These are my thoughts: Unexpected success has inevitably made Milan fans greedy

By Isak Möller -

We’re 22 games into the season and Milan are currently in second place, just one point behind their city rivals Inter ahead of what will be the biggest derby in years this weekend. Yet, the feeling is it could have been better. 

The Rossoneri were battered in the first half of the 2019/20 season, poised by a seemingly non-existent project conducted by Marco Giampolo, as well as the resulting managerial switch to Stefano Pioli. What had become the new normal for Milan just repeated itself, with yet another manager replaced.

But over a year since that took place, the team finds itself in one of the best positions since the 2011/12 season. Without going into much detail about what changed after Pioli came in, it’s clear that the club has achieved the effect of a revamp without actually doing that much, rather focusing on targeted solutions.

It’s the success that Milan fans had been dreaming of, reminiscing of the glory days and what once was for this historic and great club. And after what seemed like an eternity, they are back on the path to success and the conclusion to the 2019/20 season certainly alluded to this.

And now, with 22 games played, not just Milan but also their cousins are back at the top of Italian football. And the upcoming derby – scheduled for Sunday afternoon – not only brings back great memories but also gives us hope for a future that indeed could be a lot more favourable for the two clubs. If you fancy a flutter on the game, check offers from Unibet.

Yet, as mentioned, the feeling is that the present situation could have been even better, a utopia of sorts based on the expectations going into the season. Everyone will probably agree that, on a whole, Milan will have to continue like this in order to achieve continuous success on a long-term basis.

However, with this recent success – as is only natural for us – the expectations that have been exceeded to such a huge extent have been normalised. In fact, after one loss (albeit a shocking one) the Milan players are facing a pressure they probably never have experienced before.

Here you are, a relatively young player that, together with a great squad and team mentality, has given the fans more than they could have wished for ahead of the season. But even so, as the season goes on and results continue to arrive, the new normal emerges and the judgement is distorted.

As said, this comes naturally to us as human beings; why settle for a piece when you can have the entire cake? Well, just as you might want to decide against eating an entire cake for health reasons, there are factors to be considered in sports as well and these are important not to forget.

The thing with distorted expectations is that you could head down a negative path, a harmless circle if you like, where logical thinking is taken out of the equation in the pursuit of your dream. And in Milan’s case, of course, the Scudetto is the dream that would be a bonus to what is the real goal.

The real goal being Champions League qualification, which would enable the club to return to its glory days and invest more just like the other top clubs. This has to remain the priority for very obvious reasons, starting with the financial impact, exposure and the subsequent effects that follow.

That is not to say that Milan shouldn’t dream and fight for the Scudetto, but they can’t lose sight of what is the long-term goal of the club’s project. If too much energy is put into winning the league, there will inevitably be negative effects if things don’t always go their way.

And these negative effects, such as a dip in form, could be fatal for a club in such a crucial part of the season. It would be disastrous to miss out on a top-four finish and that is, unfortunately, a possibility given how tight the race is. Though it remains unlikely, therefore, it can’t be ignored.

Anyone can alter their goals if the initial ones are being exceeded far by imagination, but it’s arguably a dangerous game to play and that can be seen through the Milan management’s statements on the matter. They have always been and remain very clear in this regard: a top-four finish.

While keeping level-headed is important, for all the reasons touched on, hope is what drives us, especially in sport. There is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to fight for the Scudetto, therefore, but the danger comes when fans start criticising the team for one misstep.

The players will inevitably be aware of this themselves and instead, they need support more than anything else, especially in the middle of a season like this one. Perhaps the lesson-learned from this unexpected success is that nothing should be taken for granted, a couple of poor results and you could be at risk.

At the weekend, all it took was one loss, I repeat one, to change the discourse entirely around the team and while this is somewhat perfectly natural, this is not the time to get greedy. After all, it remains in the hands of the players and all we can do at this point is support them, they have done enough to be given a break.

READ MORE: Amazing teaser video ahead of Milan and Inter’s biggest derby clash in years

Tags AC Milan Serie A Stefano Pioli

5 Comments

  1. Emanuel Galdes says:

    Apologistic writings of this sort are of their nature essentially disgusting like the 4 successive disgusting matches against Juventus, Inter, Atalanta and Spezia.

  2. Martin Bernhard says:

    Its not that i disagree with your overvrall sentiment that people needs to keep supporting the team even when we lose but i think you completely missed one point and that is that milan has been playing with fire for a long time and id go as far to say late november early december and could easily have had lost many more matches had we not had lady luck on our side. I can live with us losing as thats part of the game but when we play as lousy as we did against spezia of all teams well then anybody involved deserves to get scolded for their attitudes and perfomances alike. Id like to add that why didnt we get thauvin in january where we propably could have gotten him for 5-7 mil as marseille are fully aware they would lose him for nothing come july. It has been obvious to anyone that our right wing is weak and needed somekind of an upgrade.

  3. Jj says:

    Well said and spot on. One loss and its like a tragedy. One point off the leaders who were built for the Scudetto who are out of Europe ie playing only one game a week. We’re punching waaay above our weight. This was never Milan’s to win. It’s Inters to lose. They and Juve still have the best squad equipped for the Scudetto. Our real goal is a return to UCL for a few years running then we can talk about a serious consistent project. A Scudetto is just the cherry on top of our champions league qualification cake but the cake doesn’t have to have the cherry.

  4. Rossoneri says:

    This season I think we have changed our style a bit. We are much more careful and cactical in periods of the game.
    Against Spezia we didnt fight for a single ball, and it looked like pioli thought he could cruise it home without overloading the players to much.
    I hope Pioli and the players are ready to go 110% again, starting from Inter game or else we will be fighting for 4th spot in a couple of weeks with Lazio Napoli and Atalanta.

  5. Kourosh says:

    A loss can happen, even to a small club, but the manner in which it happens is important. To be completely dominated and not have a single shot on target is the problem here, not the loss.

    We should be worried, it was not a simple misstep. Now every opponent knows how to beat Milan easily, just press vehemently high up the pitch like Atalanta and Spezia.

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