Longoni: There are ‘no longer any doubts’ about Pioli’s fate – who should replace him

By Oliver Fisher -

Andrea Longoni believes that Stefano Pioli’s fate is now sealed and that AC Milan will change coaches in the summer, and he joined the crowd of people who want Antonio Conte to arrive.

As we enter the business end of the season, there is no doubting that Pioli is under pressure to keep winning games, not only so Milan have a chance to finish second and go deep in the Europa League, but because it seems his future is on the line.

The pressure dial was cranked up a bit earlier in the week when owner Gerry Cardinale admitted he is not satisfied with not being top in Serie A, pointing at the number of injuries as being a real problem.

However, Pioli’s side gave a response given the victory at the Olimpico against Lazio. It was difficult victory which however confirmed once again that the team are at the side of their coach.

Longoni spoke during his weekly column on MilanNews and dedicated a large part of it to the future of Pioli and the head coach position at Milan.

“Cardinale in London effectively announced a revolution in view of next season, a revolution that will be led by Zlatan Ibrahimovic. We’ll see if Furlani, in addition to having been officially downsized, will also see his adventure as Milan manager come to an end,” he began.

“However, there are no longer any doubts about Pioli’s fate: he will pay for the results and record numbers in terms of injuries. Finding ourselves 13 points behind Inter today, with one game more played, is simply unacceptable.

“It must be said that Maldini had taken a long view on many things, including the need to invest because the gap with Inter was evident.

“While waiting to understand the developments on the corporate issue and the possible entry of Arab capital, there are beautiful promises from Cardinale about the desire to win, but in fact, to date, only words.

“The hope for those who have Milan in their hearts is called Ibra: today the fans must cling to him. Because his desire to excel is demonstrated by the facts in his past as a footballer and now he will try to apply it in his new career as a manager.

“For this reason, for the power that has been given to him, I refuse to believe that he can hand over the bench to coaches like Lopetegui or Gallardo.

“For this reason, it is reasonable to hope that the definitive choice may fall on Antonio Conte. In this regard, I want to propose a little game, born in the Go Milan Go WhatsApp chat:

“Milan-Udinese 0-1, Lecce-Milan 2-2, Atalanta-Milan 3-2, Salernitana-Milan 2-2, Milan-Bologna 2-2, Monza-Milan 4-2, Milan-Atalanta 1-1. Here, now try to imagine the same games with Conte on the bench, change the results and count the extra points.

“I can easily see at least 13 more (obviously there is no counter-proof): with these Milan would be fully in the Scudetto race today, despite not having Inter’s squad.

“The coach from Lecce is the best available among those available: it would be a great sign of ambition on Cardinale’s part. Everything else is boring.”


Tags AC Milan Stefano Pioli


  1. They should add the Juventus match too, they were simply lucky with that deflection, we outplayed them.
    Also surprised that the Napoli game 2 :2 wasn’t stated, we were 2 goals up

  2. Longoni has been on Pioli’s case since the season started. This is to appeal to the PioliOut crew.

    IMO Pioli has handled the immense pressure of being Milan coach quite admirably. The shirt is as heavy as the position in the dugout.

    1. 100%. Does he walk on water tactically? NO. COuld the results have been better under him? YES. Has he done well with what he’s had though? Absolutely.

    2. If he stays he should show us more ambition and consistency in games like he was in 2020/21/22 , and the team needs to show a clearer and more fluid style of play that is lacking right now.

  3. Even Motta would have done better than Pioli in those games. At times Pioli makes the same amateur mistakes over and over again as if he’s not learning from them. Smh

    One thing is certain whoever arrives it must be a coach who has balance in defense and attack. With Pioli this season we score a lot of goals but concede a lot of goals.

    That’s how chaotic Pioli tactics with no balance. Smh

    1. Pioli has been ABSOLUTELY inconsistent. I mean all we have to do is compare the games vs Atalanta and at Lazio. Case in point.

      I think everyone is ready for a coaching change in the summer at this point. Even Probably Pioli himself 🙂

    2. “Even Motta would have done better than Pioli in those games”
      Are you guys so sure? Remember Motta also went on a 5 or 6 game winless streak with the Bologna team. Very much like us and I wonder if he’d get the same pass at Milan. So far he gets away with those because it’s Bologna with no eyes on him but at Milan

      Plus folks also said he was consistent. Not quite. He’s about as consistent as we are. Decent streaks, draws and losses in between. The usual stuff. But who knows…he could be the next Pep. Only time will tell.

      1. And at Bologna he’s got Bologna players. He just beat Gasperini is sitting 4th all by himself. I expect even better when he has players like we do.

        1. See below. Response to Giga. I agree somewhat with u too, expectation is that he should perform better with better players though we want one or two of them. But he’ll also have additional amounts of massive pressure to always win

      2. Don’t forget that he is coaching Bologna. While they do have some good players, it’s not like they have an impressive squad. Event the best coach can only go so far with an average team.
        With today’s win over Atalanta in Bergamo (something which we couldn’t do even in San Siro) they’re currently fourth.
        That doesn’t garantee that, should he become our coach, he will succeed, but what he is doing is quite good.

        1. Not saying that’s it’s not impressive. Imo he’s been the most impressive this season bar Inter. just saying no one batted an eye when he went winless while a draw is for us is about 50 articles worth of who will be our next coach .
          Also, I think his team has tons of gems. Obv young and potential but it’s a decent team.

  4. Time will tell whether Pioli is good or bad. I’m just reminded of the times where some fans were vocal of replacing Allegri with Pippo Inzaghi or Seedorf (aka coaches with winning mentality who knew what it was like to win CL) or when some fans wanted Ancelotti sacked because in Serie A we weren’t winning enough… I remember a game in 2008 where we lost to Bologna in San siro 1-2 with 2 Ballon D’or players on the field (Ronaldinho, Shevchenko), plus Inzaghi, Pirlo, Seedorf, Maldini, etc

    As always the grass is greener on n the other side.

    1. To be fair when we sacked Allegri we were doing poorly. I think his win rate was 30% or similar a time, sitting in 10th in January but ofc after sold the family silver to PSG. But I did hope for a better coach than ex players. Was never fond of it. They could be useful in other areas, unless they went through their rite of passage by actually managing other teams first.
      But right now, we aren’t even close to being poor. I dont get the push to get rid of coach that has us top 2/3 in the league 🤷‍♂️

      1. Berlusconi kept complaining about Allegri. If ownership undermines the coach publicly it’s not easy Ballotelli was back to his ways, El Sharawy was sold as a superstar, but the truth was that once teams started paying attention to him, he stopped scoring (happened since the second half of prior season). Pato was gone.
        Even like that we passed the group of CL (iirc Zenit had spent 80+ Million for Witsel and Hulk among other things… not sure if the coach was Spalleti then, but I digress)

        The truth was that our team was garbage, but Berlu claimed it was the best, put Allegri as scapegoat and many fans ate it.

        Pioli is also facing similar challenges, it’s very likely we’ll have a moneyball-type dismantling and if things don’t work they’ll blame the coach. Nobody talks about the money spent for Musah when Krunic did a better job or getting Chukwueze when we had Saele working his ass off.

        Management likes to praise themselves about Jovic, a desperate move for a striker no team wanted, and no praise is given to Pioli for getting him to perform. As I said, time will tell

        1. Nice memory, I think u might have it correct re Zenith. I agree with everything u said. I had also caveated that we sold our silver….Ibra and TSilva either that year or the year before, can’t recall exactly which year. But I do recall Allegri saying when you lose players of a certain level of technical ability the whole team suffers and we did, really really massively. And like u said, only time will tell in regard to our loss in technical abilities over time (Kessie, Krunic, Tonali ….also mentioned by Pioli btw just like Allegri did) and if it’s the level of the squad OR actual coaching that’s the difference.

  5. Stop it. Conte would fly in the face of the entire project that has been sold the last five years. Noone wants him and he’s not coming. Move on.

  6. Conte really makes no sense given what we do and what we’re trying to do. This is nothing more than the Italian press trying to get their man in charge of Italy’s greatest team.

  7. Longoni is Conte fanboy and he sucks Conte balls so much that he act as if Conte would win all matches with Milan.

    Fvck, Conte doesn’t even do jacksh* with Tottenham after he got plenty of expensives players where Pioli beat him last season.

    Seriously Longoni and italian media needs to stfu with their overhype Conte.

  8. Before there was so much news about a German coach would replace him. This is not new for Pioli. Be carefull to change Coach that giving stability on the team. Hopefully Pioli still be there next season.

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