MN: Cardinale could alter Milan’s project to hire Conte as Pioli replacement

By Isak Möller -

Stefano Pioli is under heavy scrutiny and could be forced to leave his position at AC Milan in the coming weeks. Antonio Conte’s name has been thrown around but to secure the manager, Gerry Cardinale would have to change the project. 

Although the topic has exploded in the last few weeks or so, Milan fans and newspapers have been discussing the post-Pioli era for quite some time. And while Conte has been brought up almost every time, it has never made complete sense from Cardinale’s perspective.

As stated by Pietro Mazzara in his latest editorial for MilanNews, Conte could be the perfect man to turn things around for Milan, looking for a new challenge in Italy. However, it’s also true that Cardinale would have to change the project he has outlined for the club, which didn’t include a demanding prominent/world-class manager when he took over.

We wrote about this exact subject at length on our Substack, which you will know if you are a paid subscriber already. Based on everything Cardinale has said, and what has filtered from the club, we described why Milan hiring a world-class manager is unlikely.

With that in mind, if Cardinale were to make a concrete attempt for Conte, it would really be remarkable. Not necessarily in a negative way, but while plans often change the project is supposed to be a bit more rigid.

Tags AC Milan Gerry Cardinale Stefano Pioli


  1. Conte with his CL record, which is worse than Pioli‘s, is surely not a worldclass manager. He is maybe a world class league manager, but sureky not overall.

  2. For all his winning mentality and bravado,Conte has several things working against him, his 352 is very ok, but when things don’t go as planned, he tends not to have a plan be, in other words, he is a one trick pony.
    Then his constant demands for expensive signings that might work or might not work are not sustainable in modern football, just look at what happened at Inter, the team he used to win the league were ok, all he needed to do is make certain additions, but no, he wanted to gut the team and spend money he knew Inter did not have, the next thing he throws a tantrum and leaves.
    The same thing happened in Juve, in Chelsea he had everything, and a club willing to spend, but because of his unruly nature and frankly limited man management skills he was sacked.
    At Spurs he very well knew how the club operated and what they had in terms of finance and players, yet he accepted the job, and soon after began to raise he’ll, and his petulant nature came out, he was promotly sacked.
    Despite what people say Milan has good players both on loan and in the team, even the youth team has interesting players, so a total overhaul is not necessary, their should be targeted buys to fill the spaces, and more Italians need to be brought into the team, players like Krunic, Kjear, Florenzi, Mirante, Giroud, Chukweze should be let go, Calabria too should be analysed critically and a decision has to be taken on keeping him, and we also need another strong defensive midfielder, and another creative and intelligent midfielder, as for the attack, if we get a one striker it’s ok. Jovic should be retained and enhanced, then one of the young strikers we have on loan should be brought back, either Colombo or Lazetic, Maldini too should be assessed properly, without a doubt sending CDK and Alexis was a mistake, which should be corrected,we need a coach who will give everyone a chance, that’s what we need, Pioli is simply incapable of changing or improving, he has a habit of discarding good players for no reason, and bringing in players who don’t perform, and keeps playing them , or totally lacks the courage to use young players when an opportunity arises, we need the management to be brave and look at young coaches, even our past players should be looked at, but Conte is not the answer, he will not workout.

    1. Alexis is yet to score and CDK still struggles to hit an open goal. I am not saying that these players have 0 qualities, but for Milan it is not enough.
      Colombo is also fine at Monza for the forseeable future

      1. Cdk is much better than he is playing at Atalanta.
        Yes, he is missing some easy goals but every player miss these chances.
        At his current age, its very normal. He is not a worlds best player but he is very good player for Serie A atleast now.

        His struggles are mainly due to new country, new language, coach who dont support mentally even the fans. LEAO took more than 2years to play somewhat better.
        Its a shame Pioli didn’t see anything in him to sell out

    2. I agree with your first paragraphs and general assessment of Conte, but not really (or at least not yet) with the last.
      Given the current lack of chemistry between players, and the fact that we have many newcomers, it is unreasonable to let go of all the players you mentionned. Giroud is still our best striker, Calabria and Florenzi are our only right backs and some of few italians in our team, Maignan might go and Sportiello is injured to just ditch Mirante. While Chukuweze has been a flop most of this season, he is showing signs of improvement. You said that sending Saelemakers is a mistake, but he has yet to have a goal or an assist with his new team, despite playing more these recent games, while both his replacements have already scored and assisted on more that one occasion.
      But overall, I agree, for many reasons, that Conte is not the answer.

      1. Florenzi gives us nothing, Calabria is a very mediocre player, we have Italian players we could get who have the necessary quality of speed an size, Belanova ,Zanoli are two good players we could use, they have speed, size and stamina, on the left, we could use Bartaserghi, even Pelegrino would be better as a left back, look at his clips and movements, I this season I have been watching a lot of our on loan players, and Alexis is performing well, he is intelligent, has a very high work rate, and tactically and technically very good, it’s because of Pioli that all these players are not blooming, watch Leao and Theo you will see that their overall game play and intelligence is not improving, as for Chukweze, you will see he will not last long in the team, except we can get a new coach who works on him and improves his movement, and execution time, for the sake of our future Giroud needs to leave at the end of the season, he loses a lot of balls, and is very wasteful, the club should rather concentrate on Jovic and Okafor, and Leao should try and play in the centre, if not, with all his talent, he will be a one trick pony…

        1. Sorry but I don’t agree at all here. Both Florenzi and Calabria have been crucial to the scudetto winning teams and have had a lot of good games. It’s one thing to bring another RB to rotate with them and/or add depth, but to get rid of them completely is beyond comprehension. Pelegrino has played one game so far, it’s too early to gamble on him being good when he has yet to prove himself.
          You seem to like Alexis, but again, reminder that he is a LW/RW who yet to either score or assist A SINGLE GOAL this season !! It’s acceptable for a rightback or a midfielder, but as winger this is unacceptable. And he has already played with for many seasons, and had many chances to prove himself.
          Neither you or me can predict the future of Chukuweze, but I can see that he has improved and already scored and assisted (which Alexis has yet to do).
          As for Giroud, if you can get a starting striker than can score in the double digits each season, then I’ll agree to let him go, but until then, he is, to date, our most prolific striker.

  3. It’s interesting how bad decisions continue to compound.

    Maldini wanted to move on Pioli. Cardinale sacks Maldini. Nothing has really changed. The squad may have a little more depth but it’s not like Maldini wouldn’t have improved the squad.

    Now we’re going to sack Pioli not really having learned anything new and appoint a manager to go for titles in a significant change of direction.

    I’m not a genius running a big club but I can say that if they want Conte to be anything other than a shitshow, there is a whole structure that will need to come with him (on and off field). Is Redbird going to pay for that?

    The current plan is the right one. Milan has just spent 10 years in the wilderness and doesn’t have the capital to for a quick run back to the top.

    The smart decision here is to bring in a coach to grow with the squad.

        1. Sure you can if the scudetto race is already over in December, you’re out from UCL and keep dropping points against teams such as Udinese & Salernitana,

          With the current course Milan will finish 10th and waiting until the season ends would be a catastrophe.

  4. No Cardinale Conte has never advanced in the champions league with any team so I presume that that we need a Good tactical coach like Hans flick or motta, Cardinale if you want Acmilan to be competitive team both in league and Europe

    1. Is that all that matters to you? The Champions League? Many leagues has Conte won? More than the bald fucking Judas we have now. Maybe start small before shouting about champions league eh?!! Do you think those shitty players that the Triumvirate Furlani Moncada and pioli brought in are good enough? They aint. Fasobelli clones

  5. Data analizying genius strikes again. Just admit that u dont know a shit about football and let profesionals to pick a coach. Oh crap,i forgot u fired proffesionals who actually know football.My bad.

      1. Giampaolo was one of most promising managers out there at the time but sometimes things don’t really work out. Gasperini at Inter for example. Pioli was someone many of us didn’t want in the first place but he brought us Scudetto.

        1. I don’t think at this stage gasperini is comparable to gianpaolo. Gadperini didn’t work out at one club whereas Gianpolo was a one hit wonder

  6. Data analizying genius strikes again. Just admit that u dont know a sh*t about football and let profesionals to pick a coach. Oh crap,i forgot u fired proffesionals who actually know football.My bad.

  7. I wonder. People say we dont have players for conte style but when i look at them its very clear that it would work.. The counter that he could set up with these guys would be blitzfast. And lord Pioli already proved they can play 343.

    Getting Conte would be a step in the right direction but they would need to find middle ground, he isnt getting a 200M€ budget each season 😀

    1. Conte would defend & counter against EVERY team. Not just against the teams that you have to play like that, like Inter for example.

      It is hard to watch, as negative as Allegri’s. And honestly, can you see Ibra and Conte coexist?

        1. Do you remember watching Italy during his time? Remember we kept complaining about him always using utility players like Giaccherini? Remember how unwatchable it was?

          I do. And I wouldn’t want that at Milan. You may feel different. I just don’t think it’s a good fit. Because aside from the broken bridges and a “maybe” on a Scudetto, there’s nothing else he would bring.

          1. i dont watch italy games. Or any national games in general. boring stuff. All i watch is the eu and wc finale. if im in the mood

  8. Conte is only good for when a team has already been built and you want a short term scudetto while accepting you’ll have to find another new coach and rebuild again in three years.

    Milan are not yet built and Conte is incapable of building teams.

    Thiago Motta is the kind of coach who will actually build a team and have players fighting for him.

  9. Does anyone really believe we would get Conte??? Realistically people actually believe that lol.

    In order for that to happen 2 things would need to occur:

    1. Redbird would have to give him a salary that would make him the highest paid coach in Italy – surpassing Allegri at 7M/season.

    2. Redbird would have to give Conte a sizable transfer budget (100-150M) so he could buy the players he wants for his system.

    Question: in what world does anyone actually think our cheap/frugal owners with their Moneyball approach would agree to any of this?????? Does anyone think Conte (who has a giant ego) would come otherwise?? Lol

    I doubt we spend 5M this January on transfers then all of a sudden we are going to sign Conte and give him a huge war chest to buy players?? Keep dreaming gents.

    1. And for the record we shouldn’t even want Conte. Motta (who we have a realistic chance of getting) would be top choice or De Zebri (but I doubt we can afford him and many EPL teams will throw $$ at him).

  10. Conte would be a HUGE step backwards in every possible way. I’ve mentioned it before but there are many cons to a single pro.

    He’ll win you the league in a year or two.

    1. Expensive
    2. Terrible European Record
    3. Requests expensive players
    4. Not in line with RedBirds spending philosophy
    5. NEGATIVE FOOTBALL: defend and counter. Complete step backwards from what Milan have been trying to do.
    6. When he does leave, unsatisfied, he will set the place on fire and alienate players.

    I pray Gerry does’t hire him. I am hoping ibra in his advisory capacity talks Gerry away from Conte and towards somebody modern with better football philosophy. Someone who could actually promote, develop and improve younger players.

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