Tomorrow evening Bologna face of against AC Milan. Both teams have the same amount of points, 21, and are hoping to add to that tally. Milan have struggled this season, and they fired Vincenzo Montella a couple of games ago. The expectations of him rocketed over night as the new owners went on a frenzy in the Mercato. Montella got sacked after weeks of speculation, and in came former legend Gennaro Gattuso, who is yet to win after two games in charge.
Gattuso in charge:
Gattuso’s first game in charge of Milan was against bottom side Benevento last weekend, in a game that ended with Benevento getting their first point of the season. That it was Milan who were the first team not to beat Benevento is quite typical of their season, as they have performed well under what’s expected of them given their total amount spent during the summer. Gattuso was in charge of his second game Thursday night, as Milan lost 2-0 against Rijeka in the Europa League. The game was not of importance for Milan, as they had won their group regardless of the result, but Gattuso would still have wanted a positive result going into the game against Bologna. He decided to rotate his team a lot, as he gave the opportunity to the likes of André Silva, Patrick Cutrone and Davide Calabria. Their first-eleven is therefore fully rested, and they will therefore not have fatigue to blame a bad performance on, if they were to lose against Bologna.
Milan have struggled all season, but there have been some players that have impressed. Suso have continued to develop for them, and Bonaventura is a player who is always capable to cause problems for opposition defence. Fabio Borini, a player who most ridiculed Milan for when they loaned him, has impressed in a wing-back role this season. His work-rate never fails to impress, and is the type of player that coach Gattuso wants in his team.
Even though some players have performed well, Milan’s season has been mostly composed of negatives. As the team has performed badly overall, singling out any particular player would be harsh. Milan have struggled as a unit, and they are second to last in kilometres run each game. This stat does not have to mean anything, but it is interesting to know that they are a team that does not run as much as most teams in the league. As Bologna are a team full of intensity, especially against the stronger sides, this can give Bologna the edge needed to get a positive result.
One of the phases of the game that Milan have struggled with is up front. Nikola Kalinic has not impressed after his transfer from Fiorentina, while André Silva has not been given the chance to shine. Cutrone has a couple of goals to his name, but he too has not been given much of a chance. Milan are currently without a goal at home since the middle of September which is quite shocking.
Overall, despite Milan’s struggles this season, they will still be a very tough opponent Sunday evening. They are a team full of quality players, and it should only be a matter of time before they fulfill their potential. However, given their bad form, and lack of confidence, Bologna can achieve a positive result with the right attitude. Given their performances against the stronger teams this season, optimism should be high going into the game.
Do you think Bologna can upset the odds and extend Gattuso’s bad start as head coach?
Photo: Bologna FC