Pioli dissects how Milan were ’embarrassed’ by Spezia: “Nothing worked, including my choices”

By Oliver Fisher -

AC Milan boss Stefano Pioli has claimed that his team were ’embarrassed’ in their defeat to Spezia tonight.

Milan fell to their first away league defeat of the season as they were soundly beaten 2-0 by Spezia. Much like the Atalanta game at San Siro, the Rossoneri were outpressed and outfought in all departments who were good value for the win.

Spezia got both goals in the second half having been the better team in the first 45 minutes too. The opener came from the captain Maggiore tapped in to a virtually empty net, and the second came via a rocket from Bastoni that had Donnarumma beaten.

The result means that Milan failed to take advantage of Juve’s defeat to Napoli, and Inter can claim top spot back with a win over Lazio tomorrow night. Pioli expressed his frustration at the result after the game.

“We certainly have to react and we will do. Spezia won deservedly tonight, this is our first deserved defeat of the season, as we had not enough quality or intensity, so our opponents quite rightly took advantage,” he told DAZN (via Football Italia).

“It will be a valuable lesson for all of us, we realise that if we don’t perform at a certain level, we will be embarrassed like this. We are not a team capable of really winning ugly. We always try to focus on passing, intensity and tempo, so if we lack those elements, we are not as effective.

“We struggled throughout the game, nothing worked, including my choices and the performances of the players. Obviously, this isn’t what Milan are like, so we need to prove that from next week.”

Did you have difficulty in the pre-match? 

“Until 20:40 we were convinced that we had done everything to have prepared the match in the best possible way. We have probably been less lucid today in reacting to the difficulty. We had prepared solutions that didn’t succeed today, the match got complicated and we made other mistakes,” he added (via MilanNews).

On whether Milan’s build-up play was too slow: “The fact of not giving rhythm certainly favoured our opponents who could slide without losing spaces and references. An absolutely insufficient technical performance. Unfortunately, nothing worked tonight, both with and without the ball. We will have to start again with great determination, we have the capacity to recover.”

On Rebic: “He had a trauma, a half sprain that didn’t allow him to take the field. It shouldn’t be particularly serious, I hope to have him available for Thursday.”

On whether Ibra said something in the dressing room: “After the game there was too much disappointment, that’s right. Just get out of this field with your head down. In the locker room no one spoke because we were all disappointed with our performance.”

Tags AC Milan Stefano Pioli


  1. To be fair, Pioli reached his limit. His football was ok in ’90s. To tactical and obsolete play. And if all was ok till winter, now we see the true face of pioli’s milan. The management is also to blame because of the focus for old players instead of young talents like hauge. If they play like this, not even 4-th place is guaranteed. I was afraid of this when pioli continued instead of Rangnik

  2. @Marus, i agree that Pioli is at the end only an old school italian coach. He prefers the player with ‘“experience” rather than the player with good performance. Kalulu is imo better than dalot. He deserves to be Calabria deputy.
    And the tactic is totally easy to read. Once theo and midfield get isolated, the team has always difficulties to break the opponets defence.

    1. Pioli’s love for consistently-poor Dalot is beyond my understanding. Instead of giving the young kids, such as Kalulu and Hauge, the chances to play and grow as he had done before the winter transfer/break, Pioli has now formally reverted back to old sluggish Mandzu and poor Dalot.

      Excluding Hauge out of EL, rewarding poor performance Dalot and giving Mandzu perferential treatment, Pioli is quick losing his fairness and the principle of rewarding for hard work.

      I am afraid this is not going down very well for the the rest of the season. Signing Mandzu seems to destabilize the team spirit of this young team.

      Plus the VIP treatment for Zlantan to go TV show for four days before the match against Udinese.

      If we lose the game against both Inter and Udinese, Milan may slide away from top 4 much more quickly than we could imagine.

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