Player Ratings: Milan 2-0 Genoa – Trio shines the most; one clear flop

By Isak Möller -

AC Milan managed to bounce back from two disappointing 0-0 defeats with a win against Genoa this evening. And they didn’t just win 1-0, but rather 2-0. Down below are the player ratings of the Rossoneri. 

Starting XI

Maignan (7): He didn’t have a whole lot to do this evening in terms of saving but was always at hand for the defenders in the build-up phase. His importance there is undeniable. He did, however, make a stunning reflex save late into added time, thus the high rating.

Kalulu (7): He was forced to move out to the right this evening as Calabria picked up an injury. It’s a position the Frenchman is used to though, having joined the club as a right-back. And he got the lovely assist for the first goal, showing his qualities along with the defensive ones.

Gabbia (6.5): It was a shame that he came off injured because he did really well prior to that. He’s not as comfortable on the ball as the others but he makes up for that. He had the courage to send some long balls this evening that were good and he also had a hand in the first goal.

Tomori (6.5): A very solid display from the Englishman who lead the defence out there this evening. A few nice interceptions and some nice skills were shown off as well, making for a good evening.

Hernandez (6.5): It would be harsh to give him anything else as his runs up and down the left-hand flank worked today. Not as in they generated goals, but he held up his end of the bargain with them, he can’t take the blame for his teammates resulting faults.

Bennacer (6): It was another solid display from the Algerian and it’s clear that just his presence does a lot for the team. Tonight, however, he sat back a bit more and wasn’t as involved in the attacking phase, which he usually does so well.

Tonali (6.5): A true warrior on the pitch out there tonight and it’s clear that he cares so much about the club. If it wasn’t for a few lost balls (when he shouldn’t have lost them), the rating for sure would have been higher.

Saelemaekers (4): It’s just not happening for the Belgian winger and that was painfully obvious tonight. The occasion on which he slipped before pulling the trigger really painted the picture perfectly.

Kessie (6): Nothing spectacular, nothing outrageous. But he continues to do his job for the team and you have to give him credit for that.

Milan vs Genoa

Leao (7): He scored the crucial opener with a great finish and he clearly had an advantage on his opponent tonight. It could have been more but we all know what happens to Leao sometimes, he gets very close.

Giroud (6): He worked hard for the team, as usual, but he only really had one good opportunity to score. He was forced to acrobatically shoot with his right foot, which didn’t help.


Rebic (6): He came on and added energy to the Milan team and managed to get an assist, sort of. His rating would’ve been higher if it wasn’t for that final decision that he continues to struggle with.

Messias (6): He got on the scoresheet and that could perhaps be an important confidence boost for him. It was a scrappy goal, no doubt about it, but well taken nevertheless.

Krunic (6): He was forced to play as the right-back and he did the task well, under the circumstances. A few nice moves and no mistakes at the back.

Ballo-Toure (N/A): A bright performance off the bench but he didn’t play enough.

Diaz (N/A): He didn’t play enough.

Tags AC Milan Mike Maignan Pierre Kalulu Rafael Leao


  1. WARNING !!!!
    Don’t watch the recent Milan games if you can’t hold on to your seat, and take the amateurism and sheer cluelessness.

    Once again, Milan was dreadful to watch. We still haven’t learnt our lesson. I’ve blamed M&M this past few weeks, and their recent mistakes are going to live with us till the end of the season; but today I have to go hard on Pioli.

    How is he so relaxed on the sidelines watching the players fumble the ball time and time again just because you have a “1-0” lead.

    You waste 15 mins of precious Second half time leaving Salemakeers on the pitch. You are trying the same formation and gameplan that clearly doesn’t yield much every gameday, expecting a different result; well we got a different result today, but doesn’t make it the best strategy. We all know we can’t win the league playing this way, at least change the formation, act, do something to show that you care about trying to fight for the scudetto. Don’t just stand there and act like you and the team are doing the best you can be doing.

    What the f**k!!! It is painful to not see improvement after 5 to 6 games of the same pattern. Does it mean they aren’t learning anything from those games?

    At this rate, we might need to watch the Coppa game with just one eye. Hold on to your hats boys….. Lol.

    Kessie in #10 was always going to be a disaster in terms of creativity. The attack was stifled from start to finish. Giroud can score a lot more if he had quality deliveries from a creative AM. I have to call Pioli out on this, At this point in the season why was Kessie given the Captain Armband?????
    It’s bad enough that the dude isn’t going to be with Milan next season, why do you reward him with the armband as he makes his way out? How about the players who are sticking with us through till 2026? Is Bennacer not fit enough to have it? or Theo, Tomori? even Tonali? He needs to make a statement.

    Pioli needs to find a wininng formation where the current players at his disposal can thrive.

    If any assist was ever going to come from the RW, it was definitely not going to come from Salemakeers, that’s how bad our RW is at the moment. Easy tap in for Messias on the second goal, good reflex on the rebound.

    Bennacer was arguably the best midfielder on the pitch. Playing as though the ball was glued to his feet.

    Tonali was a bit off today, lost possession a couple of times that slowed the pace of the attack.

    Kalulu is probable the revelation of our season. He has hardly put a feet wrong since he picked up form from his last mistake early in the season. In general, the defense was solid.

    Diaz??? Nothing to see there, same story. That’s a handicap for us in any game.

    Bottom-line is, we can’t keep waiting for those 1 in 100 chances to produce anything that looks like a scoring opportunity.

    Congratulations to the team for the win though. A Win is a Win. Have a great weekend guys.

    1. You spoke my mind.
      Thank you.
      I just do hope Pioli or Milan get to see it.
      Can’t Maldini at least advise Pioli?
      Can he even give Rebic a chance to start d game.
      Messaias in his worst form,is still better than salemaker.
      I think Castilejo should be activated,he is 100 times better than Sale.
      We seriously need a formation change.

    2. I don’t know if formation change is the right move this late in the season but I’ve always been curious what playing Florenzi and Rebic as wings and Leao as a second striker in a 4-4-2 would be like.

      1. Pioli has been phenomenal, but it’s still not an excuse to use the same strategy when it almost never guarantees a win.

    3. kessie is given the armband because the coach & the management needs him to play with 100% energy, they do not have his replacement now, that’s why he is given the armband bt after the end of the season he is going and they must have his replacement, I prefer theo hernandez as next milan captain.

    4. Everything that you have said is correct BUT …

      We have to understand that this team has been overachieving for the past two years.

      Tactics can only take you this far. It doesn’t matter if it’s Pioli, Mourinho, Guardiola or Sir Alex. You need quality players to win trophies.

      And to put it simply, the players that we have are simply NOT GOOD enough.

      Also, the fact that we are challenging for the scudetto this year is a magical picture. We haven’t improved much since last year, or have more points. We’re only first because Inter is significantly worse than last year.

      So, let’s continue supporting the team and hope for a miracle to happen. #19 !

    5. always enjoy your perspective and had some additional comments but lost them just now to cyberspace error however will try to recall, sum up. Yes Kalulu, book end of Theo (il Gazzella),(the French Connection) Pioli has let him run free as Dechamps has with French Nat’l. team (check out his stats). With Theo advancing centrally often marked by two this is opening up Leao , Saele./Junior , Giroud/Rebic. Like Saele. but just not ready for “show time” Chokes twice and once last game, slip tonight I will give him. Tonight we won do in part we departed from the usual toss in a “header” for Giroud. Both our goals scored with our feet. Pioli maybe……maybe is starting to get why the call it “foot” ball. With his back now against the wall and confidence in his c’ backs he is realizing playing to win is better than playing not to lose. Tonali tired, playing end to end with Kalulu and Theo advancing . His role seems to be pushing counter attack to sidelines until defense can recover. Bennacer outstanding . Leao has great talent but mopes around after losing the ball…..he is a 10 when he is 1 on 1 and a 3 the rest of the time, average 6.5 . Watched him lose the ball and while he is moping at the byline ,like lightning here comes Bennacer to win it back. Solid game by Giroud, but unlike Ibra not as talented with his feet. Rebic replaced him but congested Leao’s area ,needed to be more central , still you can see how strong he is with back to goal, he should be tried at the 10, especially as he is good with both feet. Played there at Eintracht .Time for us to “bully: the ball in the net,enough with the “finesse” headers. Tomori, nothing flashy just solid as a rock , and tutoring Gabbia, was not in favor of acquiring Botman but now thinking a blessing in disguise, having Kalulu at RB. and Maignan…..Donnarumma who ? , “Main” Mike, main reason we are here. Kessie could be dogging it, playing to not injure himself, played tonight like last years form. This may not be Pioli’s design tonight but maybe enlightened him to let the “players play” to what they are good at rather than force them to play “his” game. But as you say a win is a win. Forza Interesting game Tues……..It will wear us out for our next match against Lazio, BUT fortunately we play Inter who is in the same situation……and they face Roma……. A win against Inter now becomes a double edged sword, we advance in the Coppa and take some wind and hope from Inter. And if we win unfortunately we play for Coppa before end of Serie A season. Forza Rossoneri !!!

  2. I worship the floor Kalulu has stepped on. Great footballer with such a levelled head on such young shoulders. Kalulu gives so much confidence alongside Tomori. Their combined pace, power and defensive acumen is evident in the string of clean sheets we’ve kept.

    If only Kjaer were fit, we’d never need Botman for now and all resources would be funneled into fixing our CAM and RW. It’s a crying shame to watch our team fritter away attacking opportunities.

    Samu and Salaemaekers need to go like yesterday. Messias can stay and deputize for a proper RW as he at least has an eye for goal.

    1. Maybe try Rebic/Leao at RW. Bennacer at CAM might be a good option. Without Ibra and Kjaer, we don’t have any leader on the pitch and by handing Kessie the armband , I am not sure what is the message conveyed to remainder of the team.

  3. they didn’t improve at all comparing them with last matches vs bologna and torino,it was just about weaker oponent and most probably the worst team in league,i dont know what they doing on training every week but they don’t improve anything

  4. In what world Gabbia and Tomori have the same grade. Gabbia kick every ball that came to him in the stands, even when he wasn’t under pressure.
    Out of all 3 midfielders Tonali was the worst , here he gets graded higher than both Kessie and Bennacer.
    Leao outside of scoring the goal was awful, AGAIN. And before people say he was double teamed, he wasn’t. He has been owned by defenders in man to man

    1. Which match wer you watching? Leao played well today, won all his one on one dribbles and had many crosses Inside the box…..gabbia and tonali underperform though

  5. Salemeakers was really my biggest worry tonight, he misses every ball! Tonali wasn’t in the game. And I still don’t understand how the management or Pioli would hand Kessie the captain band, it’s disrespectful to the club!! Fuck kessie!!

  6. As usual the commenters in here a seriously ungrateful especially that keo kid, even after Milan won the match again and scored not just one but two goals + a clean sheet 🤦‍♂️

    I bet even if Milan won Scudetto or Champions League, these commenters will complaints day and night and mocking the players / coach. What a disgusting display. You kida doesn’t deserve Milan!

    1. Couldn’t agree more. I am not happy with the performance but the team churned out a win so I am satisfied. I have become saddened by the fairweather ‘fans’ of this great club. I have never seen such vitriol for a team they claim to support. I just hope they are a vocal minority and do not represent the larger majority.

      1. If you read my comments, you’d see that I give credit where it is due. I also call out the rubbish I see on display, and that doesn’t qualify as “Fairweather”, in case you don’t know what the word means. We all want the same thing, so take a chill pill.

    2. Sorry Grandpa… Not everyone warms up to a win after a dreadful display. If you can’t take constructive criticism., stop reading my comments.

      I guess you must be as old as the club itself, you might just get a heart attack reading my comments…… Lol

      1. Here’s the thing kid:


        Sure Milan could plays better. ANYONE could see that. But kids like you acting like you are a certified coach / professional players and wrote a TL;DR bullcrap as if you can do better is just disgusting 🤮

        If you’re really a Milan fan then act like a fan: respect the players and coach who work hards for this win. Period!

        1. Hey Grandpa, watch it there cause you might hurt yourself…… Lol. Feel free not to jump on my comments, cause I am going to keep pointing out everything I see on display with my dear club Milan; be it with the team or the management. You just need to learn to take criticism. DON’T BE SHEEP!!!

          1. Kid, you’re the one who jumped on my comment and i will keep pointing out smartass kids like you who only plays video games: STOP ACTING LIKE YOU KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT FOOTBALL!!!

  7. Benecer should get at least a 7.
    Krinic was fantastic as a sub.
    The worst is stupid fanatic fan that because they play playstation they know about soccer.
    We need more fresh legs to star, like Rebic CF & Maldini AM. We need them to deliver too.

    1. Agreed

      I had enough of these fanatics fans who acts like they knew everything when they only play video games 🤮

  8. I’m happy for the victory but surely you guys can see how crap we play as an attacking unit. I agree with Keo. Our attack is pathetic and the players just do not have enough quality about them to make a difference. There is little to get excited about over a struggling 2-0 victory over a very poor Genoa side. We never look comfortable. The players and the coach need to take a long hard look at themselves in terms of there performance in order to win this title. We have been poor on so many occasions this season, it’s hard to believe we are top of the league. I just hope after a tough run of games coming up we can bring the scudetto home 🏆

  9. It is miracle we still top 1 serie A with saelemaker as starter RW ( 2200 minute play with just 2 goal) . Kessie give saele good passing and saele free that position ( no defender disturb him) but still his shooting in close range are just aiming the bird in sky, after that i see how disappointed face his team mate . You cannot just throw big chance like that if this is CL knock out match. I suggest we sell this saele next summer to highest bid, keeping him in squad make the squad weaken , he better become capital gain

  10. Solid win, not spectacular as most would want but a win is a win. Funny how nobody is calling Leao “lazy” today lol. Wonder why that is? Yes it wasn’t the best display of football but what more can we expect? Aside from Leao we have NO other players that can create. We have no ACM and have to resort to using Kessie in that role; our RW is non-existent and Giroud is a classic #9 – doesn’t drop back and help build up the play. So it’s not surprising at all. Get us a playmaker and a real RW and watch the goals fly – esp Leao. He will score 25 goals for fun he is that talented. imagine him on PSG – w Neymar, Messi, Veratti setting him up?? Crazy. This is what we have so let’s support the team till the end. No one predicted we would still be first place with 5 games left. And for anyone who suggests we change formation with 5 games to gon- that will never happen. Pioli is doing a masterful job w the players (or lack thereof) he has so must have faith in him till the end. No matter what we exceeded expectations and should be proud finishing 1st or not IMO

    1. I share your sentiment concerning how far the team have come with the players available, and it is truly remarkable; but we all said the same thing last season as well, and here we are barely keeping hold of #1 position. We can easily be making the same statement by this time next year after a whole season of experiments chasing top 4 spots.

      Great win for the lads though. We’ll take it.

      When do we do more than this??? When do we stop leading the pack all season only to fall out of the race in the last few games??

      Pioli is doing his best with the only formation he knows, with the players he has been giving. Let the management and the technical crew to their part to inject quality.

      1. KEO or whatever your name is, please shut your mouth and pocket it, your childish remarks are really disturbing, this is not playstation but real life…..this team is over achieving, Milan struggled to go to Europa league before but now we aim for scudetto and you have the guts to asked, when it will stop….it will stop when you start speaking from your head and not your anus

        1. You can haul insults all day long, but I will ask whatever question I want about how the team I support plays, and how the club is run.

          You definitely have nothing to say other than insults, that in itself makes you immature. You have the mind of an unachiever, you need to think bigger.

      2. I agree we need more quality. That should have happened in Janaury and we should have purchased Vlahovic IMO – we’d have the Scudetto in the bag – even without a ACM and RW lol. Now our fate is in Inter’s hands…But it is what it is now. Let hope and pray and see if Elliott are true to their word and spend 100M on new players and extend Leao and Bennacer and give a new improved deal for Tonali. Maybe this new ownership group (investcorp) comes in and buys and changes everything. Should be an interesting few months….Forza Milan!

      3. KEO you obviously spend a loy of time in commenting the player ratings, which means that in a way you care about the team like any other fan. What you fail to see is the progress that the team makes. We’re now on top of Serie A and if it wasn’t for the referee mistake in the Spezia game we would be clear on top. The team is also less Ibra-bound to get results. The current squad is not a Serie A championship team, but the fact that they’re in first place is because Pioli has made them over achieve. You expect everything to go perfect, but that’s not real life. I’ve read many fans complaining that if you can’t beat Torino, you can’t be champion. Well Inter has played 1-1 against Torino just a few weeks back. I also saw their dreadful game against Venezia, so they have those games too. Milan has been good against the top teams this season, so if they continue doing that, then we don’t have to worry about a CL spot this year. Last year we had to fight for it until the last game. Try to see the positives and support the team plz. The management has done a great job given the fact they were still restricted by UEFA because of FFP, while Inter wasn’t and still has the same amount of points while spending big and slowly going bankrupt

        1. We are all proud of the progress we have made as a team. It’s honestly a miracle we are where we are at the moment. The management made some wise decisions when they took over no doubt about it, kudos to them. That being said, the decision to not secure the #10 position, and also signing injured players like Bakayoko, Messias, and even Florenzi, with the uncertainty of whether they would provide the much needed depth for the season, pretty much casts a shadow on the wonderful job they did in the previous window. And this has definitely come to haunt us.

          Having the foresight of securing young players for the future is a welcome idea, and that’s why I can’t really fault them on Lazectic.

          We can blame referee decisions all day and all week, but if we also played better in games we drew, like the ones where Bakayoko gave the balls away carelessly , and even the more recent ones where we our players found it more comfortable to lob the ball to Giroud instead of playing actual football, one can argue that we could also be clear on top .

          Injuries also haven’t help us as well, but the same can be said with the other 19 teams.

          We just need to do better, and I think I speak for most fans when I say that. Pioli is doing great with what he has at his disposal, but we could also use some dynamism in our tactics. The management also needs to be more intentional in the Transfer market as well.

          That has been my take on the season thus far.

          1. That’s a much better assessment of the situation.
            You need to keep seeing always the big picture: where we were and where we are. And most importantly, considering the available means. Building a winning team from scratch in 3 years without really spending AND reducing vastly the salaries (all this is exactly what happened) is a mission impossible. Yet M&M and Pioli almost did it. Hence our reaction to your harsh criticism.
            Do you think for example that M&M could get Vlahovic but instead chose Giroud? Do you think that we could have Chiesa but instead we chose Saelemaekers or Messias? Do you think that Pioli would still play them if he had the first in the team?
            It’s the sad reality. Management gave them clear scope – and winning was not part of it. They miraculously managed to almost do it.
            For this reason, and despite the bitterness that follows the recent performances and the potential loss of the title, we cannot be harsh – in my view.

  11. Milan need to fix their transfer windows. Maldini-Massara have a great signing for goalkeeper and defender, pure masterclass. But in the other hand, attacking department is very awful. Why we sign Lazetic if he only become 4th striker. We push Rebic to be 3th striker, but we don’t have backup for Leao. Playing Ballo-Toure as LW and Krunic as RB is a clear signal that we need to improve squad-depth

  12. Don’t get me wrong, I like Tonali; but these people doing these ratings week after week just love him too much and Bennacer gets a rating that is too low every time. Bennacer does SO MUCH MORE than Tonali. His dribbling, his passing accuracy, his tackles. Kessie was better than Tonali today too. Bennacer deserves a 7.5 minimum, maybe 8.

    Saelemakers should NEVER PLAY AGAIN. Seriously. he’s just terrible. I’m sure he’s a nice kid and the teammates like him, but he’s terrible. Rebic should start at RW and that’s it. Even Messias who isn’t good, is better than Saele. At least if he shoots he can get it at or near the goal frame.

    Pioli — some criticize, some support. Overall, I have to support him because if you look at Inter and Napoli’s squads, they’re deeper and more talented but we are right there with him so you must give him credit. BUT, I just don’t understand why Rebic isn’t playing more and why Saele EVER is on the field. At least he sat Diaz today. Kessie isn’t at his best at the 10, but he’s still FAR FAR better than Diaz there. He can dribble and not fall down right away like Diaz and he completes passes.

    Lastly for me… Kalulu… what can you say? He’s incredible. A revelation. LOVE him.

    1. Rebic got minor injury at midweek and his not fully recovered from his previous injury. That’s why Pioli doesn’t want to starter him or he will get injured again.

      On the other hand, Saele is fit and he deserves a second chance. Yes he made mistakes but he’s still young at 22. If the boy didn’t play then how he gonna grow up and learn his lesson?

    2. Tonali is going to be a magnificent player , give him a break. If more of the players had his work ethic there would be a big difference! As for Salaemakers, he is dreadful and should not be near the shirt, nor Diaz (not Castillejo for that matter). Kessie treading water until he leaves and no strike force – definitely overachieving. Let’s hope the suggested takeover happens as Maldini seems to have an eye for a deal.

  13. i will play hernandez just like bale from lb to rw, neither play saelemaker.. play hernandez as inverted winger

  14. Is Saele completely useless? Has anyone observed Saele playing through the middle? T think the coach should try the guy as a central midfielder. The dude surely knows how to hold and pass the ball.

  15. Everytime kessie plays well, you try to dim it because he’s leaving, ask yourself if tonali played better than kessie yesterday before you give such ratings, you’re always the one fueling the bad atmosphere around him, doesn’t make sense, he’s still our player, support him till the end, doesn’t make sense to be looking at him like a mercenary, rating him less and abusing him because he’s leaving and still abusing castilejo for staying, get your priorities right please, ever since we’ve started this fake rating, his game has dropped, we don’t even get penalties again, killing his moral everytime, well he’s an African warrior nothing you’ll say would dim him, the world has always been against us

  16. All theses aren’t the players fault. It’s the club for not buying replacements, tonali wasn’t just off today, even theo it’s been for about 4 or 5 games, don’t blame kessie and leave em, that’s bias, kessie is the only one trusted to play as a 10 and the fact that we’re putting a dm there is the team’s fault not his fault, if he’s playing badly there, pioli can try bennacer or tonali and we’ll see, diaz isn’t even a 10, he’s a winger, better we get replacements, look at our fucking benches during matches 😭

  17. Not a convincing game but a win is still a win, and we should give credits to the team. About the formation and player selection, I’ll have my faith on Pioli. Surely, he had considered many things for the tactics, monitored the players before the match and he knew the players much better than us. With some key players injured, It’s an immense pressure to be at the top of the league and I hope they can hold on until the end.

  18. Milan is less creative and therefore predictable with Giroud. It is good to see that Rabic is gaining his form back. A combination of Diaz and Rabic will allow for creativity in our attacking phase.
    As regards the right wing of Milan, Salaemaker should be out of it except when we need to defend after leading.
    The captaincy I believe should be given to the right person in the team ranking, Absolutely, Kassie is the right person. It is a respect he deserve even as he show commitment at his last days in red and black jersy.

    Two things about Poili, why did he wait so long to remove Saleamakers after flopping? Second, why did he risk Krunic at a right back when Ballo Traore can play that position and then Krunic comes in for the tired Leo.

    For the Derby, I will love to see Diaz and Rabic start, while Kassie and Bennacer play defensive mid field. at the flanges, Loe and Messias.

    We cannot keep playing as a predictable team at this time, a slip in point could cause the team the scudetto.

  19. If you see the last 5 games, Kalulu has been the standout performer.
    1. No goals conceded
    2. 1 goal
    3. 1 assist.

    Nobody has had more goals or assists than Kalulu and this is not sign for a team fighting for Scudetto.

    At this point, we are clear that unless Inter, with an easier fixture, drop points Milan have no chance of winning.

  20. I can’t believe someone commented that Leao barely lost a dribble! in first 5 minutes he lost possession twice, at 15:30 mark again overdribbled and tried to go thru 2 defenders instead of passing and lost the ball, 20 min mark lost the ball again, 24:15 lost possession again and announcer even commented that Leao is trying to do too much and “lost possession at least 4 times”

  21. Saelemaekers needs to hear emimen’s lose yourself, not afraid, guts over fear or kings never die before everymatch and mumbling it every seconds hes on the pitch

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