Torino 3, Milan 1: Going Down In Flames

Just looking at the lineups felt ominous, like when you smell gasoline and hear someone about to strike a match. It was perfect that Pioli would choose to be remembered like this, leaving so many starters on the bench, allowing the bench players to create a deficit too big for the starters to come on and dig them out of. The 3-1 loss away to Torino definitely gave burning down the house vibes. But to be fair, fans online gave up on this team ages ago, and the Curva Sud have boycotted now four weeks in a row. How can they expect the team to show up or care when the fans could care less? It feels like the entire club has just given up and is going down in flames.

Pioli was on fire, and now he's burning down the Club with him.

The first half was beyond disappointing, as Pioli left Maignan, Calabria, Leão, and Giroud on the bench, and Theo Hernández stayed home because he had flu symptoms. Pulisic and Okafor attempted to create a few chances, but it was Zapata who opened the scoring in the 36th minute. 1-0 Torino. 

The disappointmen is real.

One would think that Milan fans might have given up their silent protest when the Torino fans sang "Milan, Milan go f*ck yourselves" in Italian over and over. Those kinds of chants usually do inspire an exchange of insults between fan groups. But no, the Curva Sud care more about whatever it is that they are pretending to care about than their own team or pride (no one else knows or cares anymore,) and they let the fans of the tenth place team humiliate them throughout the match. And their players.

No surprise that less than five minutes after this first noticeable occurrence, Milan conceded a second goal, Ilić with another header. 2-0 Torino. Both exposed Milan's defensive frailties that have been amplified this season by a rotating backline due to a plethora of injuries. That, and Pioli giving Terracciano his first start with Milan in this match, in which he demonstrated exactly why he had been left on the bench this whole time.

Terracciano has so much to worry about learning...

The second half kicked off, and within mere seconds, Torino's captain and former Milan player Ricardo Rodríguez scored his very first goal for Torino. 3-0 Torino. The first time Torino had scored three goals against Milan since 1959, according to Opta Paolo. Milan showed a little bit of fight, and created a number of chances that would have been called back for offside or for a foul or whatever. Jović did force Milinković-Savić into a point blank save in the 50th minute.

Then Masina attempted to strangle Pulisic in the box. After a VAR review, Feliciani awarded a penalty to Milan. A sliver of hope wrapped in a gift from a bad foul. Bennacer stepped up and smashed it home to make the score 3-1 Torino. Jović attempted a bicycle kick, but like the rest of Milan's efforts, it did not work out for him.

Bennacer's penalty pulled one back for us.

Pioli began to sub in the 61st minute, bringing on Rafa Leão for Okafor. Then Terracciano, having played so little since arriving in January, was cramping up, so Pioli sent Florenzi on to replace him. In the 78th minute, Giroud replaced Musah, and Pobega replaced Bennacer., hoping for the win. Meanwhile, Tomori was shown a yellow card. It was not going well.

Giroud and Leão took several shots in the final 15 minutes that were over or saved, and Tomori also took a shot that was saved in the 92nd minute. But at the full time whistle, Torino, who Milan had destroyed 7-0 both mentally and physically here just three years ago, had fallen to il Toro. Even with 60% possession and 16 shots, Milan only got four on target and scored the penalty. 

2 of these 3 men will likely be unemployed next week. 

Pioli's stubbornness and unwillingness to lineup his best 11 every times to put the match to rest before giving the bench players some time is one of his very worst flaws. And we saw it on full display in this one. But he is not the only one going out in flames. At least the team are definitely in Champions League next season, secured their spot to face Juventus in the Suppercoppa, and will definitely finish in second place.  Long after Pioli is replaced by who knows what kind of manager this owner will choose, these fans will still be here. And while it would appear that Piol is the one lighting the match, I believe it is the Curva Sud and fans online who are going down in flames.

This post inspired by the music of Måneskin's "Gasoline"

Our next match is 
Serie A Week 38
Milan vs. Salernitana
Saturday, May 25, 2024 • 20:45 CEST (2:45pm EDT)

Torino 3, Milan 1: Going Down In Flames Torino 3, Milan 1: Going Down In Flames Reviewed by Elaine on 3:15 AM Rating: 5
Powered by Blogger.