Pioli walking a tightrope: Expectations, reality and the reverberation of Maldini’s words

By Christian Montegan -

Amidst the aftermath of AC Milan’s Champions League semi-final exit to Inter last season, former technical director Paolo Maldini sent a stern warning regarding expectations for the club.

As we said last season, we are not yet built to handle two tournaments. We said that to the media, but also the club owners, so they know that full well,” Maldini told SportMediaset.

“This journey started four years ago, which took great results, both economic and sporting, built a young foundation for the squad and there are roughly three years difference in the average age of our squad to Inter’s and that lack of experience tells at this level.”

In Italy, some fan bases are more impatient than others – and Milan certainly falls into that category.

Many Rossoneri enthusiasts viewed the Scudetto victory under Stefano Pioli’s reign as the pinnacle moment to truly kick on and compete not just domestically, but in European competition.

Suddenly, the Milan faithful forgot the words to the ‘Pioli is on fire’ chant at the San Siro when the team was struggling last season to scrape into the top four.

Yet, the 58-year-old was hailed as a king when his exemplary tactical approach in Europe helped guide the seven-time European champions to their first UEFA Champions League semi-final since they won the event back in 2007.

Then it all unravelled once again when city rivals Inter performed an inch-perfect display across the 180 minutes to ask further questions regarding Pioli’s future. Watching the Nerazzurri now and witnessing the quality they are producing consistently as arguably a top-three squad in Europe is an indication of the large discrepancy between the pair whether Milan fans like it or not.

It’s this unhealthy and toxic back-and-forth discussion about Pioli’s tenure that is so inconsistent to the point where the ‘#PioliOut’ crew are waiting at every opportunity to pounce whilst rubbing their hands in anticipation of a downfall.

Take Milan’s recent run of results as an example – one loss in 13 matches across all competitions before suffering a shock defeat with 10 men for the majority of the second half at the hands of Monza.

The cries from the majority were to rotate the squad and provide opportunities for bench players which in turn would help rest the regular starting line-up. So, Pioli made five changes to the one that featured in the Europa League first leg against Stade Rennes, but was still criticised for making too many alterations.

Yes, you can point to the fact that resting three forwards was a gamble. However, it was individual mistakes that ultimately cost Milan the match. Are you beginning to understand the pattern of toxicity?

In the 1-1 draw against Atalanta recently, Milan dominated possession and took the initiative to push for the three points but were halted by the second-most in-form team in Serie A. Again, there was immense dissatisfaction aimed toward the manager despite the team doing everything but put the ball in the net.

You can’t help but feel the vibe around social media and supporters that Pioli can never catch a break from unnecessary scrutiny. Every manager at the top level is not immune to criticism, but what Pioli has had to put up with in the media has been nothing short of embarrassing.

There seems to be plenty of moaning about Pioli when he doesn’t get results, but what about when he does find a way time and time again to steady the ship when things are going pear-shaped? Is that not an indication of the Italian’s ability to be tactically flexible and open-minded?

Unlike Massimiliano Allegri’s defensively stubborn ways at Juventus, Pioli has demonstrated that he wants to play attacking and expansive football, but can also revert to winning ugly when required.

This repetitive negativity amongst some (not all) sections of the Milan supporter base, whenever something doesn’t go the clubs’ way, is now becoming tiresome and boring.

Milan has ample upside looking ahead to the future. Economically, the club is as strong as it’s been for years, the youth production is shining through and is consistently qualifying for Europe’s premier club competition.

That doesn’t undermine the problems at Milanello such as the injury crisis, and Milan are a historical club built to win trophies, but a lack of focus on the bigger picture is what’s most concerning.

With or without Maldini’s presence, Milan has implemented a fantastic job off the field to stabilise a once giant of European football and set a plan in place to climb back to the top where they belong.

Could it be that the Milanisti haven’t quite established any affirmable expectations? Is it simply a case of expecting the club to bite off more than they can chew?

One thing is for certain: those expectations need to be realistic to offer Pioli a fair chance.

Tags AC Milan


  1. So we need to accept that we are a mediocre, ambitionless club. Our pathetic goals are top 4 or 5, depending on a number of UCL spots, and Pioli is a perfect coach to achieve that?

    Great, we are Roma, or worse Atalanta. Small, pathetic, club that doesn’t dare dream about trophies, but instead lives for sustainability (read that shareholder value and ROI).

    You can get the club out of banter era, but not banter era out of the club.

    1. I don’t think I’ve seen a single positive input from you on these threads…

      “ You can’t help but feel the vibe around social media and supporters that Pioli can never catch a break from unnecessary scrutiny” – this summarizes your fandom. Only complain.

      This club might not be for you.

      1. Again with the Roma or Napoli or some other tiny club mentality. This is MIlan, it wins trophies, it is expected to win everything, every time. Anything short of that is a failure.

        I know most of the folks here only know milan in the last 10 or 15 years, they’ve only ever seen youtube clips of Milan glory days. Sadly I have seen the best of Milan, through 80’s, 90’s, 00’s and sadly 10’s and now 20’s. My heart breaks every time i see young fans thinking and accepting that Milan is some poor, tiny club, from a crappy league that measures its success by how much money it can get from selling a star player or qualifying for UCL.

        I will never tell anyone, no matter how misguided they may be to go support another club.

        As fans we owe it to ourselves and our club to criticize, to always want, no demand more. That is the only mentality that will get us from where we are now, to where our rightful place in the world of football is, at the very top.

        1. Wanting more for Milan is not the same as only seeing the negative trends, Shiva. Your posts only point out the failures and come across very negatively.

          Like I said, I’ve never seen a positive input from you. This isn’t the Milan of the 90s or 00s. This is a deterrent beat altogether and over a different ownership. Its growing and developing. We all want Milan to win but it will take time and growing pains.

          But to only ever point out, shortcomings and failures is toxic.

          1. are the economic conditions of the footballing world in the 00’s, 10’s, 90’s, 80’s, 70’s, thesame as now?..@shiva…

            this is the reality we live in now: the club gone through some dark periods but with some good management these past years the ship has been steadied and the upside is we are well on our way to being a top club once more…

            after all all other top clubs in europe all had dark periods where both on-field and off-field dey were in shambles..hav a care and rearrange your belief and evaluation systems, u still looking at Milan with old eyes

        2. You do realize that before Pioli and the American ownership Milan hadn’t won the Scudetto in over decade, and missed out on Champions League for 7 years and were in massive debt. Now they’ve won the Scudetto and are in Champions League every year.
          You would think listening to the ridiculously negative comments on here that before Pioli Milan were winning trophies every year.

          1. You do realize time doesn’t start when you started watching football, that before American ownership, and 7 years before that Milan won 18 championships, 7UCLs, 5 Italian Cups… Milan before banter era exists.

            I know most of the kids here were not even born when Milan last won UCL, and only know Milan as a failure, a small midtable, good for nothing club and to them this looks like a huge success.

            Those of us burdened with age and decades on top of decades of watching Milan make poetry on the pitch and win everything know that Milan is a colossus among giants and the only measure of success in professional sports is trophies won.

          2. Well Shiva ive been a milan fan for over 30 years and is in my mid 40ies so i actually has lived through the best years of the club and even though i understand that you and others want us straight back to the level of the past we also gotta be realistic and hopefully gradually see us going back on top of the world. Being negative in our support wont help anyone either.
            For me by the way we will first be back again when we have won several consecutive scudettos, cl wins and club world cups and salted every field we play at while the rest of the football world is trembling in their pants when meeting us but we are not there yet and it will take time regardless whether we like it or not.

          3. @Shiva

            8 of our 19 (almost half) of our league titles, 5 of 7 European Cup/Champions League titles, 5 of 5 European Super Cups, 2 of 3 Intercontinental Cups, the only Club World Cup, 1 of 5 Italian Cups, and all 7 of our Italian Super Cups came during the 31 years of Berlusconi ownership. That leaves roughly 11 Serie A titles, 2 European Cups/CLs, 1 Intercontinental cup, 4 Coppa Italias, and 1 Intercontinental cup won over the other 93 years of existence. You understand what I’m doing here? Only one club on the planet has been consistently good almost every single decade: Real Madrid. Even Madrid didn’t win a single one of their 14 CLs in the 70s and 80s. Big clubs go through phases. Liverpool didn’t win sh!t during the 2000s and 2010s (except the random CL against) us, Man Utd was a powerhouse for 20 years and now they’re what?

            Keep calm man. Have a plan and execute.

          4. A small correction Vero, Real Madrid didnt win a cl in between 65-66 and 97-98 but overall i agree. Real Madrid was cursed for a long time and to be fair they was beat 5-0 by us in the late 80ies in the the then named europa cup. They was often favourites on their pedigree but nevertheless wasnt a huge factor internationally as now and i even remember OB )Odense Boldklup) from denmark throwing them out of the uefa cup in madrid in 95, Sh1t happens, even for the best.

          5. I get the point about udders we are not in the same place financially as we were in the glory days, that’s a given, but if we have the chance to improve when we were on the up, why do we settle? Especially when you see inter doing just that. In the same league, with the same financial backing. Can we say that we have really improved since the scudetto?

        3. I also want to see Milan win every single dawn trophy and see every team that meets us shiver. But we also have to see what we have and be realistic and patient. This is not a PS game.
          What we gave to look at is if the managers and the shot callers are giving the signs that this is what they want and that they are walking along that path.

          1. Dez im not sure if this was a reply to me due to the phrasing of it but yes we should be realistic as i also pointed out in my post as well.

  2. While it is true that we may have beyond realistic expectations due to the Scudetto win, but it does not negate the fact that Pioli has been inconsistent and we still do not have a clear identity, not to mention the costly oversight of not buying a proper DM. Losing 5 consecutive matches to Inter, even if they are a bit superior on paper is quite embarrassingly, Bologna had a better record recently.

  3. This is the most accurate article I’ve read on this site in a long while and precisely summarizes everything that’s wrong in the comments thread here.

    Well written, boys. Thank You.


    1. You can tell this Christian guy’s had enough. What gets me are the fans who never post anything when we’re winning, but then suddenly pop up out of the woodwork to whine when we lose.

      1. Precisely. Seems like it’s the same people, posting the same negativity and spreading toxicity.

        Which, if you point out the things that the coach and the team get right, at least it makes you sound fair. But to constantly show up here and bash the team and the coach is myopic and shows a complete lack of understanding.

        And God forbid your view does not align with theirs, all of a sudden it’s “Another Pioli lover”

        This article summarizes everything I feel.

      2. I have always posted when we win well. I will point out flaws when we win poorly and highlight good. I will highlight good things when we lose and still performed well and I will absolutely critique when we play like crap.

        The problem is everyone is hell bent on Pioli rather than the project.

        Well, in the summer year we scrapped the project amd started a different one. Pioli being a big part of that.

        I was calling for Pioli to be sacked before Covid hit. He was always a mid table coach who maybe surprised for a season and then was sacked soon after.

        He surprised me and we ended up winning a scudetto. I still saw his limitations through that time. He then had January of 2023 and that should have been it. Since then we’ve been listless and people refuse to see it.

        Set your parameters for success. Do we win the scudetto next year? The year after? When do you decide we have to change coaches? After we lose to Inter…again?

        I’ll give you my parameters for success to keep Pioli. We have to win the Europa League and come in 3rd. Anything but that and he’s gone.

        I would also be close to my preseason prediction if Napoli hadn’t been a complete bust this year. I had us battling for 4th and crashing out of all Europe. We still might.

        This article reeks of an objective view without perspective.

    2. To quote you verbatim: you’re an idiot.

      To be objective is to be fair and impartial, and to see Milan for its good and the bad.

      Your posts are always “Pioli is constantly at fault for everything. Pioli out”

      You are dense.

  4. What’s wrong with you?

    You come to a site that has editorials and articles. You don’t like it? Go to a different site.

    But to come here and threaten the publishers?? LOL!!!

      1. You mean from the guy who claimed he was paying the wages of Both Milan and this site? The one that threatened the admins to watch what they say? 🙂 That guy’s posts? 😆

  5. This is such a 2 dimensional way of thinking.
    Just because I want Pioli fired doesn’t mean that I’m hoping for Milan downfall.
    Just because I criticize Leao because i expect more from him based on his talent doesn’t mean I don’t root for him in every game.
    Just because I criticized Maldini, the director, doesn’t mean I’m insulting Maldini the great player and Milan biggest legend.
    Just because I agree 100% with Maldini’s firing doesn’t mean I’m pro ownership on all issues regarding the way they manage the club.
    2 things can be right at the same time.
    Pioli gets criticized for mass rotations this year just like he did last season because the back ups he throws out there look like they have never played together before. Which raises the question what is he doing in training at milanello , is he working only with the starting 11?
    Unnecessary scrutiny?
    Milan is potentially 16 points behind inter on the table after spending 115 mil over the summer following Pioli’s wishes. No one spent more than Milan in Italy.
    Getting whooped like they stole something in every derby.
    Didn’t get out of the UCL group stage, but he gets a pass for that because it was the group of death.
    Out of the Copa Italia early Just like last season when he lost to a 10 men Torino.
    Is it affirmable expectation for fans to want Milan to win a trophy, be that a Copa Italia? Is that a case of expecting the club to bite off more than they can chew? Copa Italia is too much? I guess so.
    You mentioned Allegri.
    There is a reason Juventus fans want him fired as well.
    They play like crap and still don’t get results even though they only played once a week this season having the highest payroll in the league.
    Our expectations should be more realistic to offer Pioli a fair chance?
    You do realize that Pioli’s has been a Milan coach for 5 years, not 5 months. He has been given plenty of fair chances.
    This was once a proud fanbase with standards. Now it’s satisfied with mediocrity.
    Defends mediocrity, be that from a coach or the so called best players.
    So called best player scores first goal after 5 months and people act like he proved the critics wrong and shut their mouths. All that after ONE GOAL after 5 months of football. Give him the Ballon d’or today. Don’t wait till the end of the year.
    They act like Milan wins trophies under Pioli every season and we are ungrateful because we don’t like his playing style or decision making during games.
    Let’s pretend that Pioli is doing a great job.
    Let’s write articles that Leao scoring is down because he has changed his playing style and he is now more selfless and more focused on passing to his teammates. Him running time after time clear on goal, not looking at his wide open teammate, and passing the ball to the opposing GK, the goal post or the fan in the stands it’s because he is trying to be selfless, not because he is awful at finishing and regressing instead of improving.
    BTW he has 7 assists, 1 less than 37 year old Giroud and just 1 more than the winger on the other side Pulisic. But let’s pretend that he has 17 assists.
    He is supposed to be your best player. 4 goals 7 assists after 26 games in the league.
    Inter best player 22 goals, 2 assists after 25 games.
    Inter 2nd best player Thuram 10 goals , 7 assists.
    But how dare you say anything critical of Leao?
    Let’s pretend that Maignan is the best GK in the world even though he is one of the worst in serie A this season.
    Let’s pretend that Theo is the best left back in the world, even though he plays 1 good followed by 2 bad games.
    Same people have no problem criticizing the Calabria’s, Slobega’s, Krunic, Jovic, Musah, Reijnders. It’s OK to criticize those players, but calling out the so-called top players on the team when they are a*s means that you are not a Milan fan.
    Screw reality. Let’s pretend then.

    1. Demanding excellence, criticizing failure, always expecting club to win and bring home trophies. This is how you support and show love for your club. This is the only way fans can push the club to do better, to be better.

      Accepting that just qualifying for UCL, or qualifying for knockout stages is any kind of success other than financial one, is letting the club down, letting its fanbase down and letting yourself as a Milan fan down.

      1. Exactly.
        But fans has been convinced by a small minority that Milan squad is not good enough, that Pioli is doing miracles and Milan finishing top 4 is actually overperforming.
        Milan doesn’t have the squad to win the UCL. Any Milan fan with common sense gets that, but there is only 1 team in serie A that has better squad than Milan’s. That’s inter and the quality gap isn’t that big for Milan to be 16 points behind with 12 games left in the season.
        That’s after Milan was 25 points behind Napoli at one point last season. Was Napoli squad 25 points better than Milan’s or the coach made the difference. Same squad with basically the same players is 30 points behind inter on the table 7 months later.
        Is Bologna squad only 4 points weaker than Milan’s or the coach makes the difference?
        Is Bayer’s squad better than Bayern’s or the coach makes the difference?
        Let’s keep Pioli, let’s bring him more players this summer and let’s continue watching those same players trying to go 1v1 all game long without any sight of team concept of play.

      2. Um, no it’s called being realistic. We’re still recovering from over a decade of mismanagement, getting rid of and buying players we shouldn’t have, letting Kessie, Dollarumma, Hakan, Romagnoli, Bonaventura, leave for free, changing coaches every year, etc. and we don’t have the money of the “top” clubs either. Despite all this we’ve balanced the books, won the freaking scudetto and got to the semis in the CL. We’re only at the beginning of this beautiful new journey, my man – whether that’s with or without Pioli next season.

          1. You could be right. If I had the choice to bring in Klopp, Guardiola or even Motta, I would. But there are 100 coaches out there who are worse than Pioli imo. And we had about 10 of them before we hired him.

        1. It’s incredible the selective memory some of these people have. They don’t seem to remember what the period was like before the american ownership and Pioli came along. You would think Milan were winning trophies every season. They seem to go right from the early 2000’s to now and skip over all the time in between when Milan was in far worse shape than they are now. Milan is getting better and on the resurgence again and all they can do is criticize.

          1. Exactly – it’s like playing meat and potato football with 3 DMs under Gattuso or kamikaze-style under Inzaghi never happened. Maybe they’ve blocked it out due to emotional trauma.

          2. Where did I say anything about the ownership?
            This article is about the coach.
            Seems like most people didn’t even read it but came to argue.
            We all remember the years but those years are behind us.
            The club is financially stable, the club has a quality squad and yet the best players , who haven’t even entered their prime are regressing instead of improving. Don’t you think the coach has something to do with it?
            There is such a thing called a stepping stone coach. A coach that can take you to a certain stage in your project and can’t take you any further because he has reached his limitations.
            Happens in all sports.
            Or just because we have PTSD from the banter era we should cherish Pioli even though the team is stagnating because of his limitations because we are scared to step into unknown.
            The Devil you know, no matter how mediocre, is better than the devil you don’t.
            That’s a small club thinking.
            Berlusconi risked hiring a serie B coach and it payed off.
            Then risked again and hired a first time coach who took the team even further.
            Barca risked and fired UCL winning coach to hire first time coach Guardiola and the rest is history.
            Juventus hired young Conte, won 3 scudetti in a row after 6 years without a scudetto.
            But let’s not risk. Let’s stay safe in the middle because it can be worse. But what if it gets better? Only one way to find out.

        2. I’m kind of in the middle here. Everyone’s got good points, and yeah, patience is key, just like what @acm1899 and @dejan10 are saying.

          We can’t let our team off the hook too easily. Pioli had what he wanted, but this season, he hasn’t fully delivered, and it’s perfectly fine for him to feel the pressure.

          And hey, remember those players leaving for free? It wasn’t all on Maldini. We had this salary cap hurdle during negotiations. Maldini did a decent job with the budget and the cap, not perfect, but decent. I still recall the RLC rumors back when Maldini was in charge – fans were flipping out, but when the deal happened, suddenly everyone was thrilled. When he was brought in by the new management.

          To get back on top, we might have to make some tough calls, like giving up a top player each summer to bring in a bunch of new faces. It’s a business move that takes time to pay off.

          We need to set up a solid foundation, where selling a good player isn’t a big deal. But let’s be real, that’s gonna take time.

          If we want quick success, the current system might not cut it. Oil money sounds tempting, but personally, I’d rather have a self-sustaining club than go the PSG route. Although, looking at how Man City is doing, there are pros and cons on both sides.

      3. Its a process, Shiva. You have presumably followed Milan through the banter era. You can clearly see MARKED improvement in the team since, yes?

        Is it a finished project at this point? NO. Are we ready to challenge in Europe with this roster? NO.

        Are there indicators that Milan does not intend to improve as a club to get to that point? I haven’t seen any.

        So with palpable progress and upward progress of this club your post’s are about what exactly?

    2. Couldn’t agree more about this.
      Just to add something, Zaccheroni ended a catastrophic serie for the club ( 11th place in 1996/97 and 10th place in 1997/98 despite being coached by Capello and Sacchi) and allowed the club to win the scudetto in 1998/99 despite an impressive competition from the likes of Lazio Roma in a generally very strong serie A.
      If we follow what some say here, we should have kept Zaccheroni forever, yet after a succession of coaches, the club settled for a coach who barely wins titles named Ancelotti and the rest is history.
      I’m grateful to Pioli for the scudetto, but perhaps it’s about time to see that, while the serie A teams studied us and improved, he got stuck.
      Maybe some of the fans are toxic, I agree but maybe some have different standards and a trophyless season is for them a bad season, period.

  6. “Pioli has demonstrated that he wants to play attacking and expansive football, but can also revert to winning ugly when required.”

    So why didn’t he do the latter more against inter?

        1. Absolutely our defensive system needs work. 100% and I have voiced that here many times. Didn’t help that we had starting CBs out or that Pioli’s man marking system doesn’t always work well with the midfield we have. That can be improved. That’s on Pioli.

          BUT I don’t blame everything on Pioli like many do here. He only definitely has his faults. He’s not the pinnacle of coaching. But there are a lot of things he does right and a lot of improvements have taken place under his watch. Including the players, that Theo and Leo have become.

          1. ACM1899 I don’t think people here blame Pioli for everything. Almost everyone here agrees that he is too inconsistent. There have been times when he produced a masterpiece, than followed by a blunder. That sort of rollercoaster doesnt win many trophies. Like one of the commenters above said “stepping stone coach”. We are all grateful for what he has done in these 5 years, but to move on with a better coach. Hell, even your comment : “He only definitely has his faults. He’s not the pinnacle of coaching. But there are a lot of things he does right and a lot of improvements have taken place under his watch.”

          2. @Rosso and Neri – you’re the exception then. Most of the #PioliOut crew blame him for everything and don’t give any credit for anything either. e.g. other coaches get a pass for individual mistakes costing a match, Pioli gets roasted.

          1. They fail to dance around Man City’s defense. They also fail twice to dance around our defence during our scudetto, at that time we played ugly but with results.

          2. @Dejan10 no i am one of the #PioliOut crew. Just not midseason. In the end of the season. Midseason sacking spells disaster, plus we are still 3rd. End of the season. Doesn’t mean that i don’t appreciate the work he’s done. Credits where it’s due. Time for an upgrade.

        1. The loss at Monza was 70% down to individual errors. And if you don’t either see or understand this, then you probably shouldn’t be commenting here.

          1. And the inter loss wasn’t?

            Isn’t it the job of the coach to minimise these individual errors? Yet they keep happening…

  7. “This repetitive negativity amongst some (not all) sections of the Milan supporter base, whenever something doesn’t go the clubs’ way, is now becoming tiresome and boring.”


    1. There is difference though. It used to be aimed more toward Maldini, now that the shield a.k.a Maldini is gone, it is aimed more toward Pioli.

    1. Nah its the limitation of these boards, you can only reply to a reply of a reply and then its stops I think. I don’t think this website was built from scratch, its just the plugin they use for comments that is limited.

      Honestly, they could get a better one. You get lost in replies here after a while.

  8. Some stat for the Pro Pioli crowd.
    Up to this point of the season in serie A, week 26, over the last 5 years Milan under Pioli has given up:
    34 goals in 19/20
    30 goals in 20/21
    28 goals in 21/22
    33 goals in 22/23
    32 goals in 23/24.
    Huh, and here I was told the issue with the defense is the lack of DM and too much turnover over the summer in the midfield.
    Milan this season, with all CBs injured, no DM, “bad signings” of only box to box midfielders, have given up only 4 extra goals than they did in the best season defensively under Pioli when he had only proper DM’s , Kessie, Tonali, Bennacer, Krunic.
    One less goal than last season when there was no such turnover in the midfield, and we had the “great” Tonali.
    Defensively, the best season under Pioli, 21/22, up to this point of that season Milan had given up 16 more goals than Inter has given up so far this season, 9 more goals than Juventus, 5 more goals than Bologna, 4 more goals than Atalanta, same amount of goals as Lazio, 3 more goals than Torino.
    What does this mean?
    Milan was never good defensively under Pioli.
    It doesn’t matter if it was prime Kessie, playing next to Bennacer and Tonali, or this season Adli, Reijnders and RLC.
    The problem is the system, the set up, the tactics, the strategy of the coach, NOT the personnel and their characteristics.
    Milan should give Pioli a lifetime contract based on this numbers and fans should give him a fair chance to improve since he is an up and coming 60 year old coach.

    1. Agreed. I’m not sure any of us are saying that Pioli’s a tactical genius because it’s clear he isn’t. But imagine if we’d got rid of him right before the plandemic as someone in the comments above wanted to do… would we have won the scudetto? Would Leao be the player he is now? Would Meez be writing “MONEYBALL MONCADA!” on every post? In my mind it’s pointless to speculate so I’m just thankful we’ve achieved what we’ve achieved so far and can build from here.

      1. It’s pointless to speculate about the past, the only thing to look at is the future.
        Pioli has coached Milan for more than 4 seasons now, so we’re past the point where he needs “more time”. Yes he has won a scudetto, but that was 2 seasons ago under different circonstances, but now about the future, should Pioli stay as the coach ?
        In my opinion, if he wins the Europa League and ends the serie A in a strong fashion, he will have a strong case. Failure to do so is my opinion the end of the journey.

    2. 21/22 was a specific period and these are bad comparators. Why not wait till the end of the seasotto see where we’re at. Because after the 26th round in 21/22 we only conceded 3 more goals thereafter for a total of 31. And that was prime Kessie alongside prime Benny and Krunic with prime Tomori and Kalulu. It’s not like we can’t be defensively sound. Matter of fact our highest placed finishes the last 4/5 years correlates with our defense not with our offense. This year Inter is ridiculously good. They might concede less than 25 which is highly abnormal. Our defense is mid table. None of the last 5 years were we in the bottom half of goals conceded.

      2020-21: 5th best attack, tied 3rd best defence, 2nd place
      2021-22: 4th best attack, tied 1st defence Scudetto
      2022-23: 4th best attack, 6th best defence, 4/5th
      2023-24 (so far): 2nd best attack, 11th best defence, 3rd place.

  9. The article could be right to some extent, Pioli was never given a break and he was always criticized for mediocre players’ mistakes.
    However, we need to understand, that the club cannot afford to buy ready and top players at this time and we have to accept this fact and live with these mediocre. By the same token, Milan’s management needs to understand that Pioli is not that couch that can take mediocre names and turn them into stars, he is not cut out for this job. The management needs to understand if we keep buying cheap players and take our chance with them is not going to work with Pioli’s in place. Look at our potential players, Kalulu, Thiaw, CDK, Saelmaeker, Gabbia, Adli, Okafor, Chukwueze, etc. He is really uncapable of getting the best out of these players. He needs players with quality such as Dybala, Kvara, and Ibra to lead the team.
    In short, I dont think he is capable of leading this team any further and I believe his accomplishment came at the back others such as Maldini and Ibra.
    These are my two cents.

  10. The article could be right to some extent, Pioli was never given a break and he was always criticized for mediocre players’ mistakes.
    However, we need to understand, that the club cannot afford to buy ready and top players at this time and we have to accept this fact and live with these mediocre. By the same token, Milan’s management needs to understand that Pioli is not that couch that can take mediocre names and turn them into stars, he is not cut out for this job. The management needs to understand if we keep buying cheap players and take our chance with them is not going to work with Pioli’s in place. Look at our potential players, Kalulu, Thiaw, CDK, Saelmaeker, Gabbia, Adli, Okafor, Chukwueze, etc. He is really uncapable of getting the best out of these players. He needs players with quality such as Dybala, Kvara, and Ibra to lead the team.
    In short, I dont think he is capable of leading this team any further and I believe his accomplishment came at the back of others such as Maldini and Ibra.
    These are my two cents.

  11. I agree that Pioli deserves a lot more credit for what he actually have achieved with ACM. From 2019 to today ACM habe climbed a mountain.
    Just take a look at point average pr game, even when corrected for 2-3 point per game Pioli is one of the clubs most successful managers. Ever.

    However, every good thing comes to an end, and so does Piolis tenure at ACM. I honestly think the club need a breath of fresh air and new ideas. In other words, a new manager.

    But we all owe Pioli a big thank you

    1. 100%!

      An it is precisely this level objectivity that many (not all) Milan fans lack… We all want the next step for Milan, upgrade on the coach, better performances and upgrades in key areas.

      We just don’t blame Pioli for EVERY single thing that goes wrong at Milan. Pioli absolutely deserves credit for the work he has done with the resources available. And that’s the MAIN point of this discussion.

      1. Giving baldy credit and wanting him to go are not the same thing. One has nothing to do with the other. Or should people like me write, every single time, yeah he done a good job. 2 years ago…. and then rant why he should be fired….

  12. Most of the chaos and damage is caused by journalists, milan is under pressure first from the journalists and then some fans jump in, its easy to make money by writing negative articles, thank you Christian Montegan, we need the club to improve and we also need to be balanced in our analysis, thats the only way the improvement will come

  13. Well the toxicity certainly has been helped by this very site itself hasn’t it?
    I mean, you don’t need 3 Krunic articles per day do you during “that period” that generated and promoted vitriol amongst fans. Similarly, we’ve been egged on by “pro” and “anti” Pioli articles to generate clicks and reactions. It’s a bit of pot calling kettle black here.

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