After almost 30 years, Lazio win their first game on San Siro to worsen Milan’s season. An open game with a lot of chances but some small details were enough to declare the winner. Here’s what went down
Milan (4-3-3): G. Donnarumma; Calabria, Duarte, Romagnoli, Hernandez; Krunić, Bennacer, Paquetà; Castillejo, Piątek, Çalhanoglu
Lazio (3-5-2): Strakosha,Bastos, Acerbi, Radu; Lazzari, Luis Alberto, Leiva, Milinkovic-Savic, Lulic; Correa, Immobile
Spirit without quqlity is not enough
Lazio came into the game with an underestimation to Milan’s mentality. It is stunning how Pioli turned Giampaolo’s scared team into a team full of confidence and an enjoyable one. Most of the players are playing in their natural positions which helps to give them the confidence they need.
However, the spirit is not enough as long as the team lacks quality. It was obvious in many occasions that Calabria cannot manage to get used to the formation while Duarte so far lacks the first-team quality. Lazio took advantage of this to press the left side of Milan by the strikers and the right side by the winger Lazzari. As a result, they created many chances of which, a header from Immobile gave Lazio the lead. Other than the defense, Milan played their best half this season. Castillejo with an exponential improvement was very effective on the right side while Hernandez keeps shining on the left side and proving that by assisting Milan’s only goal to Piatek. The only surprising performance was from Paqueta who was not doing well.
In the first half, Castillejo got injured and left the pitch with tears after his great performance allowing Rebic to come in. He was the exact opposite of Castillejo, shockingly cold and only a filler to the right side throughout the whole game. The fans were demanding to let him play but his performance last night has certainly lowered his chances as it shocked the fans as well.
Another disappointing sub was Leao who came in the second half. Surprisingly he did not add much to the attacking force since it was the point of putting him in for Paqueta. He was the least pressing player which gave Lazio’s defense enough room for passing which defeats the purpose of playing him.
A player who was a true warrior last night was Bennacer. He fought for every ball, helped in building attacks, and covered so much distance to support the team both offensively and defensively. Another player who has been playing well uner Pioli is Calhanoglu. He is playing in his natural position behind the striker and it is clear that he is enjoying his football now. The same goes for Paqueta who did mention that in an interview that he is playing the way he prefers under Pioli. However, the defense still needs to be a point of focus. In the 83rd minute, another mistake from a defender costing Milan all the points. Duarte with bad awareness giving Correa enough space for a through ball to finish the game for Lazio.