Milan 5, Sampdoria 1: Bon Voyage

Milan hosted Sampdoria for the last time in Serie A for at least a season on Saturday, and sent them off with a 5-1 goalfest. Giroud got his first hat trick at Milan, but Quagliarella answered back with his first goal of the season. Brahim Díaz played like a man possessed, and Leão had a goal and an assist to go along with his Serie A Player of the Month award he picked up before the match. I doubt it was the sendoff that Sampdoria had in mind, but it was a match in with both teams played to the final whistle. At full time, Sampdoria players were soaking in the atmosphere, probably enjoying the last time they will play in a stadium of 70,000 fans for a while as they journey into Serie B. Bon Voyage.

Giroud sending Sampdoria off in style with his first Milan hat trick.

Milan attacked relentlessly, taking 19 shots with nine on target. Poor Ravaglia, the goalkeeper, had a night to forget, even if, as a backup keeper, playing in front of such a big crowd might be something he might want to remember. And credit to Sampdoria, they did their best to keep Milan from scoring. They also had some wicked chances of their own, albeit with only three shots on target.

Player of the Month award. Check. Scores opening goal. Check. Gets the assist. Check.

The scoring began with a Leão goal from a Brahim assist in the ninth minute. 1-0 Milan. After the injury, it was great to see Leão not only score, but playing with such ease and joy again. That also made his involvement in his 21st goal of the season (13 goals, 8 assists), his best tally yet, and he was also the first player to be involved in more than 20 goals in a Milan shirt since Ibrahimović, according to OptaPaolo.

Unfortunately, Milan did concede next, with the evergreen Quagliarella showing why he is still playing in the top flight at the age of 40. It was all even at 1-1. I was disappointed to give up the clean sheet, but simultaneously happy for him to finally get a goal this season. A bittersweet moment.


Then Giroud was unleashed. In the 23rd, he also scored from a Brahim Díaz assist, that little guy was everywhere. 2-1 Milan. It was as if the number 10 was making up for all of the matches he had been overpowered and restrained by decent defenders.

Next up, Leão was fouled in the box by Günter, who received a yellow, while Milan were awarded a penalty. Fourneau, the head referee, did wait for a VAR check, but it was pretty obvious. At the end of the check, Giroud stepped up and took a merciless penalty to make it 3-1 Milan.

He is one of us.

After the half, and a Léris shot scare from a hungry Quagliarella cross, Pioli replaced Messias with Saelemakers. While Giroud kept proving to be a nightmare for Sampdoria and Ravaglia, it was the little guy, Brahim, who would score next. In the 63rd, after a great buildup from the team starting all the way from Maignan, it was Tonali who would finally cross it in for the speeding Brahim. 4-1 Milan.

A relentless machine tonight, Brahim finally got his goal after a brace of assists.

Five minutes later, Giroud finally got his hat trick, his first in the Milan shirt. Leão sent the ball in, and although he was held by Nuytinck the entire time, and had to wrestle as he turned his body to shoot, he still slotted it past Ravaglia one last time to make it 5-1.

The only way to stop Brahim was to sub him off, so Pioli did so in the 70th, bringing on De Ketelaere. He also had a bit more freedom, and almost had an assist with a great little back and forth with Saelemaekers, the latter who sent it just wide in the 79th minute. 

Does that count as an assist for Nuytinck?

Pobega, Kjaer, and Ballo-Touré all got about ten minute cameos, but thankfully, for Sampdoria, the hemorrhaging of goals was over. It was only the second time that Milan had scored five or more goals under Pioli, and an absolutely essential three points if Milan are to have a shot at a top four finish. 

I think we all wanted to lift Brahim up like that (at least a little) after this performance.

Matches like this are actually not always the most satisfying, a David and Goliath matchup. But it was a David and Goliath matchup that Milan finally showed up as a Goliath for, which was very satisfying. 

It was also heartbreaking, knowing what Sampdoria were facing. However, right after the match, there was some potentially very good news in that a concrete offer had been made for the club that would at least save them from bankruptcy, so all was not lost for them, either. Now Milan can march on to Turin to face Juventus next Sunday, and Sampdoria can sail off to Serie B knowing that they might actually be back in Serie A after a season or two. Bon Voyage.

This post inspired by the music of Muse's "Feelin' Good"

Our next match is 
Serie A Week 37
Juventus vs. Milan
Sunday, May 28, 2023 • 20:45 CEST (2:45pm EDT)

Milan 5, Sampdoria 1: Bon Voyage Milan 5, Sampdoria 1: Bon Voyage Reviewed by Elaine on 11:59 PM Rating: 5
Powered by Blogger.