Player Ratings: AC Milan 3-0 Monza – Reijnders pivotal; Simic shines

By Isak Möller -

AC Milan clinched three important points after a very good performance against Monza at San Siro. Several players did well and the youngster Jan-Carlo Simic scored on his debut. Below are the player ratings for the Rossoneri. 

Starting XI

Maignan (7): Comfortable with his distribution, as always, and made a great save on Colpani in the second half at 2-0. He read the shot perfectly and really showed his class there.

Tomori (6.5): Another good display from the Englishman, although he wasn’t forced to do anything spectacular. He did well to press high and constantly forced the Monza players into decisions. On one occasion, however, he let D’Ambrosio through too easily for a great chance.

Kjaer (7): Having just come back from injury, he looked really good as he won almost every single duel with his man. In the first half, he also made a crucial block to deny the Milan loanee Colombo what looked like a certain goal. Very encouraging in the centre of a back three.

Pobega (N/A): He got injured after 23 minutes and thus didn’t play enough to get a rating.

Florenzi (6.5): He had two great efforts in the first half and at least one should have been a goal, with the Monza goalkeeper making two great saves. In addition, he was very comfortable in what looked like a central midfield role.

Loftus-Cheek (6): Strong in the duels, as you would expect, and he had some moments when going forward. However, his control of the ball let him down tonight, as he squandered a few promising chances.

Reijnders (7.5 – MOTM): We said after the Newcastle game that he has come into his own and that showed today as well. It was a brave solo run to open the scoring and the pass for Giroud before the third goal was just stunning. In the first half, he also made a great interception tackle which proved he can get the defensive work done as well.

Hernandez (6.5): The Frenchman looked a lot more like the ‘old Theo’ today with some bursting runs forward and good defending on top of that. His end product could have been slightly better, but very good overall.

Pulisic (6): He technically got the assist for Reijnders’ first goal and he was quite lively in the first half, almost scoring the goal of the season with a great curler as well. However, he faded as the game went on and ultimately, it was just a decent performance.

Giroud (6): Let’s be honest here, his flicks and combinations were amazing at times, as seen especially on the third goal. However, he looked almost flustered when he got chances himself, which is never nice to see from a striker.

Leao (6.5): The little turn before Simic’s goal, and the following cross to the youngster, was very good and the Portuguese also had a few other good runs at the Monza defence. He can do more, though, but at least today he walked away with a great assist.


Simic (7): What a debut for the youngster, not only scoring a goal but also asserting himself in the defensive phase. He showed off with a neat run past three players at the end, and it’s clear that he has the confidence to play with the first team.

Bennacer (6): He did what was needed from him, helping set up the attack for the third goal, and looked solid on the ball.

Okafor (6.5): It was a great finish to kill the game and he almost had a goal before that as well. Hopefully, his injury is nothing serious as Milan could use him in form now.

Bartesaghi (6): He got beaten once or twice down the left flank but also had some good moments, making for a decent outing.

Chukwueze (N/A): He had a lovely pass for Giroud, but the latter somehow failed to score. We didn’t see enough of the Nigerian to give him a rating, though.

Tags AC Milan AC Milan Player Ratings Jan-Carlo Simic Monza Noah Okafor Simon Kjaer Tijjani Reijnders


  1. Simic is sensational. Real gem. Confident, great blocks, defensive and offensive play. Joy to watch.

    Pobega deserves the rating. He played very well before injury.

    But please someone can you explain why Olivier played the while match and Jovic on the bench? WTH?

    1. Seriously ,jovic needed some minutes ,why play Oli all tru the 90mins wen u have in form jovic ,pioli can kill players spirit and will sometimes

      1. Reijnders played a very intelligent game today, he did everything well. Kudos to him. Simic was great as well but not really tested defensively, he should get more minutes though. Great goal by Okafor, Giroud showing his high levels of intelligence with a superb pass following on from the one against Newcastle.

        We should beat Monza, we can’t judge this team against Monza, we should judge them and Pioli when they are up against it and need to raise their levels. Some very lazy play by Leao again too…so frustrating given how good we know he can be

  2. Finally a good performance!

    Pioli got it right today.

    Pobega looked excellent as part of the back 3 before he went off.
    Theo was back in beast mode.
    Tomori made a few mistakes but was very good
    Kjaer was a true leader, marshalling all those around him and helping the young guns

    Reijnders, excellent, if a little lucky with the goal

    RLC – a pass

    Florenzi played really well as wing back

    Leao is still rusty but got a good assist

    Giroud had some good touches but otherwise poor in front of goal

    Pulisic was good enough

    Okafor was a real bright point, what a huge shame to see him go off injured, he is a massive talent that we need to get integrated. He’s so effective

    SIMIC – What can you say but BRAVO. Every Milan fan enjoyed his debut. Scored, defended well and finished off with a lovely run out of defense. Quality!

    1. I don’t even need to post my impressions as you did it so right; you said what I would have said.

      Tipped hat to Simic, what a great start with the first team! Quality, indeed! He completed 26 out of 27 passes. Won tackles, defended well, he was simply brilliant at his young age, what a gem!

      Chuk showed once more that even if he doesn’t score, he helps the team with great passes. He has placed the ball in dangerous spots for the other forwards multiple times in the last few games, and is massively underrated. He deserves better ratings from all the newspapers and websites that keep criticizing him because he does lose the ball relatively often, but he also contributes massively at times and is improving more and more. I think he is not a bust and is contributing, and should get better as the season goes on.

      A shame, two more injuries. We need to fire the entire trainers department. When our guys are healthy they perform well. Game after game Inter has always the same core group of healthy players, and we keep getting everybody injured. Without the injuries we would have advanced in the Champions League and would be challenging for the Scudetto. People criticize Pioli but our biggest flaw is the huge number of muscle injuries.

      1. Cheers Luigi.

        Yeah the injury situation is crazy!
        We are just lucky to have had most 1st team players fit. They are getting over worked as a result.

        Having the experience of Kjaer is clearly so steadying for the younger guys. If we do bring in a new CB perhaps it should be an older player with experience and gravitas. We have quite a few young CB’s.
        Pellegrino should be back soon and in February we have Thiaw and Kalulu back, so in essence if we sign someone in January, it is literally to just play January matches.

        Tomori, Thiaw, Kalulu, Pellegrino, Simic, Gabbia seems like plenty of options for next season. As I said unless we can bring in a Kjaer 2.0

    2. Spot on.
      Good win finally, very much needed.
      Many positive signs, let’s hope we take it from here. The upcoming schedule is relatively easy, we need to take full advantage of it.

      P. S. The story with injuries is unreal. We had many injuries in the past years but not like this.

      1. Yes indeed, we must put a run of wins together when the fixtures favor us.
        I think most fans just want to see the team play with desire, continuity and consistency.
        We have some great talent both in the primavera and 1st team squads. Give them a chance and let’s build a great team that can challenge in CL next season

    3. I doubt that pioli is giving RLC a pass for that…if there were more midfielders available i think he would have taken him off at halftime. ive seen him locked in and effective in other games, so I don’t get what was happening, but it was hard to watch. He couldn’t move quickly enough to be an outlet for the back five and was consistently the last one back to defend, with pulisic covering for him frequently.

  3. Nice win.
    Early goal changes everything.
    Reijnders played his best game so far. Nice solo run on the goal and his fingerprints were all over the other 2 goals. With Bennacer back, every midfielder can go and play in their best role.
    Great debut by Simic. Besides the goal he was good in defense, if only someone gave him the opportunity couple weeks back.
    Old man Kjaer doesn’t play for 2 months and comes in and puts Colombo in his pocket. 3rd striker at best at Milan.
    Giroud was awful. Don’t know why Pioli played him all 90 minutes but Jovic better start the next game.
    2 more injuries. Hopefully, it’s not a long stoppage.
    Pobega was good while on the pitch in a LCB role.
    Okafor was very lively of the bench.
    Let’s hope Romagnoli and Lazio do Milan a favor and at least hold Inter to a draw.

    1. Reinjders fingerprints on all the goals …

      Yep, I didn’t really put that together until you pointed it out. I think he was 48/51 on passing too!

  4. I’m just glad Pioli didn’t read the comments from the armchair coaches where he should bench Reijnders because he looks “tired”. This match with one goal, one important tackle, and one key pass for the 3rd goal is a proof that Reijnders doesn’t look “tired” nor his performance drop because Pioli keeps playing him.

    Anyway. A well deserved win with great performances all around. We got a clean sheet and a record for Simic too.

    Unfortunate for Pobega and Okafor because both played well before they left the field with injury. Hopefully nothing serious with them.

    1. Being one of those who thinks he needs a rest I am now questioning myself.

      He was given a much more attacking assignment today and was a much more engaged player. Maybe its the role and not the energy level.

      1. I’d say the game was very open today, and our attack was generally fluid so I guess this is the type of situations where he can thrive ?
        But I admit I was caught wrong about him.

      2. I was another one who advocated for a break for him. Yes, I think we were wrong. He needs to play as attacking midfielder; he is better at that than as a defensive midfielder.

        1. I see both Reijnders and Bennacer as players who are better going forward.
          Buy a good DM and play those 2 either side and we have a very exciting midfield

  5. We had a horrible Napoli/Lecce period there in the 2nd half as usual but other than that another great performance. Let’s see what the Debbie Downers have to say 😆.

  6. Good win. I don’t want to make conclusions out of easy games but it’s a good win nevertheless.
    -Reijnders did really prove me wrong here lol, I still wanted him to rest though.
    -Okafor is still on roll, please tell me this injury is not too bad.
    -Happy for Simic for scoring his first goal, I hope he gets more minutes.
    -Please renew to Mike Maignan

    1. This wasn’t an easy game. Monza is a worthy mid-table team. They keep possession well and are dangerous in counters. They deserved at least a goal today. The game was made “easy” because we had an outstanding performance with multiple guys doing well.

      1. Not far from Frosinone which win led to misconclusions.
        Anyways it was a good performance, not gonna lie, but IMO good performance against teams outside of the top 6 or 7 shouldn’t be used too much as references, because in the end these are teams were supposedly very capable of beating, losing and drawing against them is our mistake.

  7. Well deserved goal by reijnders, he has been playing a lot. Okafor a real spark on the wings. Sucks he got injured. Great to see our youngster simic score. Hope he gets more time. Overall great game by all. Even baldie got thus right. Monza didn’t have a real chance. Let’s keep this kind of performance up.

  8. Great performance. So good to see Kjaer back in there. It’s amazing how much more solid the defense looks when he is in there. Always in the right spot. No coincidence another clean sheet.
    Florenzi has earned the starting RB spot over Calabria in my opinion. He has been better this season. He offers much more going forward and honestly I don’t think there is a big difference defensively.
    Good to see the youngsters doing well, but again with the injuries on this team! Okafor can’t play 30 minutes without getting injured.
    Malini’s Heir must be upset, these new signings just won’t stop scoring and helping the team win!

    1. Yes, Florenzi is generally better than Calabria. However the problem is that when he plays too often he gets injured. His knees are not in good form. He shows his age when he plays too many games in a row. But I do think that otherwise he is better than Calabria, especially, like you said, he is more effective when he helps the offense.

  9. Thanks god the boy shined , maybe they will quit idea of bringing in washed up trash players from other teams as Lenglet from Barcelona and give our youngsters a chance that they deserved. Simic was briliant today,without a single mistake just as we all expected except Pioli.

    1. Except Pioli? Pioli did play him today. Pioli has given numerous chances to the youngsters, this season, and people here keep saying that he doesn’t. It looks like you guys live in an alternate reality where Pioli doesn’t play the young guys, when many of them were given chances this season.

      1. Luigi you are making fool of urself , if don’t see the obvious things i don’t have time to explain it to you. I am not the guy that u can trigger that easy to explain to you things that everyone except u sees. Go troll somewhere else if u troling,if u are not troling than quit watching football.

        1. No, you are making a fool of yourself. You live in this deluded reality where Eletu is the starting CDM and Camarda is benching Giroud.

          The argument used to be “Pioli doesn’t play the new signings. They take too much time to adapt”. Now it’s “He’s overplaying Reinders and Musah”. You’re just unhappy people, and it’s hard to take y’all seriously.

        2. OK, I’m making a fool of myself, right? Let’s see. Pioli has utilized not one, not two, but four Primavera guys with the first team, this season. Camarda, Simic, Bartesaghi, and Chaka-Traorè. Please let me know what other Serie A manager has used as many youth academy players with their first team.

          In addition to this, he utilized two other young guys even when they didn’t seem so ready, namely Luka Romero and Pellegrino, and had Nava on bench. He used all summer signings multiple times, including the younger ones, like Musah who just turned 21.

          These are FACTS. So why is exactly that you believe it is so obvious that Pioli doesn’t use them???

          If you think that mentioning FACTS like these are the same as trolling, you need to seriously look up the definition of trolling.

          How old are you? You think you’re smart, right? You don’t have time to explain things to me and I should quit watching football? How juvenile…

          I am 100% certain that I’ve been watching football way longer than you have, or at least with more attention, because you seem to have missed these FACTS. Don’t you pay attention to the lineups of the games? Look back and you’ll find all the names that I’ve mentioned.

          Have a nice day.

      2. numerous ??? hahahah they all together got less than 90 minutes this season, he tried krunic on cb,tried theo on cb,tried pobega on cb,tried everything not to give a chance to the youngsters

  10. matches like this i can never be sure. Was Milan good or was Monza that poor. Im towards the latter. Gregorio tho… he was good

      1. looked pretty poor 2 me. 21 shoots 4 on target. And Milan players walked into their box again and again.. If we were to rate Monza players the cbs would get a 5 and that is being generous

        The only reason Monza had more possession is Milan was 2 goals up and we were waiting for counters

        1. Midtable Serie A teams are tough. So, when we dominate one of them, they are poor? It’s not that Monza is poor; we were too good today, very creative, vertical and dangerous. Just enjoy it. Forza MIlan.

  11. Finally some football from the lads, it was a good display although still too much space left in the midfield for opposition to build their offense. Kjaer is still a commander, Simić someone to nurture and play more. Sorry to see Pobega out so quickly as he also showed confidence in his play. All the lads did what was needed from them. Hope they build on this match and further improve.

  12. Super excited for Simic goal, it can only be good for his confidence. Hopefully it will make him settle quicker and take some risks going forward since he made a few ‘safe’ (back)passes coming into the game. We need these youngsters to develop balls and take these games headon. A couple of good tackles, looks promising…on the overall team performances I still feel we allow our opponents too much room to dictate terms. We need to be more imposing and ruthless in the way we approach games. Happy with the 3 points though.

  13. Was that a Serie A game or an Eredivisie match? The game was wide open. I think Monza wanted it that way in hopes of exposing our backline if a mistake were to occur and also tire out our attackers. Ultimately, the guys held strong given Monza bottled some fantastic chances.

    Mike did well as he usually does. He made some great saves and looked in command.

    The backline looked solid. Tomori, Theo, and Simic played well with each other and were very involved in all aspects of the match. The young lad got a goal and looked very comfortable in the role Pioli asked him to play. Theo, great player, too hunger for that goal. Too often I see him with horse blinders on looking for goal and not a teammate. Just relax you are an amazing player and your goals will come, please don’t force it we all know you are quality. Flo, that guy has been unrated the past few matches. He does a decent job at defending and has a rocket of a leg just, I want one to crack threw the back of the net.

    The midfielders looked connected tonight for the first time in a long time. Reijnders played a great match, maybe that’s why it looked like a dutch league match to me but nonetheless bravo mate. RLC strong but no touch today. Going forward he left a lot of plays unplayed.

    The front line looked active tonight in the sense that they were involved in both defending and going forward, even Leao looked good defending. Too often he fails to tract back but I am starting to think it is to conserve energy for latter in the game. He got a great assist and looked more like a team player tonight. Pulisic had a great ball in to Giroud shame he could not put it the net. That shot off the woodwork was a real banger a bit unlucky not to score. As the game progress he seemed to tired but did a great job defending which isn’t exactly what you want to praise a winger for but the work was necessary and helped us win. Giroud looked tired as the game wore on and perhaps that’s why he missed the chances he had but he still showed his ability to link up with teammates.

    The subs looked well timed and productive. Bennacer came on and looked like the boss of the midfield, can’t wait till he is fully fit and controlling play for us again. Okafor came on and had a good shot blocked and a great goal. Pity he got hurt because we really need those extra wingers to play because Leao and Pulisic have had their own fatigue injuries and being able to take them off in the 70th minute would be ideal to keep everyone healthy and productive. Chukwueze is starting to come along. I liked that he looked for teammates tonight. Keep it up and you will see more time on the pitch.

    And the manger Pioli, you did a great job tonight. When Pobega got hurt you brought in Simic, nice move for showing confidence in the young player. It was also great to see that the team didn’t fall apart after the injury which we have seen in the past. You made more correct subs later with Benny and Okafor because they both shined. You even kept that one sub just in case you needed it. You could have put Chukwueze on for Pulisic earlier and no one would have second guested you but you didn’t and when Okafor went down you had that sub left and used it allowing Pulisic to go on the LW and Chukwueze on the LW keeping everyone in positions they excel at.

    Great showing but deep down I know Monza blew some chances that could have changed the game but credit Milan for not allowing that to happen and the fans for providing an excellent atmosphere they really deserve some credit for packing the stadium and providing our players with the encouragement and the players feed off their energy.

  14. So… Kjaer was out for over a month, gets back into the starting eleven and plays a PERFECT match. Not a single mistake. Yet this website’s world-class football analysts on the comment section has already deemed him pretty much dead.

    Always brings a smile on my face to see a performance like that after people here mocking and ridiculing classy players such as Kjaer.

    1. This is true. So many people on here just look at someone’s age and judge rather than performance. Milan had more clean sheets in the 17 games Kjaer started last season than in the 30 games he didn’t start. Kjaer and Tomori is the best CB combination on this team. His positioning and reading of the game perfectly compliments Tomori’s aggression and pace. Kjaer with Thiaw doesn’t really work tho because not enough pace.

    2. Kjaer was one of my favourites at some point, and he is definetly one of our best defenders. The problem though is that he is rarely available and it seems to be getting worse and worse.

  15. Meanwhile, Motta orchestrating another Bologna win to bring them up to 4th place alone, 4 points behind “Il Genio” Pioli. Lol.

  16. The biggest priority this summer HAS to be our injury crisis… Seeing Okafor limp off after just returning has to be the nail in the coffin. What is going on at Milanello?!

    American ownership needs to bring in American specialists and physios to resolve this. 29 injuries and we aren’t even midway in yet… TWENTY NINE!

    That’s Madness

    1. Why bring in American specialists? Do they have the best doctors for footballing conditioning and injury treatment? If so, then yeah bring them in.

      1. Some are also a joke as you’d find everywhere but some are actually quite very good. It really boils down to their reputation. My thing is why dont they trace Osti’s record of injuries and make the determination l. He did a bad job at Inter imo when Pioli was there and now he’s followed him here

  17. One thing struck me while watching this game. Italy is filled with gorgeous women. That’s totally different from following Chelsea and Pulisic in the Premier League.

    1. Hear, hear!
      It’s from centuries of the Roman Legions bringing slaves back from all their conquered territories back home.
      The ugly ones probably were sent to hard labor in the fields.
      The pretty ones got the job of making more Italians.
      Same thing happened with Icelandic women originating from Viking raids all over Europe

  18. We really should have won this game 4 or 5-0, shouldn’t we?. Sloppy by Giroud on the Chuku pass. These things can make or break a player’s confidence…taking about Chuk here when he sees he has one less assist than he should have. I’m also glad we defended and counter. I knew Monza would have dominated possession as per pre game, but I’m also happy that we played to our strengths. Defend in a wide back 5 and counter. Also our early tactics rocked them for a bit with Theo finally being able to link with Leao better (he’s a whole different attacker when he plays with Theo). My problem is that Pioli will use the same exact tactic the next game and we’ll get found out (just like when we played invested full backs the first set of games and coaches realize what we were doing). Seems Pioli gotta constantly invent things rather than rely on a system of play. Anyways great 3 points against a very tough opponent. This to me is a better win than the last time out.
    I didn’t fancy Pobega as a CB. Getting injured early might have been a blessing in disguise as Monza didn’t really focus on his side when he was on the field. There’s nothing about that choice that I liked.
    As for reijnders good game, great start but faded over time. I don’t agree with folks here that he shouldn’t have been rested. The sitting back game we played as well as playing him in his proper position helped him play a good game but really he should have been rested as he started darn near all our games now.
    Decentt game overall. Great to see Kjaer back and playing better than he did at the start of the seat(again the tactics helped him.out here too).
    Finally our physios and physical preparation team or whoever is responsible for our teams physical shape needs an overhaul. The number of injuries now are comical.

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