Watch: Kjaer and Tonali assist two reported Milan targets on international duty

By Oliver Fisher -

Simon Kjaer and Sandro Tonali each got their names in the assist column today while in action for Denmark and Italy respectively.

The first came from Kjaer as the centre-back pinged a long ball over the top to Atalanta striker and reported Milan target Rasmus Hojlund, who scored his fourth goal of the international break (he would add a fifth) but the Danes ended up losing 3-2 to Kazakhstan.

Then it was Sandro Tonali’s turn. The midfielder was on corner duty for the Azzurri against Malta, and another reported Milan target in Mateo Retegui finished inside the area to make it two goals in two starts.

Tags AC Milan Sandro Tonali Simon Kjaer


  1. why the young players always shine in other club than milan ? beside milan already have good young player, otherside they dare to play that young player from starting lineup.

    milan have chaka traore and dozens good young player on primavera but they scared to play it on first team. thats why never rocketed the talent..

  2. This is interesting. I watched both games and Tonali did very well as a sub against England, being very dangerous and dynamic. So today he started against Malta, assisted the two goals and had an overall great performance, being named Man of the Match with a high score of 8.6 by FotMob. He played like the great Tonali we were used to, last season. However he’s been struggling at Milan this season and has been harshly criticized by fans, here.

    So, I wonder: he’s the same man. Obviously he was a much better fit for the Azzurra under Mancini than he’s been for Milan under Pioli. Isn’t it, then, an indication that the problem of his poor performances for Milan resides with Pioli rather than with Tonali himself?

    Full disclosure, I’m a big Tonali fan and my Milan jersey is the #8. So, I could be accused of bias. But facts are facts; two great assists (which resulted in our two only goals) and great playing for as long as he stayed on the pitch today, to the point of being rated the highest among all Italian players and being picked as MOTM; that’s not just my take.

    Something is wrong with Milan and I’m starting to think that it’s Pioli. People here say “he is not responsible because he hasn’t been given enough good players.” Well, we had not one, not two, but freaking 16 players called up to their national teams in this international break. That’s enough for a full squad of 11 starters and 5 subs.

    So, these 16 players were found to be good enough by their national team coaches to be called up; however when we put them all together at Milan, they struggle big time; it seems like the sum is actually worse than the the parts. What must we conclude from this?

    By the way, we are tied with Napoli as the two Italian teams with most players called up for the various national teams this break. So, Napoli and their 16 national team-caliber players are doing great at club level, while our 16 national team-caliber players are not.

    For me, the conclusion is inevitable: it’s the fault of the head coach who may be unable to best utilize these players in his chosen formations and tactics.

    I mean, a club has freaking 16 players good enough to feature for their national teams, and keeps failing in the domestic league? That’s not right. That’s a very objective indication of coaching failures. Opinions?

    1. You are right. Pioli is out of depth and ideas here. I have never seen a tram play for so long under a coach and have no adventure. No stamp on the game. Milan play is so random.

    2. Tonali is not the problem. It’s the coach, the management and owners and I dislike the lack of italians here, doesn’t feel very milan anymore… reminds me more of Inter milan of the past. Disjointed, inconsistent, lack of strong identity, etc.

    3. Why did Tonali play well last season for Milan?

      Why were Milan playing like champions until the last 5 minutes against Roma????

      The fact is football (and life) is complicated. It’s not simply a case of Mancini v Pioli or whatever.

      In fact both Mancini and Pioli went from managing a team through an incredible run/winning titles to a collapse where Italy failed to qualify for the World Cup and Milan have lost their mojo.

      One thing we can hope is that these games have given Tonali some confidence and form which he can bring back to Milan. They have also shown that Tonali can play alongside a holding type midfielder like Cristante so maybe he can recreate that with Bennacer and/or Krunic (the latter also getting a confidence boost).

      But the key thing that everyone needs to understand is that it’s not as simple as “this manager/player is awesome/awful”. It’s more complicated than that. This is not a computer game. It’s collection of random human beings who have good days and bad days, who have certain chemistry and who click in certain situation, and the million dollar question is how does one combine all that to make the most out of the players available.

    4. 16 called up but barely any feature. Only Bennacer, Theo and Maignan are the ones that are REALLY playing for their NTs. When it came to the big match vs England Tonali wasn’t exactly trusted. You got Barella, Jorghino and Veratti. Tonali started vs Malta. MALTA! Also club football and NT football are two different things. For the NT it depends on the quality of the team and potential available players. Krunic can’t start for Milan but at Bosnia they dont have as many players to choose from so he always gets a start. Or sometimes a player can play trash for their club but is impeccable at the NT like Klose back in the day.

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