Milan 4-0 ES Sahel: Loftus-Cheek grabs a hat-trick in friendly win

By Euan Burns -

AC Milan got a comfortable win under their belts against ES Sahel on Saturday evening as they won 4-0 at Milanello. 

The star of the show was undoubtedly Ruben Loftus-Cheek, who managed to grab a superb hat-trick in the first half. Olivier Giroud added the fourth from the penalty spot shortly into the second-half.

The game started with a fair few rough challenges from ESS who were not going to be beaten lightly. Despite that, it was Milan applying all of the pressure.

That pressure was not yielding much in the way of clear cut chances until 13 minutes in when Christian Pulisic produced some good work down the right wing.

He was able to get a cross into a crowded box and Ruben Loftus-Cheek was there to volley into the far corner, putting the Rossoneri 1-0 up. It was Rade Krunic who played a great pass out wide to give Pulisic the opportunity to get a cross in.

Things carried on in exactly the same vein after the game, with attacking play being fairly evenly spread between the two wingers, Rafael Leao and Pulisic.

There was a long spell with minimal action at either end, but Milan felt they should have had a penalty when Leao went down just inside the box under a challenge from the ES Sahel goalkeeper. The referee was not interested and play carried on.

That sparked a flurry of activity. Leao showed what he can do down the left wing by beating his man and playing the ball low into the box, where Loftus-Cheek was waiting again to smash it in off the underside of the crossbar.

He wasn’t stopping there, though, with the Englishman grabbing his own and Milan’s third goal not long before the half-time break. It was an incredibly similar goal to the first of the game, with Pulisic managing to get the ball into the box from the right and the Englishman sweeping it into the back of the net.

It is clear that Loftus-Cheek will be expected to get right among the goalscoring action this season, making late runs into the box and utilising his excellent finishing skills.

Milan made a strong start to the second half and a lofted ball into the box from Pierre Kalulu was handled on its way down by a defender. Olivier Giroud stepped up for the penalty and smashed it into the top corner, making it 4-0.

Pulisic continued to be heavily involved down the right wing, linking very well with Loftus-Cheek to create opportunities in the box for Giroud which he was not always able to take.

Milan eased the pressure midway through the second half and were struggling to create any chances of note. ES Sahel were occasionally able to get some joy in the final third but they were not creating actual chances.

Pioli was clearly looking to get a lot of minutes into the legs of the players that he started the game with, as he still hadn’t made any changes with 10 minutes to play. Given Milan are in action on Sunday morning against Novara, this starting eleven is likely to have little involvement in that game.

Tags AC Milan Ruben Loftus-Cheek


  1. So, very soon is start against always tough Bologna. Couldnt win them last year because we didnt have anyone who can actually score the goal.

  2. I think we are getting better but not a real tough test. This team I think will do well this season. Krunic though meh…

    1. Considering the opposition were defending in low blocks like a weaker Serie a side, it’s not bad and it gets them prepared for dealing with low blocks

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