Champions League Semifinal • Inter Milan vs. AC Milan: Self-Fulfilling Prophecy

Never have I wanted a fast forward button more for a football match. After conceding two goals in three minutes last week plus having three players injured in that match, I do not look forward to watching the second leg on Tuesday. Even worse that we lost 2-0 to the 18th place team in the league on Saturday. Writing this feels more like predicting my own murder than writing a football preview. Between the injuries and the mentality, it just feels like losing to Inter for a fourth time already in 2023 is a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Can Pioli perform one more miracle? Or is he out of ideas and options?

In between being heralded as some kind of geniuses for actually brutalizing a Milan team that was self-destructing, Inter defeated Sassuolo 4-2 on Saturday. Sure, they are in form right now, but they are hardly the best in Europe. I mean just look at how we outplayed them on Wednesday in the second half, it is clear that they will choke hard in the final. (Like maybe Lukaku scoring another own goal, like he did in the Europa League final with Inter?) 

For their home match vs. Sassuolo on Saturday, The Other Inzaghi lined up: Handanović; D'Ambrosio, de Vrij, Acerbi; Bellanova, Gagliardini, Brozović, Mkhitaryan, Dimarco; Lukaku, and Correa. The only player definitely missing will be Škriniar, although Correa is in doubt as of this writing after coming off at halftime on Saturday with muscle fatigue.

More Tonali strength, less Inter brutality, please.

Pioli got some good news when Leão returned to training on Saturday and then completed most of training with the team on Sunday, so is expected to be available for Tuesday. Messias and Krunić did not train on Sunday, but are still hopeful to be called up for the match against Inter. Also available will be Thiaw, who had been suspended on Saturday. Pioli may well start him ahead of Kjaer, who played a full 90 minutes against Spezia. His physicality may be a plus against Inter, although his inexperience could also be costly.

The muscle Pioli needs to neutralize Inter's brutality?

The big miss in this match will be Bennacer, who was injured by his former friend and teammate, Calhanoglu last week and reportedly awaiting surgery on his knee. He has been crucial to our style of play, and also has three goals and two assists this season. Brahim Díaz is likely to move into his spot, but was completely dominated by Inter's physicality last week, so is almost more of a handicap than a replacement for Bennacer. Florenzi is also still missing to injury. Pioli's lineups and tactics have been so heavily criticized in every match, as he seems to have run out of inspirationEven before the first leg, we discussed on the preview podcast Pioli's unhealthy obsession with this tie, and what it could cost us for next season.

Serial scumbag Calhanoglu feigns concern after ending Bennacer's season.

Milan will not only need a completely perfect and focused performance from the defense, but will also need at least two goals plus penalties, or ideally at least three goals, all without conceding. Considering Inter have scored six goals and conceded zero against Milan in this calendar year, that is quite the improbable dream. Far more realistic is that Inter will score more goals, or perhaps Milan could hold them to a nil-nil draw on a very good day. But that still ends our Champions League campaign for this year.

They are going to have to dig deeper than ever before to reverse this score.

Sure, Milan played better than Inter in the second half last week, but still lacked the goal. Milan have only scored six goals total in as many matches since knocking Napoli out of the Champions League, while also conceding six goals. I do believe in miracles, and the legendary Milan DNA, but I have also witnessed too many massacres in my life as a Milan fan. Why everyone wanted this matchup, I will never understand, because the risk of losing to these snakes is a fate so much worse than losing to anyone else in the competition. Starting this match two goals down in this tie is not so much a foregone conclusion that Milan will be knocked out, but given the way Milan's mentality has been suffering lately, it is more of a self-fulfilling prophecy.

This post inspired by the music of Måneskin's "Zitti e Buoni"

Our next match is 
Champions League Semifinal
il Derby della Madonnina
Inter Milan vs. AC Milan
Tuesday, May 16, 2023 • 21:00 CEST (3pm EDT)
This match can be streamed LIVE on Paramount+ in the U.S. 

Champions League Semifinal • Inter Milan vs. AC Milan: Self-Fulfilling Prophecy Champions League Semifinal • Inter Milan vs. AC Milan: Self-Fulfilling Prophecy Reviewed by Elaine on 3:30 AM Rating: 5
Powered by Blogger.