Litmus tests on the cards as underwhelming Milan wildcards must respond

By SempreMilan -

Yacine Adli and especially Luka Jovic have struggled to perform on a Milan-worthy level at the start of this season. Therefore, with the January window coming up, both may have squandered their chances already. 

As highlighted by our colleagues at, not many knew what to expect of the duo as we headed into the season. The outcome, most would agree, has been underwhelming and the coming weeks will be decisive.

Jovic has never taken off

The striker was the last arrival of the summer and he has certainly looked the part. He arrived on a free transfer from Fiorentina and Milan have the option to extend his contract. However, the Serbian hasn’t exactly impressed when given the chance.

To make matters worse, the physical and athletic condition has never truly been convincing and the lack of confidence is evident. Not only has he failed to score a goal for the Rossoneri, but he has also failed to hit the target with a shot.

A disastrous contribution, which has forced Pioli to overwork the 37-year-old Olivier Giroud. But the Frenchman needs rest, as demonstrated by the goal drought that lasted about a month from September to the end of October.

It feels like Jovic’s future at Milan has been decided already. Having said that, Pioli will try to give the former Frankfurt and Real Madrid man a few more chances before the final deadline in January, given that the Rossoneri are expected to sign a striker then.

Chance squandered by Adli?

Adli, then 21 years old, arrived from Bordeaux for around €8m. He remained at the French side on loan for one season and fully joined the Rossoneri in the summer of 2022. His arrival came with some expectations as the fans were eager to see his obvious talent in action.

After one season with minimal playing time, he agreed to switch position to defensive midfielder ahead of the current campaign. And this switch seemed encouraging after five league appearances, plus in the Champions League, but now the situation has changed again.

Pioli seemingly doesn’t trust the Frenchman enough, seeing as he hasn’t even played a minute in the last two games. Instead, the manager has used Tijjani Reijnders and Yunus Musah in a midfield tandem, while also relying on Rade Krunic for some games. Not to mention that Ismael Bennacer will soon be back, which means Adli’s space could run out completely.

The future of the duo

So, what does the future hold? The consensus appears to be that both need to do better. That doesn’t mean that it’s over, because Pioli will give them new chances in the coming weeks. Especially considering the ongoing injury crisis that is affecting the team heavily.

Considering that Olivier Giroud will miss the next two games due to suspension as well, Jovic is bound to get a few more chances. But as is the case with Adli, there won’t be a plethora of these chances and now is the time to convince Pioli, as well as the fans.

Tags AC Milan Luka Jovic Yacine Adli


  1. Adli has played well. That one is tough to understand even for those of us who like Pioli.

    Jovic was a gamble and proving to be a bad one. Gambles are gambles and this one did not pan out.

  2. Not sure why both pobega and krunic have played over him. There’s no way you can say either of them did anything of note, even ruining chances with seemingly easy passes botched. Which is particularly what Adli in good at

      1. You’re either a troll or brain dead. Krunic is half the midfielder addiction is and only plays because our manager is an imbecile

        1. Of course the whole trainers camp is brain dead too. They forgot to ask you, the great manager who won scuddetto 347 tumes.
          I am just stating the fact. Krunic, Pobega, Musah and Reinjers are bettet than Adli. Its just fact that is why they are starting and playing while Adli is not. Eat it.

      2. Its not the 2 are better than adli. But they have different characteristic that can be advantageous or disadvantageous depend on the opponent.

        But for now i think krunic really in bad form. Even his safe play that was his advantage over adli, now become risky play because he got many blunder. For adli i think he is still got his usual form, risky play at defensive phase but superior creativity when attacking. And last pobega i think he is still in ususal form, not playing bad but of course not great either because he is not a great player to start with

        1. Pobega created way more chances than Adli and much better defensively. Again its not my opinion it is stats. Nothing to complain about.

  3. Even with bennacer back, you still need cover playing with 3 midfielders. Adli should be picked over pobega and krunic, so even with a healthy midfield choice of bennacer, reijnders, loftus cheeks, musah, and adli, he should still get minutes

  4. Adli has done reasonably well, much better than Krunic who in all aspects has looked the best part of a player that needs some serious work on his technique, especially his passing which is quite awful to behold. Give Adli a chance at least he brings creativity, and passing range, in the PSG match we all saw why Krunic never makes a forward pass, he couldn’t pick out a needle in a stack of needles.

    1. I take it you mean you don’t like how Krunic passes which is fair not that his passing isn’t accurate (which it is). I think it’s a style issue people seem to have than an accuracy or technique issue because he’s a technical player as is Adli but both suffer in some aspects of technique in general

      1. “not that his passing isn’t accurate (which it is).”

        Well… It is next to impossible not to get the pass backwards to own players though. Krunic’s passing success would go down to decimals if he even tried to pass forwards for a change.

        1. If Krunic’s accurate side and back passing is considered a proof that he’s a great passer of the ball, then, by the same logic, all ball playing center backs should be ranked alongside renowned playmakers such as Pirlo, Zidane, and Xavi.

  5. As I stated countless times, Adli is not Milan level. He can not defend like Krunic or Pobega. He can not advance like Reindgers Musah and Pobega. The only thing he did was long passing and only in his first game. There is not defense nor real thread coming from him. I watched some of his Bordeaux plays. He was same there more or less. His level is League 2.

    1. I tend to agree. I am not sure how squad composition works, whether there is always scope to having something a bit different, but Adli pretty obviously does not fit into the systems Pioli wants to play.

      He seems to be a pretty talented player when it comes to his range of passing and his vision, possibly his touch as well. I maybe wouldn’t go as far as not Milan worthy but his deficiencies mean that he wont fit.

      While Adli has class, nothing suggests that he is so good that they shouldn’t just follow the initial instinct and release him to someone that wants to use him. It was worth trying him as more of a deep lying playmaker. Problem with development at Milan is that the team is so flaky Pioli struggles to give players development time (which is starting games and playing 75 minutes, not playing 15 minutes at the end of the game).

      If he is going to develop into the player Pioli wants him to be he need 1,500 minutes of real playing time (not 15 minute appearances at the end of a game) and we need to ride the bumps.

      We should be good enough for it.

      This is a very similar situation to the AFL team I follow, albeit Milan is a better team (not low to mid table battler).

      Sometimes you need to take a step back and look at what your team wont let you do to understand its real quality. If we can’t ride the bumps with a player like Aldi to develop him in position, at least against the weaker league sides, the team cannot be that good.

      1. The weird thing is that even though he(Adli) doesn’t fit into Pioli’s plans or tactics, he plays the role in a different way and seems effective but in an “offense is the best form of defence” sort of way. But that has its limitations which is exposed when goals are conceded by his bad defensive positioning. I see why Pioli plays Krunic and it’s for balance. He wants the mezzalas to do the work of goal creation with someone staying back and so far the mezzalas have been a let down apart from Loftus-Cheek (Reinjders has been getting a pass so far and I’m not sure why). That being said, I’d really like to have seen the Adli experiment for a couple more games. I wonder what will happen to him when Bennacer comes back..

        1. He is already benched. When Benacer is back I really hope Krunic is benched and Adli is sold. He is much better off to have more minutes in some low level teams.

    2. Own-goal Krunic and Slowbega are great defenders? What haha. How many games did Milan lose with Adli playing regista? I’m not saying he’s world-class by any means but Krunic and Pobega are straight bums

    3. “As I stated countless times, Adli is not Milan level. He can not defend like Krunic or Pobega. ”

      That’s the first time ever that anyone has claimed Pobega can defend. That kind of claim destroys any hint of credibility of the commentator. 😀 😀 😀 😀

  6. As much as I defend Pioli, his confidence in Krunic should have gotten him fired by now. Adli is the kind of player that has shown he just needs more minutes to reach the level needed. Krunic has shown his best days are behind him.

  7. This article makes no sense in relation to Adli. He HAS performed (considering his limited appearances) rather well when given the chance. Let’s not forget Adli is much younger and hasn’t had the consistent starting minutes over the course of his young career and he’s being asked to play an entirely NEW position.

    Jovic on the other hand is atrocious. He as had many years as a starting striker in Germany Spain and Italy and he still cannot perform. He was a huge MISTAKE by management.

    Poorly written article. Don’t compare Jovic with Adli – that’s like comparing apples and oranges. Terrible

    1. It’s crazy to think Jovic was training all those years with Real Madrid and he’s MLS-level. How does he not develop at all? Terrible

  8. As a basic comment, Adli is, and always was, an ATTACKING midfielder. I still think he is a squad player, because in his actual position, he is behind Reijnders, RLC, Bennacer, and even Musah.

    In the meantime, I know Musah’s playing history, but when you watch him, he is NOT a creator (one nice cross to Pulisic notwithstanding), he is a DESTROYER. He needs to be taught to distribute instead of trying to dribble out of every situation, and as soon as that clicks, he should be our main DM.

    Adli is decent cover, but with the talent in our midfield, I just don’t see him fitting into a starting three, or even four, when we are (relatively) healthy. That said, he is better than Pobega or Krunic, and poor Romero should be playing much more……with the boys.

    1. Best comment on the thread. I totally agree with you about Musah and Adli but I disagree with you about Romero. They should have not gotten Chukweze and had Romero be Pulisics deputy. They should have spent the Chukweze money on a better striker to begin with. It’s ridiculous how one footed Chukweze is. He’s just another one trick pony like like Junior Messias

  9. Tough to really compare the situations of Adli and Jovic. Pioli’s handling of Adli over the last 2 years has been criminal. At this point the management should consider letting him go to a club where he at least has an opportunity to thrive. He is a skillful player that could thrive in certain systems. I wish the best for him. Meanwhile, Jovic just sucks.

  10. Adli hasn’t played well? That’s rubbish, he has played fairly well. Adli currently is arguably as good, if not better than Krunic, but one thing is for for sure. It makes more far more sense to play him and develop him than playing the 30 year old Krunic who in June 2024 will be one year away from the expiry of his contract. Play him Mr. Pioli !!!

  11. “ut as is the case with Adli, there won’t be a plethora of these chances and now is the time to convince Pioli, as well as the fans.”

    Wrong!! He has convinced the fans ages ago. Just make a poll asking the fans who should play, Krunic or Adli, and you’ll see the majority goes with Adli.

  12. To be fair to all players here, when has Jovic really been given a shot. He started in games that milan were at their worst and no player played well, the rest coming in with barely any minutes to do something. A player must gain momentum and confidence and doing that just will make any player fail.

    Chukwueze I had high hopes for and I don’t know what category he should fall into. He’s been very underwhelming but his chances have been limited too.

  13. Aldi is too slow and gives away the ball in dangerous areas. He’s better than Pobega and Krunuc, but both of them are below average. Eletu is better than all 3, but he won’t get playing time until Pioli is fired.

Comments are closed

Serie A Standings

Live football scores . Current table, fixtures & results.