AC Milan’s first goal of the 2022-23 Champions League group stage campaign came courtesy of someone perhaps unexpected in Alexis Saelemaekers.
The Belgian scored not only his first goal of the season, but also his first goal in the top European club competition. MilanNews also remark that he hadn’t scored in official matches for 236 days, with his last being on 13 January 2022 in the Coppa Italia against Genoa.
After the game, Saelemaekers told Mediaset: “It must be an important season for me. I know my numbers in recent seasons have not been very good, but I’m working on this and I’m happy to have helped. the team with this goal.”
It is perhaps becoming apparent as Saelemaekers develops that he is not a natural goalscorer, but any winger starting for a team wanting to win trophies must produce a bare minimum, and in the last two seasons he has just five goals combined.
The former Anderlecht man is the first to know that he must improve his attacking numbers at all costs with goals and assists more regularly, especially given that Stefano Pioli has often preferred Junior Messias to him since he arrived.
Now, we must hope that yesterday’s goal can give him the right push to gain some momentum, confidence and a case to get his starting place back.