MN: Pioli’s tactical intuition pays off as Milan create a checkmate on Napoli’s midfield

By Oliver Fisher -

Part of the reason that AC Milan were able to secure a huge win against Napoli on Sunday nigh was because of the tactical application from head coach Stefano Pioli.

MilanNews writes how Pioli studied the right countermeasures to contain one of the strongest teams in the league, with the strengths being Piotr Zielinski from a playmaking point of view and Fabian Ruiz in terms of building from the pivot.

When everyone expected the usual 4-2-3-1 with Franck Kessie as the attacking midfielder Kessie, Pioli decided to use a 4-3-3 that worked brilliantly. Fabian Ruiz and Lobotka were deeper while the attacking midfielder was Zielinski, but they were each contained and that forced Napoli to bypass the middle of the field for the whole match.

Ospina, Koulibaly and Rrahmani were forced to go long to Osimhen or the attacking winger because Kessie never let Fabian Ruiz have time, while Bennacer took care of Lobotka with a battling performance and finally the coverage of Sandro Tonali on Zielinski forced a ‘checkmate’ of sorts.


Tags AC Milan


  1. Pioli should stick with the 4-3-3 formation till the end of the season because of the form of Ismael Bennacer due his his high pressing food and fluidity in distributing the ball which is very healthy for the team and Will be the easy way to lift the scudeto

  2. Insist on 4-2-3-1 was/is wrong for this season. Becuase we don’t have a real No.10 in our squad. even Brahim is not a real No.10. I remember he plays as a winger for Man.City and R.Madrid.
    When management, didn’t replace Chalhan, we must play 4-3-3 or 4-4-2 from start.

  3. See? 4-3-3 works.
    Not the system we have been using for ages, but without the 10, it is better.
    Can you use it more often please pioli?
    Also, if you play without leao/rebic from start, try a 4411/451
    That way, Saelamakers might play well, (maybe try Theo as Left Mid?)

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