

Florenzi had a shot straight at Handanović, Kalulu had an important clearance on a Dumfries cross. There were a bunch of substitutions, and there was a lot of effort, but in the end, it was scoreless. Milan had 13 shots, but only three on target, Inter had seven, with only two on target. Inter have now played 403 minutes in all competitions without scoring. Ouch. Sucks to be Inter.

Frustratingly nothing like the Rui Costa-Materazzi Derby

The now archaic away goal rule, in its final incarnation in these semifinals, will benefit Milan in the event that both teams should score in the second round. But after this match, that seems twice as unlikely. Even if Milan definitely looked more dangerous in creating chances, both teams struggled to finish. This match was born of frustration.

This post inspired by the music of James' "Born of Frustration"

Our next match is
Serie A Week 28
Napoli vs. Milan
Sunday, March 6 • 20:45 CET (2:45 EST)

Milan 0, Inter 0: Born of Frustration Milan 0, Inter 0: Born of Frustration Reviewed by Elaine on 5:08 PM Rating: 5
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