Rating Milan’s signings for the 2021/22 season – From Maignan to Giroud

By Rohit Rajeev -

It’s been just over a month since AC Milan clinched their first Scudetto in over eleven years. Work is already underway on the mercato for the upcoming term, but it’s well worth taking a look at the previous signings. 

Ahead of the 2021/22 season, Milan made a total of thirteen signings if the redemptions are included as well (such as Sandro Tonali). Some did really well, some did less well, and down below we rate each signing.

Olivier Giroud (7.5/10): Derbyman! His heroics in the derby will never be forgotten for quite some time by Milan fans. Giroud’s double against Inter created a tectonic shift in the title race and eventually gave the momentum for Milan to win.

Not only did he perform single-handedly but his crucial goals against Lazio, Napoli and Sassuolo showed how important he was to Milan’s landscape. All of this came at a measly transfer fee of €1m and €3.5m wages. Masterclass from Paolo.

Brahim Diaz (3/10): A makeshift replacement for Calhanoglu, Diaz had an impressive debut season and fans expected him to build on that. He seemingly did that with four goals and two assists until he suffered from Covid-19 and after that, he just withered away.

Milan initially secured Diaz on a two-year loan with the option to buy at €22m. It seems he will stay for one more year and hopefully, he can convince management to redeem him (but he will need to be a lot better).

Junior Messias (5/10): His backstory captured a lot of interest and he didn’t convince Milan fans when he arrived partly because they were lulled into believing Milan were due for a big RW signing. Messias had an injury to begin with initially, but he showed the Milan fans what he could do with the winner against Atletico. But the rest was just okay.

Fode Ballo-Toure (2/10): Once Diego Dalot left, Milan needed a deputy for Theo and Moncada turned to his old club Monaco and a player he knew: Ballo-Toure. There were doubts about his quality of defending and all of those doubts came to fruition when the derby came and his defending led to a penalty.

He cost Milan €4m and given how expensive fullbacks have become, Milan didn’t have many options as the budget was limited.

Tiemoue Bakayoko (2/10): Milan needed depth in midfield and they turned to a familiar name in Bakayoko. An outcast at Chelsea, Bakayoko had found his calling at Milan in the 18/19 season and Maldini seemed to have persuaded the English side to let him go (once again).

He got injured in his first game and later, after a few error-filled moments, Bakayoko was used very sparingly. He hardly featured and there is already a lot of doubt cast on his future at Milan. He was initially signed on a two-year loan but it looks like he could leave early.

Alessandro Florenzi (5/10): Florenzi was brought in as cover for Calabria when Diogo Dalot went back to United after his loan. The Italian brought with him experience and was able to challenge Calabria for his spot. His first season suffered a few injuries but whenever he was available, he impacted the game in one way or another.

At one point, he even threatened to take over Calabria’s spot. Finally, Florenzi came at a loan with a salary of €3m. Milan have finally redeemed him this season (for just around €2.5m) and he will be a Milan player.

Pietro Pellegri (1/10): A prodigy who was taken in by Monaco to replace departing star Mbappe. His career was over even before it started due to injuries. Younger than Mbappe and Haaland, Milan took a punt at him in a risk-free loan at €1m with an option to buy at €6m.

Like at Monaco, his Milan career was blighted by injuries. He couldn’t last 20 minutes on his full debut vs. Salernitana and was stretchered off before he was shipped to Torino. Pellegri sad to say was our worst transfer.

Adli, Lazetic and Mirante (N/A): Adli, the talented midfielder, was loaned back to Bordeaux as soon as Milan bought him. High expectations have been placed on him ahead of the upcoming season. Lazetic, another star earmarked for the future, is rumoured to be sent on loan out to gain experience. Mirante, another player brought in as a backup and now redeemed, is useful for the squad list.

Sandro Tonali (7/10): Tonali’s transfer was inspiring. Not only did Milan obtain a discount on him, but he reduced his wages to move to his boyhood club. Tonali, however, grew into Milan this season and had many memorable performances (most notably his last-minute heroics against Lazio).

He had a few patchy games and wasn’t the most consistent player but he showed up when it mattered and that gave Milan the necessary push.

Fikayo Tomori (9/10): Tomori had already given Milan a great display of why they needed to redeem him at €28m. He built on his performances last season and despite injuries, he grew into games and formed a formidable partnership with Kalulu. Now, the management wants to give him a raise and that says a lot.

Mike Maignan (10/10): Statistically the best goalkeeper in Europe, Maignan’s €13m transfer fee seems like a bargain and perhaps is the best transfer in the market for all clubs. Based on the fact that PSG paid close to €40m last season in wages and commission for Raiola to get Donnarumma, Milan managed to save AND get an upgrade.

Overall market (5.1/10): An above-average market, Maldini was right to ask for more autonomy with Elliott since Milan’s eternally most important positions, attacking-mid and right-wing were completely ignored due to budgetary restrictions.

Tags AC Milan


  1. The best transfer was obviously Maignan, but the worst wasn’t Pellegri , it was by far Bakayoko.
    Pellegri was a punt. Not many fans expected much out of him, he had more injuries in his career than goals.
    Bakayoko was supposed to be Kessie’s back up and this dude looked like he never kicked a ball before in his life. And he got a hefty(for Milan standards) 2.5 mil salary.
    Also Milan bringing Brahim back on loan without an obligation was a great deal. I don’t know what was so impressive about Brahim’s debut season. He only looked good when he played alongside Hakan. He should never be a starter again

  2. I am a Milan fan and I rate the players this way: those who have the club at heart get a 10; those who are only after the money get a 0.

  3. I don’t think Giroud deserved a better grade than, for example, Tonali! He was excellent in a few games especially in the derby, but there were many days when he was completely inconspicuous and when even Rebic had to change him as a striker. Four men in defence and Mike in goal probably got us the title !

      1. Did you really watch him play? Goals dont fools people, its goals that make you win games, i take goals and win over rubbish game. Not everyday a good game.

  4. Giroud was a absolute bargain ,the man is technically brilliant ,had it not been for him ,we would not have won the scuddeto…Maignan what can I say superb goalkeeper,and I believe the best in Europe,,and yes tonali also finnished the season brilliantly ..
    The team overall were super ,and produced some outstanding performances ..let’s not forget the management..it’s team performance that counts .
    Looking forward to another exciting season from Milan ,and indeed from a player I have always rated Olivier Giroud…This man has great belief and such a desire to win..I am expecting another very good season from him ,bring it on !

  5. My rating:

    Giroud: 7
    Diaz: 5
    Messias: 5,5
    Ballo-Toure: 4
    Bakayoko: 1
    Tomori: 8
    Tonali: 8
    Florenzi: 6
    Pellegri: 2
    Adli/Lazetic/Mirante: N/A
    Maignan: 9

  6. Good evening , please try to Rafael ,to help the team also bring new stickers.God bless ltaly God A.C. Milan ♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️

  7. Tonali was fantastic and improved as the season went on. For his age, he’s unbelievable. He’s a born leader. 5/10 is a stupid rating for the transfers, given the little money available, to strengthen the team and upgrade in some, not all, areas, was remarkable. Milan won the scudetto with a Europa League squad.

  8. I think that rating on Tonali was reasonable. He started well, but was out of the starting eleven midway through the season (februar-march), and then came back on form for the last 5-10 games.

  9. I think that rating on Tonali was reasonable. He started well, but was out of the starting eleven midway through the season (februar-march), and then came back on form for the last 5-10 games. The media-hype on Tonali in Italy has been a bit exagerrated.

  10. Bakayoko (voto zero) non c’entra niente con il Milan, nella lista non vedo Kalulu che per me è stata la vera sorpresa

  11. A few comments:

    Bakayoko, no point keeping him next year

    Diaz, had a bad season but was put in a difficult position. Leao was often tripled marked, Giroud isolated, and he had no realistic passing options on the right. Hopefully next year with an effective right sided attacker, he will have more space and passing options

    Giroud, good season. Was often left isolated, and his service relied on nothing from the right side of attack, an out-of-form Diaz and triple marked Leao.

    Tonali – Correct rating, maybe should have been higher

    Florenzi – thought he did well and deserved a slightly higher rating.

    TOP TIP: If we reinforce the right, and he has a good summer to recover from Covid better, I predict Diaz to return to form.

  12. Diaz was doing good initially before covid/injury. He deserves more than 3.
    Florenzi had a good impact on the team, not just on the field. He was always there motivating and advising players with his experience. Even in field he deserves a better rating. Tomori and Maignan was great but does not deserve 9 and 10. may be 8 and 9 good enough.

  13. Florenzi and Giroud should have higher scores. Florenzi especially much better than a 5.
    Giroud won HUGE games for us… c’mon!

    Bakayoko terrible.

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