Milan 3, Inter 2: Good as Gold

Other than a few minutes here and there where Inter tested Maignan and Milan's defense in general, Milan dominated for most of the game. Several Milan players turned in Derby-worthy performances, but it was our two Ballon d'Or nominees who really demonstrated their quality in the 3-2 win over Inter. Leão with the two goals and the assist was unstoppable in their end, while Maignan made every stop possible at our end. They were both performances that were as good as gold.

Everything Leão touches turns to gold.

The fire began during the handshakes, with Calhanoglu refusing to shake hands with Theo Hernández, something Theo should have been grateful for, honestly. Calhanoglu talked a lot of smack ahead of this game about how badly he was treated during Milan's Scudetto celebrations, and how he would get revenge on the pitch, but he mostly got owned by Bennacer again and again, made an assist to assist on the first goal, and was generally the lowest rated player on the pitch, according to SofaScore. Even his best moment of the game, a shot near the end, was saved by Maignan. Ironically, it was his statements that Pioli used in the dressing room to motivate his players. I assume the Turkish Traitor went home and cried just like the Curva Nord kid in the Milan coreo.

Sucks to be Calhanoglu

Theo has a very complicated relationship with Denzel Dumfries. As in when they are on the pitch together, things always get physical, and cards always happen. This time, it only took nine minutes before both of them were on a yellow, and there was no love lost throughout the match. Shockingly, no one was sent off in this one, though there were a total of eight cards handed out by Chiffi, including one to the other Inzaghi... you know the one who always respects the refs? Hahahaha.

Not even 10 minutes in

Bastoni almost scored an own goal for us, his night probably saw him go home and cry, too. After a couple of chances for either side, suddenly, Inter caught Milan with their pants down and let Brozović run unchallenged, and of course he scored in the 21st. 1-0 Inter. Not the way we wanted our home Derby to begin. 

But as Milan does in these types of situations, they reacted. Calabria sent a header wide. Giroud's chance was deflected wide, and then it was Calhanoglu's perfect pass to Tonali, who sent it over to Leão, who put it past Handanović for the equalizer. 1-1 all, game on.

Just the first Portuguese to ever score in the Derby. No big deal.

Skriniar made the mistake of running into Giroud's boot from behind, and since his boot was chest high, and Skriniar crumpled to the ground, Giroud saw yellow for dangerous play. Milan continued to create chances that were stopped or went just wide, including efforts from Giroud, Tonali, Theo, De Ketelaere, and more, but to no avail. There was a collision of heads as Messias collided with Barella, but after treatment he seemed okay. Basically, it was a hot-tempered Derby with a lot of chances.

Skriniar gets lectured by the Frenchman

The second half was more of the first. Beginning with a Theo Hernández chance that went wide, and then De Ketelaere would get his first yellow, but at least he fully shoved the guy, it was a proper yellow. Then in the 54th minute, Giroud scored a big one to take the lead, with a perfect assist from Leão. 2-1 Milan. About five minutes later, Leão scored his second, all him, after Giroud gave him the ball and Handanović had no answers. 3-1 Milan. 

The big guy with another big Derby goal

Then the subs. Brahim Díaz replaced De Ketelaere, and it became more obvious how important the Belgian had been to our overall game. Worse, Inzaghi made a triple sub of Dimarco, Dzeko, and Mkhitaryan, changing tactics, and making almost an immediate impact with a a goal from Dzeko assisted by Mkhitaryan. 3-2 Milan. 

Devastation.

This was the part where Milan were tested, Maignan specifically, he would make three important saves to keep us in the lead, including the epic one on Calhanoglu. Saelemaekers and Origi came on and brought fresh legs, and Tonali got his own yellow card in the 77th. Then Kjaer and Pobega came on, with Kalulu sliding over to the right to replace Calabria. 

Also golden, known to make Turkish Traitors cry.

In the 93rd, Calhanoglu body slammed Bennacer, because he was so frustrated that the Algerian had gotten the best of him all night. Which shows Calhanoglu's character and quality, that he would have to take such a cheap shot to try to hurt the Milan player. Leão earned a yellow in stoppage time, and with a chance at each end, the intense Derby was over. Milan had won! Milano was red!

Hell yeah.

A couple of notes... Theo Hernández already has three red cards in five matches. We racked up five yellow cards in all as a team this time, that is not going to be helpful down the road. However, Leão had quite a game for his 100th Milan appearance, and does not show any signs of slowing down. Also, despite dropping points twice, Milan are still undefeated. That consistency is what paid off last season, so let's hope it does once again.

So predictable, they had to make it into coreo

Playing in front of both Elliott owners the Singers and also Cardinale, RedBird founder and new owner of Milan in front of a sold out San Siro was phenomenal. The fans were amazing, Milan's coreo was fantastic, but the win was spectacular. So amazing to see the players encircling Pioli at the end to sing "Pioli is on Fire" with the whole stadium, too.  And while it was clearly a team effort, our two Ballon d'Or nominees really took it up a notch - Leão with the brace and the assist, and Maignan with the epic saves. Milano may be Rossonero, but they truly are as good as gold. 



This post inspired by the music of Cake's "The Distance"


Our next match is 
Champions League Group Stage
RB Salzburg vs. AC Milan
Tuesday, September 6 • 21:00 CEST (3pm EDT)

Milan 3, Inter 2: Good as Gold Milan 3, Inter 2: Good as Gold Reviewed by Elaine on 3:55 AM Rating: 5
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