CM: Giroud gives Pioli a scare – now he must balance commitments and work load

By Oliver Fisher -

When Olivier Giroud went down clutching his ankle during France’s win over Ireland last week there was a lot of apprehension, and that is for good reason. write how Milan are once again ‘clinging to Giroud’, both for Saturday’s derby and even more so – if it were possible – for the Champions League curtain raiser three nights later against Newcastle.

Milan discover that they cannot do without their trusted centre-forward. While there are other elite players in their positions in the squad like compatriots Mike Maignan and Theo Hernandez, Giroud is the goal scorer and the match winner in the big occasion.

He scored four goals in the first three league games and that is why his ankle sprain set off alarm sirens in and around Milanello. Giroud’s immediate return to Italy and then subsequent treatment have averted the risk of his absence on Saturday, but it did reveal a lot.

At the end of the month Giroud will celebrate his 37th birthday. He will do so as a world champions and a Champions League winner among other honours, but the scare of the last few days makes it clear Pioli cannot use him every match of the season.

This, as as an immediate consequence, it is right to think about Tuesday’s match in the Champions League, because fatigue after the derby or worse a relapse of his injury would risk leaving Pioli without a convincing alternative.

Divock Origi and Lorenzo Colombo left during the summer window while Noah Okafor and Luka Jović arrived, but at least for the moment neither of them guarantees the same contribution as Giroud.

The first is not a prolific goal scorer, while the second is more of a gamble given his decline since leaving Germany. Moreover, Jović was signed on the last day of the window and has barely trained with his new team-mates.

There is an argument to be made that three points against Newcastle United would in fact be more important than the three points in the derby, because it is the first game of six in a tough group and not the fourth out of 38.

After Newcastle there will be two consecutive away matches, against Borussia Dortmund and PSG, so the Rossoneri risk having to fight until the final round to try and get through and unlock all the useful prize money that comes with it.

That is why Pioli must judge the situation carefully, balancing priorities between domestic and European action, while also balancing the minutes that the Frenchman plays.

Tags AC Milan Olivier Giroud


  1. This year champions league is more gamble for Milan than reality.
    Out most important competition is Serie A, to reach best possible place and qualify for next year UCL in highest possible pot.
    Borussia, Psg and Newcastle are all games where we are not favourites so that competition this year should be used like competitive gaining experience this year.
    We might won some games or lose. But in Serie A we are more than favourites for more of clubs In the league.

    1. o please.. BD is not that strong and newcastle is just a random eng club that got oil money 2 years ago..
      Ofc we are favourites pass the group

  2. I absolutely agree. I’ll rather gamble the game against inter than the game against Newcastle. That game is highly important. Yes the derby is important as well too but not as the Newcastle match.

  3. We must treat both game equal i think, yes ucl first match is important, but winning a derby match is always something to remember (like 6-0), and if not now (derby or vs ncu) how we could know how good is our bench?… please dont make more adli like last season pioli

Comments are closed

Serie A Standings

Live football scores . Current table, fixtures & results.