AC Milan 1-2 Liverpool: Lethargic Rossoneri finish bottom of Group B despite taking lead

By Oliver Fisher -

AC Milan did not manage to pull out any heroics in front of a packed out San Siro as they were beaten 2-1 by a mostly second string Liverpool side.

Everything seemed to be going so well when Fikayo Tomori’s close range finish from a corner gave the Rossoneri the lead and as it stood at that moment, Milan were going through as second in the group. However, the lead did not last long as Mo Salah tucked in a rebound to make it 1-1.

It was a really disappointing performance overall from the Diavolo who never showed the intensity, application or creativity to try and take control of the game, and in truth Divock Origi’s header gave Jurgen Klopp’s side a deserved lead.

Atletico Madrid’s 3-1 victory against Porto in Portugal meant it is Diego Simeone’s men who went through almost out of nowhere given they were bottom heading into this final round.

Milan head coach Stefano Pioli made five changes to the team that beat Salernitana as Pierre Kalulu, Sandro Tonali, Junior Messias, Rade Krunic and Zlatan Ibrahimovic all came into the side.

The visiting side had the first shot of the game less than four minutes in as right-back Neco Williams let fly from 20 yards out, but sent a weak effort into Mike Maignan’s arms.

Milan first called Alisson into action through a Fikayo Tomori after a free-kick was floated into the box, resulting in an early save. A few minutes late Romagnoli went down after beating Origi to a pass but getting clattered half a second later. The captain looked winded, but continued.

There was a period of pressure for the away side just before the 20 minute mark with several crosses coming in as they found joy down the flanks, the last of which resulted in a corner that Konate headed wide.

It looked as if Ibrahimovic might have squandered a big chance to give Milan the lead when he hesitated on a shot and had to settle for a corner, but the Rossoneri opened the scoring from the resulting set piece. Alisson did well to keep out a near-post flick from Romagnoli but Tomori was on hand to fire in from close range.

Maignan was called into action a couple of minutes after the goal as Origi showed great close control to generate some space but the Belgian fired straight at the Frenchman.

Milan’s advantage was not to last long as Salah equalised for the away side 10 minutes before the break. Oxlade-Chamberlain found some space to let off a shot that was parried into the path of the Egyptian, who fired into the roof of the net with a first time side foot finish.

The last chance of the first 45 minutes fell to the dynamic Origi who decided to have a go from distance but did not trouble Maignan as it sailed way over the bar, bringing to an end a first half that was certainly edged by the away side.

The first controversial incident of the second half came five minutes in as Kessie went down under a challenge from Tsimikas after a quick free-kick routine and appealed for a penalty, but it was not given and the replay showed it to be a tight call.

Five minutes after that, Liverpool took the lead through Origi. A giveaway from Tomori saw Mane fire at goal and his shot was parried by the hand of Maignan yet the rebound fell straight onto the head of the Belgian who finished smartly.

Just before the hour mark, a double change came from Milan as Pioli opted to introduced Alexis Saelemaekers and Ismael Bennacer in place of Brahim Diaz and Tonali.

Krunic had a decent opportunity to at least hit the target after Messias found him unmarked just outside the edge of the box, yet the Bosnian couldn’t keep his effort down and whipped it over.

Origi missed a big chance to double his tally for the night with just over 20 minutes left on the clock as a cross from the right flank found him between Romagnoli and Tomori, though he headed wide of the near post.

A free-kick from Ibrahimovic 30 yards out that hit the wall and a trademark acrobatic attempt from the Swede – each coming inside the last 10 minutes – showed how desperate things were getting for the home side.

The biggest chance came with five minutes left on the clock as Kessie got put through on goal via a Bakayoko pass but Alisson did not commit and the Ivorian put it straight at him when slotting it low was the better option.

Kessie again got put in behind and this time got tackled magnificently right as he was about to pull the trigger, which was just about the most fitting way the Rossoneri’s group stage campaign could come to an end.

 

Tags AC Milan Milan Liverpool

23 Comments

  1. Daniel Mizrachi says:

    We were missing energy, quality and depth,
    Except that everything was ok…

    The Americans need to open the wallet on January or get out!

    1. Dav says:

      Nothing was okay in this match sir

  2. Hamza says:

    At the end of the day, if you cannot beat a Liverpool B side, you do not deserve to be in the Champions league.

  3. Stam says:

    What bad changes by Pioli.

    Liverpool dominated the middlefield again despite us having on paper better players in the centre. Downsides of the double defensive pivot.

  4. Dav says:

    Bottom of the group as it should be, I don’t know what the F*CK I watched. Don’t know how the coach made the team setup but anyhow he made it, it was a trash setup.

  5. shiva says:

    It says A LOT about our team when Krunic is our best player.

    Kessie, Theo, Brahim, Ibra, Florenci, Saele all failed to show up for the game.

    We absolutely didn’t deserve to go through.

  6. Dave says:

    Shitty display, wrong setup form the beginning

  7. Geekondrum says:

    I’m still waiting for Elliot to sell this club to the highest bidder. I hope it I won’t wait forever

    1. Stam says:

      No buyer but oil sheiks now, Chinese have left.

      What did the last rich guy do? Bunch of stupid transfers and debt, debt, debt.

      Italians need to look at Germans – always net gain for Borussia and Bayern for OVER DECADE now – and how Liverpool was rebuilt. Patience, grow revenue, modernize. Klopp made a revolution at Anfield but it took him years, years when Liverpool management grew revenue slowly.

      1. Micah97 says:

        The team didn’t even try to play football.That was embarrassing.

      2. adrian says:

        But first we need to belong to someone. Elliot dont want Milan, they just overtake it from that chinese guy who borrow from them and didn’t pay back.

  8. Ibn O. says:

    I wanted it this way. Until we fix our depth issues, there’s no need stretching our squad in any competition, not UCL, definitely not Europa. The injuries (read the farce of our medical team) are undermining our campaign.

    Hopefully we get Rebic, Leao, Giroud and Calabria back soon, with Diaz finding form again, so we can end this season on a high note.

    1. Giorgi says:

      We need those players back as soon as possible. Without Rebic and Leao we resemble an impotent man trying to fulfill his marital duties in vain. And we need to strengthen our squad with players who are creative and can make a difference. (These injuries are driving me really nuts already)

    2. Micah97 says:

      We needed to qualify.Round of 16 earns you twice as much as winning Scudetto. It is very important financially.

      1. Ibn O. says:

        Where is the squad to achieve the qualification? Where? The medical team has finished it off.

  9. Dre says:

    Italian clubs need to wake up, the past few seasons has been bad for Italian clubs. I remember the days when serie A is the destination of stars from all over the globe. I remember Milan class of 2000 to 2007, full of stars, champions and zeal.

    For Milan, for God sake, this is liverpool team B and we can’t beat them nor score goal from open play, this is worse and unacceptable.
    This game shows that Milan has bunch of average players, most are young but yet they are average.
    Then Pioli make the wrong choice in bringing Bakayoko and Sele into the game.

  10. Stam says:

    Even if Elliot sells rebuild is necessary. Rebuild of finances as well, Italian clubs are heaily indebted. You cannot have 200 mil deficit every year.

    It was a winnable game, but we attacked 15 min in total…bad change, Bakayoko should have started earlier and Kessie move forward, it worked with Atletico and affter change Kessie had 2 chances and prodced perfect cross…I rarely criticize coaches, but Pioli lost us the chance to win this game…

    Save cash for summer, get Kamara, Belotti and Nketiah for, three good players. Buy Omeragic and save him on loan, this should be good.

    Now we need to win Scudetto, no excuses.

  11. Piru says:

    Now that we are out we need to full focus on winning serie A!

    1. Micah97 says:

      Based on that display,we won’t get near the Scudetto.
      That game was similar to the Sassuolo game.We took the lead,then relaxed,stopped playing and lost the game to a weaker side.

  12. Micah97 says:

    Even with Atletico winning 3-0,we have an obligation to put on a performance for the fans.Everyone was bad tonight with the exception of Maignan.
    That Liverpool team was their bench but we couldn’t even draw with Liverpool’s bench.
    That was embarrassing. Now,there is nowhere to hide if we don’t win the Scudetto. We can focus only on Serie A but our finances have taken a hit.Rd of 16 of UCL has more money that winning Scudetto.This is a costly defeat for the project. I am disappointed with how we approached and played the game.

  13. Machink says:

    Reading the comments above, everyone is talking about tonight’s match as if, now Milan have won something.
    No friend, wake up. Milan is being built from the remnants of the previous management war and the COVID-19 disaster that hit. Just a reminder, only Ibra has ever played in the champions league. And Tomori was on the bench when Chelsea were there. Can’t expect much in the champions league with a young line-up like Milan now.
    I have to wake up at 3am when I work at 7am, and have to watch my Milan lose. I must be annoyed. But face it and enjoy this. Entering champions league is a bonuses for Milan. And Milan’s youngsters are already fight with courage. Goodbye Champions league, see U next year.

    #forzamilanpersempre

  14. Juro says:

    Never thought I would say this but Krunic Romagnoli (lol) and Tomori (despite the mistake) we’re our best players IMO. If this game doesn’t show management how desperately we need to sign a young dynamic striker (Vlahovic) and RW (Faivre) nothing will. Aside from Leao we do not have any attacking player that can break the lines and create scoring opportunities. If we are serious about competing against Europe’s elite teams we must spend the $$ on Vlahovic and a RW. PERIOD. We are fine in Italy, but against top European teams the lack of dynamic players is evident. Konate had Ibra in his back pocket all game. Ibra is fine for Italy, but CL is a different animal and at best he is a bench player good for 20min or so. And that all we can expect from a 40 year old. Asking him to be our savior against one of the best teams in the world in a must win match is poor management. Buy VLAHOVIC and end this nonsense. 70M is a bargain for a 21yr old….Diaz must be better as the starting ACM. He must dictate the play and provide the link to the forwards. We saw none of that yet again from Diaz. He’s young, but still has much to improve on. Theo was atrocious IMO. You are man marking one of the best players on the planet in Salah and he just switches off and let’s Salah walk in for the rebound and score. How can you not stay focused when marking Salah??? It’s insane. When is this guy ever going to learn how to defend. He cannot just run by players in CL like he does in Serie A…It’s been 3 years now and he is no better than when he started. Unreal. Mike did all he could so I’m not sure why the harsh rating – the goals were rebounds – the original shots difficult to save. Kessie for me has checked out. He Let Chamberlain walk right by him. Mentally he is done. If someone wants to pay him 9M a season let him go. Replace him with KAMARA and/or Sanches and we are fine. All in all I was not surprised at the result against one of the best coached teams in the world – playing their subs or not – they are a professional, experienced CL team. We are not there yet. I was only disappointed in the lack of urgency from the players. Yes Liverpool frustrated us, but more urgency was needed IMO. The subs brought some of that (Bennacer, Florenzi) but it was a bit too late. Hopefully it is a learning lesson for the lads to grow from for next season and for management to finally realize we need to BUY DYNAMIC attacking players that can break the lines to truly compete in Europe.

    1. Eddie says:

      You guys talk about spending but still forget that the club isn’t clear of financial fair play yet. How many times did Inter fall short after returning to UCL even Conte couldn’t get it right. Pioli is ok of a coach but I don’t think Milan will reach another height with him.
      Yes we need new signing and medical staff or whoever is responsible for the wellness of the player need to be gone. Injury cost us too much. This is where Hauge would have been useful to keep around. But we know how Pioli operate.

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