GdS: Pioli to shuffle the defence against Rennes with Kjaer’s involvement a doubt

By Euan Burns -

Stefano Pioli could be forced to think up yet another defensive combination on Thursday night against Stade Rennes, with Simon Kjaer potentially unable to start the game. 

As has been reported by La Gazzetta dello Sport (via Milan News), the small muscular discomfort that Kjaer suffered in the Serie A win over Napoli on Sunday could lead to him sitting out the Europa League clash against Rennes.

That would leave Matteo Gabbia as the only fit centre-back, and the game is expected to come slightly too soon for the return of Malick Thiaw.

For that reason, it seems likely that Theo Hernandez will have to play as a centre-back again, as he did for most of the winter period.

That opens up a gap at left-back, one that could be filled by a first start for Filippo Terracciano. Whilst naturally right-sided, he is very versatile and is no stranger to playing on the left flank.

Davide Calabria is also going to be out injured which means that Alessandro Florenzi is going to be needed at right-back. A back four of Florenzi, Gabbia, Hernandez and Terracciano is very different to how Milan started the season, but it shows the benefits of having players who can operate in multiple positions.

Tags AC Milan Rennes Simon Kjaer


    1. Well apparently he was trusted to be brought on in the final minutes against Napoli to help keep a clean sheet…,

      Here’s a thing I don’t understand – we’ve seen this numerous times over the years – managers (not just Pioli) refuse to take chances by starting youth players but will bring them on later on in games when the team is chasing or defending a goal.

      I remember they used to bring Locatelli on late in games, same with Cutrone when we were chasing goals, and Pioli has done this with Carmada, Simic and Terraciano.

      It’s just bizarre. And it’s not a criticism of Pioli specifically.

      I think it’s just part of the general lack of plan/direction/respect/understanding/concern or whatever for youth players.

  1. Maybe it’s your understanding that is flawed. Coaches are usually paid to win, they field the best players, and bring in subs who are less skillful. This is ok after 60-70 min when opponents are more tired, less so if these subs had to play from the start.
    Also young players can’t always keep concentration high for long stretches of time and are more bound to make mistakes.

    Also apparently Kjaer got injured…

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