Player Ratings: Salzburg 1-1 AC Milan – Unexpected hero; positive debut

By Isak Möller -

AC Milan kicked off their Champions League campaign with a 1-1 draw away at Salzburg. There were quite a lot of average individual performances and down below are the player ratings for the Rossoneri. 

Starting XI

Maignan (6): He couldn’t really do anything about the goal and he was solid with his feet throughout the game, as well as in the aerial duels. He made a couple of good saves as well.

Calabria (5.5): He was subbed off by Pioli early in the second half (presumably because of the yellow card), but the captain also struggled a bit especially with keeping control of the ball. Dest looked a lot more comfortable when he came on.

Kalulu (5.5): He recovered and actually played a decent game at the (as we are used to seeing him) but the error on Salzburg’s goal was fatal.

Tomori (6): He was carded quite early on but managed to stay calm afterwards and did well in what was a tough game for both centre-backs.

Hernandez (6.5): The usual Theo this evening with a lot of defensive strength and attacking power. His energy level clearly decreased towards the end, though, which was to be expected given the tight schedule.

Bennacer (6.5): He controlled the pace of the game well and was crucial in the build-up for Milan’s equaliser. He probably would have gotten a higher rating if it hadn’t been for the slight mistake before Salzburg’s goal.

Tonali (6.5): Another very good display, without looking spectacular all the time, as he won many duels and wasn’t afraid to drive with the ball. Clearly a very important player for Milan.

Saelemaekers (7 – MOTM): Credit where credit is due, he was the best player for Milan this evening. Not only did he score the crucial equaliser with a powerful finish, but he also played well throughout the game. He often turned quickly and moved around a lot, causing a headache for the opponent.

De Ketelaere (5.5): He had a nice flick just before Milan’s goal but ultimately didn’t have an impact on the game really. He went missing a lot and also had more than one sloppy touch.

Leao (6): It was a great assist for Saelemaekers and he certainly had his moments throughout the game. However, at times, it felt like he was trying a bit too much to be the hero.

Giroud (5.5): He wasn’t really that involved in Milan’s play and part of that was because the Rossoneri struggled to create chances.


Origi (5.5): His lack of control tonight hurt him a lot and it was quite frustrating to see his display. But there’s potential to do well, no doubt.

Dest (6): A very positive debut for the American as he not only was calm on the ball, but also showed off some defensive as well as attacking skills.

Pobega (6): He added strength to the midfield and aside from a few lost duels, he was very solid and also tried to create chances in attack.

Diaz (5.5): It was a rough start for him but he slightly improved, involved in a couple of good chances towards the end.

Messias (5): Really poor from him unfortunately, with several touches that left us wondering about what he meant to do.

Tags AC Milan Champions League Saelemaekers Salzburg


        1. He played 81 mins in total over 4 games so far. The guy was injured and getting into his stride. I would much rather trust Klopp and his assessment that he is a good player than someone judging hum after 81 mins watched in TV and expecting him to have done what score 6 goals and assist 3 so far?

          1. He’s such a good player that they let him leave for free. Let’s face it, he has been absolutely worthless for us. It was sad to watch against Salzburg.

          2. Klopp let him leave. Obviously he wasn’t that impressed. Origi will be average. He will do what he has always done, score around 6 goals, maybe more if were luck6, and probably a few big ones. Everybody knew this. Why didn’t we go for a real striker or at least also get Belotti on a free for depth… nobody knows..

    1. Agreed, he’s not what I thought he was. It’s no wonder that Liverpool never took him seriously, he doesn’t seem to take the game seriously. He just wants the ball so he can flail at goal from wherever he receives the ball. It’s embarrassing.

  1. How does Pobega get a 6!?!?!?!?!?

    He made a very clumsy terrible tackle attempt right after coming onto the pitch (lucky he didn’t get a yellow) and giving Salzburg a free kick in a dangerous area.

    He took two terrible shots — the second of which was from WAY too far out while Leao was WIDE OPEN on the left and Leao was angry after his terrible shot went nowhere near the goal and out for a goal kick.

    Later he committed another foul that absolutely should’ve been a yellow card.

    All of Pioli’s substitutions were good/smart other than Bennacer should’ve stayed on the field. He’s been our best player all year and he shouldn’t be subbed out unless he’s got a yellow card or banged up.

    1. Game management will be key this year playing every 3/4 days with internationals crowbarred in and a World Cup as well. Pioli and his team will be working the numbers and squad rotation a bit more thoroughly than you mate. We’ve got some depth this year and that allows us to manage the season or shall we do our bollocks now and fizzle out in February and fall off the pace in the league and crash out of the UCL. This is a good away point. Chill out!

      1. Yeah I was on the we have more depth than last year however from what I’ve seen the midfield is lacking. Tonali and Bennacer were clearly tired and that effected their play. Pobega is trash I mean pure rubbish (I.e. worse than Baka). Krunic and Kessie’s absence is being felt. Don’t get me wrong I still think it’s a better team than last year but this winter Milan will need a legit midfielder to compliment Bennacer, Tonali and Krunic.

      2. I agree it’s a good away point. I didn’t say it wasn’t in this post, did I? In fact I post lower down that it is a good away point.

        I also know Pioli must do proper man management (there was nothing in my message saying he shouldn’t?)… this year, more than any before with World Cup making the calendar so crowded, Pioli must use all 5 subs and do rotations of players so everyone can get some rest. But, to me, Pobega hasn’t looked good yet while Adli has; so I’m just wondering why we’re seeing him and not Adli. Of course I trust Pioli — he’s more of an expert than I am; but that’s just my view on Pobega.

        Mainly w/ this post, I was simply disagreeing with Pobega’s rating as a 6 when he was terrible today. You did watch him play today, right?

        1. Sorry my message wasn’t directly aimed at you was just scrolling down and see so much nonsense that I picked a post and replied. The seasons long and everyone will show there worth or not but it’s still early days. I to would have liked to see Adli. Pobega wasn’t particularly good but I do see that he can grow and become a presence and nights exactly like last night will get him their quicker

      1. Grow up, this isn’t the early 90s, he’s a decent player to have in the squad in what’s only his 3rd or 4th game since being back from a loan spell where he was a regular starter. None of the new players look quite bedded into the team yet, which isn’t surprising with the season starting early.

    2. Pobega was never a CDM. He is not a good defender. Torino used him mostly in the attacking phase.

      Give the player some time to get used to Pioli’s tactics. HIgh pressing game takes some time to get used to. It took Tonali over a whole year to get used to it. Why are we expecting Pobega to do it in a few mins?

  2. Origi’s ball control is seriously lacking for a professional footballer. I understand why Klopp let him walk for free. We were wasteful tonight, but hell Origi was awful

    1. Before you make statements maybe check your facts. Klopp said he wanted to keep Origi but couldn’t guarantee him minutes. He also said he is one of the best finishers he worked with and under a manager that plays him regularly he will do really well. The guy needs to be back to full fitness and start playing he will be good for us and score some key goals.

  3. Saelemakers did probably have the best game of his life. He delivered a couple of nice crosses and he had some crafty dribbles.

    Tonali I don’t think deserved a 6.5. Three of his 4 corner kicks were TERRIBLE that didn’t even get over/past the first defender. That’s unacceptable. This website loves Tonali w/ the ratings and are always too generous. Don’t get me wrong, I love Tonali; but he always gets overrated by this website. Always.

    1. Right, sure he had his moments but he also had just as many really bad plays. I would have given him a 5. It’s clear Milan is missing Krunic as he would have been very useful in the later stages of this game.

    2. The ‘first defender’ is such 90s thinking. Have you noticed a lot more corners hit the first defender for all teams? It’s because lower, powerful corners on average get better results.

      More of them hit the first defender, but if it just clears the first defender and it’s coming down, it’s in a dangerous area with fewer things defenders can do to counter it.

  4. I will be very honest we didn’t deserved to win the only time we get into the game was when rb salzburg tempo dropped….their intense and aggressive style of play was too much for us we were literally stream rolled over all the park.if only they had classical finisher we would have been dead and buried long time back…..kalulu nutmeg reminded me messi and boateng moment. Phew that was one aggressive gengen press style of pressing. I just loved their play..none of a listers players had a finch at them.we should appreciate their performance all we would muster was tackles and fouls.

    1. @Meer

      Stop thinking with your feet brother, they Pressed for 20mins and got tired and Milan took over the whole match, ball possession was 66 – 34 to our own favour so what exactly is your point.

      Some people just come here to type rubbish immediately after getting on some drugs

      1. They pressed for 20 mins are you out of your mind or something….you really think possession means you dominated the match… old are you Kid . A piece of advice for you don’t deviate from football discussion, keep it football based….go watch the match and then come. I guess my feets work better than your brain…..

    2. I can’t agree with you more, what a horrendous display it was. Leao was garbage tonight, i get it he had 2-3 players on him the whole game but don’t be an idiot and challenge them again and again… pass the fucking ball! Learn from your mistakes!

      I mean compared to saeles other displays this was amazing, but man he was horrible to watch. I lost count on how many stupid decisions he made and how many times he lost the ball, Calabria was 100% right to loose his shit when he got the yellow because of him! The only good thing he did was be at the right place in the right time for the goal, the rest was really bad. Headless chicken on the pitch…

      The MOTM was definetly Tomori!!

      Time to forget this horrible display and focus on Sampdoria, this is the game to rotate players. Samdoria cant get worse than what they are now!

      The subs where a bit of imo, the only change that was neccesary at 1-1 was of Saele, get the 1-2 and then get the other changes in.

  5. Messias should never play again in Champions League. He is such a waste. So predictable. He always just cuts inside to his left foot — all opponents know it. He did it and dribbled into traffic when Dest was making an excellent fast run down the right side… Junior should’ve just played it into space toward the corner flag for Dest to pump in a cross but he just loses the ball which is all he ever does. He doesn’t help with defense. He does NOTHING. If Saelemakers can play HALF as well as he did today, then Messias should never play. Also Dest should play at RW so Messias SHOULD NEVER PLAY.

    1. My guy do you understand football. If that’s your reasoning then Bennacer should never play again either, and Robben is probably the worst player in history. Do you think Salzburg is a joke? They’ve been playing a lot more champions league football than us these past few years and have reached the round of 16 just last season. Maybe you should actually know your opponent before you talk rubbish. These RB Squads are responsible for the likes of Haaland and Mane. Both come from Salzburg

      1. BO what are you talking about? Are you actually comparing ARJEN ROBBEN to Messias!?!?!?! Talk about RUBBISH! That guy was one of the fastest and most skilled players in the past generation. Opponents knew he wanted to cut inside to the left yet he was so good they could never stop him! Because he also did successfully cut to the right and get in crosses w/ his weaker left foot! And I don’t even understand your comparison to Bennacer?

        What are you talking about!?!?! Get off these message boards w/ your trash please.

        Seriously, I almost spilled my drink when I read you compared Arjen Robben (a man who was voted into the FIFA WORLD ELEVEN) to Messias!!!
        aahahahahahahahahahahaaa… wow.

        At least compare him to Suso. my goodness… just stop. actually, keep going so you make me laugh again. I have more knowledge about this sport in my pinky finger than your entire brain.

        1. @DB
          He was reffering to the playing style you criticized of taking the ball to the left, he never compared the players, he was trying to lecture you that as a player who uses left, the ball always feels comfortable when it is on your left foot just like for players who uses the right foot.

          Sometimes, read the comment fully before you jump into to type another awol comment, messias uses left foot so do not use that against him, what else does he do if not take it to the left, critisce his game play but not his foot and that was what he was trying to lecture you on

          1. Kossy, I did read the comment; of course I understand why he’s comparing Messias and Robben (and I mentioned Suso and there are so many others who like to do that)… That is obvious to anyone who watches football and was unnecessary for him to say. But his comments IGNORE the fact that Messias is terrible at it and he should go to the right sometimes. Robben who was great, his “predictability” didn’t cause him to fail because he actually still sometimes was unpredictable and was successful in whatever he did. Messias is predictably terrible, as he has been all year.

            Also — BO’s post starts ranting about how great Salzburg is, as if I don’t know that. I know more about that team than he knows. Whatever….

      2. Where in my post did I ever say anything bad about RB Salzburg? I have very very closely followed that team as a Croatian American (they have had many of both and Marsch as coach — Brendan Aaronson just left of course from them to Leipzig then now Leeds). I know every player who has been on that team for years; so please if you assume you’re discussing something with a person who doesn’t even know that players the likes of Haaland or Mane came from then, you are mistaken.

        The fact of the matter is that you seem to be ignoring from my post which was my point is that MESSIAS SUCKS. He’s been absolutely terrible all year. He hasn’t had a single match this year that was good. Can you argue otherwise???????

    2. Settle down dude. Saelmakers played the game of his life today, but his previous start against Sassuolo he had one of the worst performances I’ve ever seen from a professional. Messias scored about 3 times as many goals as Saelemakers did last season playing probably 1/3 of the minutes. One game or even a couple does not erase that.

      1. 100% correct that it doesn’t erase that Saele has been bad. Saelemakers has generally been terrible, just like Messias — for a very, very long time. Everyone in the world (including myself on these message boards nonstop) has been talking about how RW has been by far the weakest position on our team for over a year now as both of them stink. Saele today happened to have the game of his life and I’m happy for him and how it helped us get a point. But, in the end, I still think Dest should start at RW now that we have him. He’s a better option than both Messias and Saele.

        1. The level of hyperbole on these comments is crazy. Players are the best or the worst.

          Both Salamaekers and Messias are decent, top half Serie A pros who contributed no small part to a league title last year. Both consistently put in tremendous effort for the team and are consistent cogs in Pioli’s tactics, especially with regards to the pressing game.

          Are there possible upgrades out there? Sure. If you think they play ‘the worst performances you’ve ever seen’ then you haven’t watched much football.

  6. Milan has got to be the worst passing team in the Champions League. Just terrible. Every pass is behind the man or too heavy. If they could pass better they would be really hard to beat but they are just so sloppy. And their corners and free kicks are just embarrassing. They get so many and do absolutely nothing with them. Tonali kicks it straight into the first defender every time, and Bennacer not much better.
    Also Milan have to stop conceding the first goal in every match! I hear everyone praise Tomori and Kalulu but they are over-aggressive and getting exposed too often. Can we get Kjaer back in there please.

    1. I have been complaining about milan’s passing accuracy for a very long time now. If they don’t improve their passing accuracy there is no way they will be able to progress in this competition like pirlo, seedorf and gattuso etc. did

  7. We did okay, concentration was the only thing lacking which is understandable after the Derby as most of the starters played in that game, Salzburg is no joke. I can see a lot of people didn’t really watch the match, we completely dominated possession, 66/34, passing was a bit down from but not terrible and the stats prove it, 82% Vs Salzburg’s 70%, we played a opponent that run a hell of a lot with little quality. We were complacent and it showed 16 shots and only 4 on target including Pobega’s clueless efforts. The boys didn’t play as a team, they were out there for themselves

  8. Can we try and grade players based on what they did in a game to game bases.
    Bennacer has been Milan’s most consistent player this season. Today he was Milan’s worst player, yet he got 6.5.
    It’s OK to admit he didn’t play good.
    Lost a lot of duels, misplaced so many passes and it was at fault
    for their goal. He was lazy and got the ball stolen from under his nose on Salzburg’s goal. Kalulu didn’t make a mistake he was just beaten by Okafor. Okafor is also a young talented skilled player. Kalulu didn’t do anything wrong, Okafor was just better than him in that situation.

  9. No, the passing was terrible. You can quote that stat all you want but of that 82% most of that is from the defender passing back and forth to each other or back to maignan. Anytime they tried to pass forward they were giving it away time after time.

  10. We faced a experienced Champions League outfit, this squad was in the last 16 last season and has delivered the likes of Mane and Haaland to the world. They’ve played a lot more champions League football than us these past few years. Well organized well drilled sqaud

  11. The passing struggles was probably due to tired legs. It was bad and Milan usually does better. Tonali had his moments but not enough. Pobega sucks I mean he is just terrible. I’d prefer Baka any day. Pobega almost single handedly gave the game away and stole the Milan’s best chance of winning (if he would have made the simple layoff to Leao game would have finished 2-1). In hindsight Pobega definitely should have been sold. He’s slow, poor technique and tactically dumb. It’s wishful thinking to give him a 6, 5 would have been generous as he showed unequivocally he is garbage. CDK has much to learn but I have faith.

  12. It baffles me that nobody have pointed out the most disturbing thing in this Milan team since the start of the season.

    This match summarized exactly what I am about to say….

    There is this competition going on in this team that is making everybody play for themselves unlike last season, it seems like players just want the glory for themselves and not the team, the cost us sassuolo and Atalanta match, it almost cost us the derby where Origi will refuse to pass the ball or take unnecessary shot… again it was visible, every player was trying to either dribble, or shot from wherever or take on every player, this is a huge problem and that cost us a win in this match.

    Why are our players becoming more more selfish, I have noticed this so much in our play and I hope pioli addresses this, before it cost us more points, these dude are 75% playing for themselves and it is ugly to see.

    1. true, really true. the reason why they can not compete with the big teams. CDK was frustrated because not getting any pass. I have my doubts with Pioli.

  13. Collection of thoughts:
    The set pieces are garbage, particularly corners. Maybe I’m the only one but I don’t put that all on Tonali—would it kill someone to make a near post run!? FFS. Also, I don’t know what the answer is in terms of midfield depth, but Pobega ain’t it. His will be a tale of a lost opportunity to cash-in. Fair play to Saele for always giving 110, even when he doesn’t play particularly well. Not sure why people are giving Dest the business—he’s been here like 96 hours, give him a minute to figure out his teammates. I watch a LOT of Barcelona, the kid had the goods. Origi I’m trying to give the benefit of the doubt for fitness reasons… but the early returns are awful. Chuck was wasted out there today and he needs to be involved more. Whether that is him demanding the ball or us force-feeding him I don’t care; he needs the ball. If Bennacer isn’t in the lineup we lose 3-0 and never get the ball out of our own end.

    1. By the way, our final-third decision-making skills are terrible. In general, not just against Salzburg. Coaching staff should be ashamed of how bad it is.

    2. Revan — all excellent comments. EXCELLENT.

      You are right on point regarding set pieces and Pobega, Dest, Bennacer, CDK and Origi. Early returns unfortunately haven’t been good on Origi; but I watched so much of him at Pool and Belgium and he is so smart and unselfish. I do trust he will turn things around and help us.

    3. Agreed, excellent comments. Only thing to add is that Calabria needs to concentrate less on being captain and more on being a footballer, it’s like he can’t do both or something. If he can’t do both at once give the captaincy to like the actual leaders of the club, like ibra or kjaer, Calabria as our captain has been our weak link on the pitch, focus on your game calabria, or you’ll stagnate like romagnoli. Also, forget this having our cms(bennacer and to Ali) take the corners. I always respected pioli becuz he usually made the right decisions, with subs and who plays, he was always reasonable. Like how he supported the right wingers when we all thrashed them cuz let’s admit it, we’re stupid milan supporters who always rush to judgments, and lo and behold our mom is saelemakers. But this cms taking our corners is just stupid, we should just hand them back the ball for corners, result would be the same, pioli needs to not get rattled by scudetto follow up season and just be reasonable again

  14. That’s what happens when you lose Kessie and think that Pobega is an adequate replacement. Not only is their starting midfield weaker but they have no depth. If Tonali or Bennacer get injured which they are both prone to do, Milan are in serious trouble.
    And seriously, we don’t have 1 player that can deliver a decent corner or set piece? Embarrassing.

  15. Let me give the real player ratings, I have said this over and over again, whoever is incharge of this player ratings This season article is doing a bad job:

    Maigan: 6
    Calabria: 6
    Kalulu: 5.5
    Tomori: 6.5
    Tonali: 6
    Benaceer: 6
    Theo: 6.5
    CDK: 5.5
    Salamankers: 7
    Leao: 6
    Giroud: 5.5
    Messias: 4.5
    Diaz: 5.5
    Origi: 5.5
    Pobega: 5
    Dest: 6

    It is a Shame that Adli who scored and was MOTM of the whole game played in preseason is in Milan while pobega and Diaz are in Europe, it is so despicable

    1. Haha Pobega got a 6.5 for Salzburg. But for real I was one of those “let’s see what Pobega can do” people and I must admit I was very very wrong. Should have sold him even if it was for a ham sandwich it would’ve been a good deal.

  16. At the end of the day, getting a point on the road against a team that went UNDEFEATED in last year’s Champions League is not a terrible result. We’re coming off of a great and emotionally and physically draining derby win and Leao’s shot hitting the post at the end, we were inches away from escaping with 3 points. This Salzburg team is very good (and frankly we’re lucky Sucic wasn’t available for them); but in the end, with the most talented (certainly most expensive) team in the group Chelsea dropping 3 points, we are still in a fine position.

    1. I don’t have as big of a problem with the result as I do the performance. So careless and sloppy with the ball, passing was awful, decision making poor, and the defense is giving up way too many chances lately. RB missed an open goal in the second half or Milan lose. If not for Maignan making 2 incredible saves against Inter, Milan concede 4 goals and lose that game. You cannot continue to concede the first goal in every match and expect to win anything. I’ll say it again, Tomori and Kjaer is a better balanced defense. You can’t have both of your CBs taking that many chances that high up the pitch.

      1. K,
        I agree with you. Tomori and Kalulu as CB pairing is way too risky. Yes, they’re great at making interceptions and risky tackles; but all it takes is getting beat here or there (i.e., see Brozovic a few days ago) and we can lose if not for Super Mike.

        I love Calabria; but his lack of pace has been exposed so often and his inability to make any impact going forward to deliver crosses really hurts our right sided attack.

        If we bench Calabria, start Kalulu at RB (where it’s more acceptable for him to run forward and take risks trying to get interceptions/tackles) which is his original position, then we have Tomori with Kjaer. Kjaer is so smart and well-positioned — the 2 of them together would be much safer CB pairing.

        That back four would help both our offense (Kalulu getting forward) and our defense/clean sheets.

        1. So who will sub kjaer when we wanna give him rest? Bring back Kalulu? Bring gabbia or thiaw because they are better 5han Kalulu in CB? Kalulu and Tomori didn’t concede only 2 goals in 9 games? Can kjaer okay high pressing games?

          Just shut up man, let the coach deal with it, you got no point, just a mistake and you are already panicking

          1. Kossy, there’s no “panicking” — I just think if we want to have our best 11 on the field, the back 4 should be Theo-Kjaer-Tomori-Kalulu. Kjaer played first half of last season excellently and we pressed those matches too (like Pioli likes to do).

            Why are you telling me to “shut up” — we are having a discussion and “let the coach deal with it”??? You think he’s checking what we are typing here to make his decisions! hahaha. I’m telling you what I think and actually, I think Pioli thinks this too. And that is why he subbed Kjaer in versus Inter when Calabria’s lack of speed was getting exposed and he moved Kalulu to the RB. You did watch Inter match, right?

            Kjaer isn’t fit yet so he’s not ready to play a full 90 minutes; but when he is, that back 4 is the back 4 of our best 11 on the field. There’s no question.

            In the end though, with this crazy packed schedule/calendar due to stupid FIFA making the World Cup in Qatar, we will rarely have our best 11 on the field at the same time because Pioli will have to constantly do so many player rotations (and probably we will have injuries too like all teams involved in Champions/Europa/Conference Leagues).

          2. And yes, OF COURSE, when either Kjaer or Tomori need a rest, we can bring back Kalulu to CB and then start Calabria — why? Because Calabria is a very good player and that is why we have players on the bench to use/rotate! Duh! And yes, sometimes (maybe against relegation type teams in Serie A?) I’m sure Pioli will give Thiaw a chance to play and Gabbia.

            Just saying, AGAIN, the best back 4 is Theo-Kjaer-Tomori-Kalulu. Period.

          3. “Why are you telling me to “shut up””

            Haven’t you noticed this forum is packed with “it’s my way or highway”-type of guys who will NOT tolerate ANY opposing comments or point of views? And when the run out of #fakenews they call “facts”, they’ll continue with the name-calling because there nothing more left in their arsenal.

        2. You think Kjaer would have done better than Kalulu on that Okafor goal? It was a great move by Okafor. Every defender gets beat from time to time
          If Kjaer was there instead of Kalulu , Kjaer right now would be scheduling his next ACL surgery . Kjaer should play at little as possible for Milan going forward. He is too slow. He can only play if Milan is going against a team that has a static striker like Giroud .

          1. What a dumb and disrespectful comment. It’s not about just the okafor goal, Milan have been giving up way too many chances this season. Did you not watch the Inter game over the weekend? They gave up 2 and only 2 incredible saves by Maignan kept it from being 4 goals. Milan have played 6 games so far and have conceded the first goal in 4 of them. You cannot win that way. Tomori and Kalulu worked for awhile at the end of last season ( partly because having someone like Kessie in the midfield helps out the defense a lot), but they both have gotten too aggressive and are getting exposed too often. By the way, the one game Kjaer started this season we held a clean sheet. What he lacks in pace he makes up for in his positioning and reading of the game. The same reason Thiago Silva can still start for Chelsea at his age. Everything is not about speed , morons.

          2. @K
            Just because a team gives up a goal doesn’t mean it’s the defense fault or specifically the 2 CBs.
            Vs udinese 2 goals conceded.
            1 from corner, Rebic lost his man, 2nd Messias lost his man.
            Vs Atalanta a midfielder scored from outside the box, Tonali lost Malinovsky.
            Vs Inter Yes both CB’s were high up the field, that’s what Pioli wants from them, but it was CDK and Tonali who watched Brozovic run past them
            On the 2nd goal both Calabria & Tomori got beat by their men Damian and Dzeko.
            Vs Salzburg Bennacer losses the ball in dangerous position , Okafor react quicker than Kalulu and scores.
            Outside of Dzeko goal none of the other goals were CBs fault or the defense.
            People can pretend we didn’t need Kessie but Tonali and Bennacer has been at fault for most of the concede goals , that’s why people were asking for Kessie replacement. There is a reason he played and 1 of Tonali or Bennacer was benched
            Kjaer kept a clean sheet vs the worst team Milan played this season and every time he touched the ball he sent it straight into the stands.
            Thiago Silva is a world class defender and an athlete but he also plays in a very defensive system with Chelsea. Chelsea plays with 6 to 7 defenders or defensive minded players. That’s why theri coach will be fired soon by the new owner.
            Make sure you know what the hell you talking about before you pump your chest and call people morons

          3. The 2 incredible save by Maignan vs Inter. 1 came from a cross after a broken play. The 2nd one was a Hakan shot from outside the box because Bennacer was way behind him.

          4. @Z You can make excuses for them all you want, but the fact is Milan is conceding too many goals and even more chances. You can breakdown each goal if you like but there are so many other chances that they have given up. Maignan has been called on to bail them out way more than he had to do last season. Yes, you can swing the blame to others who have lost their marker and left their man alone, but that is because everyone is scrambling to get back because when the D gets caught out. The D does not play as a unit, everyone is off doing their own thing. You already have Theo Playing further up than Leao half the time, you cannot have both of your CB’s taking chances that far up the field. It leads to a frantic recovery from your Midfielders, and yes, unmarked men. The only thing you can say about Kjaer is that he’s slow? Ok. Speed is useful to make up for mistakes and being out of position. I prefer a CB who doesn’t make those mistakes in the first place. I could name a dozen good CB’s who dont have great pace. Not to mention Kalulu is undersized and terrible at aerial duels. He is better suited at RB which is his natural position.

          5. @K
            That’s how Pioli wants his defense to play. To be aggressive and push up the field.
            Do you remember the situation in Genoa game when Kjaer tore his ACL? He was past the center field line. He isn’t suited for this kind of defending , just like Romagnoli, who is still a good defender, but neither one of them is good in space, 1v1, they are more of a zone defenders. Milan plays 1v1.
            I agree that Milan needed and still needs a taller defender next to Tomori (not Kjaer) and I do also think that Kalulu would be even better as a RB because he might be the only full back, midfielder or a winger on the team that can actually send a decent cross.
            If we already moving Kalulu to RB than I want Thiaw next to Tomori. I am thankful to Kjaer for everything he did but his time at Milan is done or he would play very sparingly

        3. I get what you’re saying but remember how all those “soft” goals stopped happening once he got hurt. The man admitted it himself he’s a step behind. I think Dest will be a good complement to Calabria for the RB. I suspect the defense is more exposed because Kessie provided a lot of cover for the CBs when they pushed up. Bennacer and Tonali haven’t been as good as Kessie was in that regard. I think that’s gonna be on Pioli to adapt his tactics to account for that rather than a personal/position change.

  17. I started to feel that Kessie is missing, especially when the schedule is tight. Isma and sandro could not play every match and their replacement (pobega) is either still adapting with the system or maybe under Kessie’s level. People in this site keeps talking about kessie was being good for 1 season, NO!! It was hard work of adaptation, understanding the system, and growth. Hopefully he would return on loan during winter (with Barca paying his salary), given his play time in Barca is less

  18. Milan played well just few players are not good origi pobega and messias pioli should give ADIL a chance we need to win our next match

  19. Milan should think about signing RB Salzburg RB #70 Amar Dedic. Make Rade Krunic call his countryman and start convincing him to join Milan. That kid is good. Took Leao out of the game and was pushing forward. He can be a great addition in the starting line up opposite Theo Hernandez

    1. Oh man! I thought Salzburg was joking when they put 18 years old player covering Milan left flank. And I thought it will be an easy target to exploit. But it turned out the joke was on me. He was aggresive, discipline, read the game and movement very well. Dedic was man of the match for me. He even make skriniar, de vrij and dumfries looks dumb. Man, I would like Milan to sign him. But unless people in this site will say, he is only good for one match. Foff

        1. Did you watch the game or you just saw the highlights and the stat sheet at the end of the game?
          Leao had an assist from a play action and numerical advantage created by a great CDK move. You could have made that pass to Saelemakers.
          He hit the post in the 95th minute and his shot was actually deflected and end up hitting the post.
          Besides those two incidents, that 20 year old had Leao in his pocket.
          And yes I want Calabria replaced with 20 year old Dedic. Calabria is still a starter only because of lack of money. If Milan had the money to buy a starting CB, like they wanted to this summer, Calabria would be 21 year old Kalulu’s back up right now at RB

  20. Below par performance by the team. We could have won the game if not for some moments of selfishness. Honestly, Origi is trash, Dest needs to up his offensive game, pobega is not just gonna give us any help, honestly sometimes I hate watching Tonali. We did way better before the substitutions. The team hardly gets CDK on the ball, it was a match to forget for him. I hope we don’t play this shambolic in our nxt match, we’re just showing we still have a long way to go. I believe we’ll always be the team.. Forza Milan

  21. This is why ido not pay attention to some ranting over here, All of you are now ranting about lack of quality In midfeild, I thought there were people who said krunic and pobega are better than Sanchez, while some are saying pobega will replace Kessie….Many drug addict comment here

    When I was saying that we need Sanchez just like he needs us, we can not get a Sanchez quality Type of midfeildEr for 15m anywhere, now we are left pobega, bakayoko, vrancxx (no experience), players that give nothing to the quality of the team.

    We wanted to give 4.5 to kessie and 3.2 to Sanchez, underpaying players that would have given us a big hand just like we could have given them a big hand, now they are panicking cos Leao want 7.5m, probably some will like him to go and expect whoever unknown we bring to replace him

    Let’s wait till something happens to benaceer, then we will all understand what I have been saying and that there is a huge difference between quality and quantity

    1. Bro if Sanches only wanted 4.5 mil, why did he sign for 6 mil at PSG? What happened? Did PSG say to him Don’t be silly, you aren’t asking for enough money, you are worth more than 4,5 that’s why will give you 6, out of goodness of our rich hearts.
      Cmon be serious

    2. Sanches only played 3 minutes +injury time against Juventus and you want Milan to recruit him and pay him €6 million? Lmao that’s a big waste.

      1. You do realize that most of PSG’s bench could start for Milan, right? I would feel very good with him starting alongside Bennacer. You could switch him in for Tonali or Bennacer and not be losing anything. It’s exactly what Milan needed to replace Kessie. Now if Tonali or Bennacer get injured Milan is screwed

        1. Most PSG players are overrated as fvck. I rather watch Krunic plays over Sanches and i bet Krunic will be more useful than what Sanches do in 5 minutes.

  22. CDK is either not involved in the game or Pioli simply doesn’t know how to integrate him in ACM position. The team is not able to pick him out on so many occasions although he is wide open. That being said, he still looks nervous. He needs to be given more confidence and play the full 90 multiple games. Origi needs more minutes, simple as that. Our left hand side is far superior to our right hand side. It’s becoming an easy to guess game for our opponents.

  23. Milan is so dependent on Bennacer and Tonali… Nothing can replace them. Krunic may be able but also injured.
    And starting to look, they are starting to run out of energy and it is feared that they could get injured

  24. I don’t see why Kalulu is to blame… yes he was beaten, but Calabria is just all over the place, he created the room for that pass, including the second one that almost cost us the match.

  25. Origi’s performances are very concerning. Being poor is one thing but he doesn’t have the right attitude to turn it around. He reminds me of Pellegri that we just got rid of.

  26. Actions speak louder than words. Klopp never made Origi the starter and didn’t fight to keep him. He can say all great things about Origi but his actions say otherwise.

  27. The biggest mistake AC Milan do are buy permanently junior. That close the door for ziyech or other RW. Yes he is cheap price & salary only 1m euro nett but flop. Since there is nothing we can do about junior & pioli dont want change formation to 4321/4312 , the best way are play dest in RB partner saladmaker RW or play calabria in RB partner dest in RW. Dest need partner on right side that are good on defending and can do dirty job defense right side

  28. Calm your ti.ts gentlemen. It’s only the first game against a more experienced opponent.

    Seems like I watched a whole different game based on these comments. Salzburg with the early aggressive press at home, got the goal, ran out of steam/tempo, we eventually took over control of the game through better possession. Lacked the quality on final third of the pitch. And lacked proper subs/depth (missing Kessies much now? Pobega fans?). Did I miss anything here? A Point was fair.

  29. Because you are just a dumb fanboy who thinks all Milan players are great and everyone who didn’t come to Milan or left Milan sucks. If you actually think Krunic is a better player than Sanchez or anywhere close to what Kessie was than you should just stop watching football altogether. You don’t understand what you are watching.

  30. Hernandez for me was terrible. Critical passing mistakes, losing the ball in too many scary positions. Did as much bad as good.

    Would not call Origi bad just yet, but he really has to up his game

  31. Here is my question…what would be if our opponenet were MAN CITY?? Will we hope for a surprise? After group stages we won’t meet Salzburg..

  32. How long are you people going to talk about Kessie.He is no more our player so get used to the players we have not.It sucks when you guys keep on mentioning Kessie after every match we draw or lose.
    Do you guys think RB are an easy team to beat.They haven’t lost in their home for a while if you don’t know.We are even lucky we got a point.
    To those who don’t think defenders don’t make mistakes what game do you watch.You people complain too much meanwhile you don’t know anything about the game.

    1. Indeed. As if the team who hasn’t lost a home game in UEL for ages and ALMOST won Bayer München there last season in the second round is a “walk over”-opponent for any club out there.

      The away draw was a decent opener for Milan. In fact I think Milan were lucky to get a point as the home side was more dangerous.

      Kessie? Doesn’t play for us – not our concern. He wasn’t shining in his first 10 matches (and neither was Tonali) in Milan-shirt so I’m not worried about Pobega & Vrancxk either. Pobega will return to his level soon enough.

    2. I think fans have a right to be upset when the team continues to let our best players leave and don’t even bother to replace them. And it’s a reminder to all the idiots on here who were killing Kessie because he just wanted to be paid what he is worth.

      1. ” And it’s a reminder to all the idiots on here who were killing Kessie because he just wanted to be paid what he is worth.”

        People here are a real joy to follow. If one doesn’t share their view on players/things, the name-calling and bashing begins immediately.

        Kessie wasn’t/isn’t worth being the biggest earner in Milan. Remind me again how many losses Milan has suffered in Serie A & UCL since Kessie left? Naah, not missing him one bit.

          1. Once again good proof about people resorting to insults as they fail to provide anything constructive. Tells more about the writer than the one who (s)he is trying to insult. Just pathetic.

  33. If giroud had played the whole game we would have scored again. He links much better than origi.
    I was hoping to see Dest as a RW subbing salemaekers but pioli put mesias instead.

  34. First of all, we played against a team that is KNOWN for it’s intense gameplay and pressing.

    Anyone criticising bennacer, should know that he held up the midfield against Salzburg against their intensity. Otherwise, we could’ve conceded at least 2 goals.

    Tonali wasn’t in the game for the first half this match. Salzburg attacks were too fast for him and he couldn’t keep up with the slow pace.

    Everyone’s bashing Pobega. But this guy is just new. Let him get used to our tactics. Then we can call for his head after half a season. But he definitely had a bad game.

    Picking Diaz over Adli was BIG Mistake. Diaz is .. well.. for the lack of a proper term.. Useless.

    Saele was VERY useful with his dribbling against the high press of salzburg. Well played.

    As for our defense, They were really good. Blocked most of Salzburg’s attacks effectively. As frequently as Salzburg attacked, I don’t get why everyone is expecting CBs to block every attack. What’s Tonali and Pobega and our LBs RBs there for? CBs played well. Midfield was awful. Tonali and Pobega picked today to bring their worst performances. Thank god we had bennacer. But he was tired. Eitherway, Pobega had a bad game.

    But the way we played, is not how champions play. Even I don’t suffer This many missed passes in the Sunday league where I play in. Giroud was AWFUL. He just knocked the ball in random directions without even seeing where the players are. We lost possession all by ourselves like total Mor.ons by simply just passing to their players.

    The worst part is..

    LEAO Is the ONLY Attacker in Milan who was anything of a threat. Salzburg didn’t even need to mark ANYONE else in Milan. Hell our RW found Salzburg’s defense open most of the time and couldn’t do ANYTHING. And By ANYTHING, I mean they couldn’t make ONE SINGLE SUCCESSFUL ATTACK THE WHOLE GAME. Even Saele’s goal came from Leao’s assist. How can a whole right side be THIS BAD AND USELESS?

    Pioli really needs to work on our composure and attacking plays. Also, we need to get someone better to take the set pieces. Adli would’ve been better.

    Overall, a draw is a fantastic result on Salzburg’s turf. But the gameplay was pathetic from our end specially when we know we can do much much better.

  35. I see this as a point gained rather than 2 lost. Salzburg was never going to be an easy game, but Milan looked predictable again. Once Salzburg had snuffed out the left side threat, we had nothing else. Wasteful in possession in midfield and slow to get the loose ball, Salzburg looked so much better in this aspect and they looked much more accomplished in possession.
    In the second half we looked more comfortable with Dest on the right. Calabria is going to be difficult to replace in that position given his captaincy, but that is what needs to happen. He is slow defensively, prone to a yellow card and his decision making in the final third is flawed. Kalula is a great rotation on the right flank and we have Kjaer and Thiaw/Gabbia to cover the CB position.
    Giroud looks like what he was in London, a bench striker and we need to be looking at the front position in the January window. The jury is out on Origo as he needs regular game time to be effective and that means starting; something he is not used to.
    Our big signing in the summer, CDK is waiting to perform, yet we are not giving him the ball. When he does get it, he is comfortable on the ball and generally picks out a great pass, but he needs to be used much more, or he we will be harping on little mistakes he makes when he finally does get it. Otherwise he might as well sit on the bench.
    Finally, Leah and Theo see a lot of the ball and I expect to see a lot more from them. Their passing and decision making puts our defense under pressure more than it should, when they give away posession in promising positions.
    It was a frustrating watch and thank goodness we have Magic Mike in goal. He has kept us in it on many occasions and is one of the big reasons we won the Scudetto..

    1. “Giroud looks like what he was in London, a bench striker and we need to be looking at the front position in the January window. ”

      Giroud is a striker who is at his best in the penalty box. When Milan fail to feed him the ball there he looks uncomfortable. Not really his fault as everyone knows he’s not famous for his talent in the halfway-line or game-creating skills. It’s the trident behind him that make him look bad in these matches as they fail to get the ball to him in the box. Same applies to Rebic too. To get the best out of them they need the ball inside the penalty box and they should stay away from the halfway-line.

      Origi? Looks terrible but then again he was out for 2 months and is in a new place etc. I won’t judge him yet – even though I was never happy about him joining us as I’ve always considered him overrated. But we’ll see, we’ll see….

  36. I think MOTM should be Leao. He played under high pressure. Zalzburg hanged two-three defenders on him. But he was the only one who caused danger to them. Also that lovely assist and potential goal on the very last minute.
    Considering how much work he did to bring us derby win, his performance and will to play were great.

  37. This website has such a hard-on for Tonali, it’s ridiculous. He’s the slowest and worst midfielder I’ve ever seen. He makes Amborsini look lightning fast. Screw him, and anyone who is a fan of his. I’m sick of his lack of pace, his lack of skill, his crappy set-pieces and all the misplaced passes. He doesn’t deserve more than a 5.

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