Torino 2-1 AC Milan: Rossoneri fall further behind Napoli after lacklustre display

By Oliver Fisher -

AC Milan’s unbeaten away league run was ended on Sunday night as they fell to a 2-1 defeat away against Torino after what was a lacklustre display.

Milan missed early chances and ultimately paid the price in what was a damaging two-minute spell in the first half. The first goal for Torino came from a free-kick as an unmarked Djidji headed past Ciprian Tatarusanu, and the second goal came shortly after with Aleksei Miranchuk finishing with a deflected shot.

The Rossoneri were gifted a route back into the game when a long hopeful ball from Sandro Tonali was not dealt with as a miscommunication between Milinkovic-Savic and Buongiorno saw the ball fall to Junior Messias who curled into a virtually empty net.

The result means that Milan were unable to keep pace with the other teams around them that won and Napoli now move six points clear, while Inter and Juventus gain ground.

Stefano Pioli opted to make multiple changes to his starting line-up compared to the team that beat Dinamo Zagreb in midweek as Fikayo Tomori returned from suspension, Tommaso Pobega came into the double pivot to face the team he was on loan at last season while Junior Messias, Brahim Diaz and Divock Origi came into the attack.

The first chance of the game fell to Rafael Leao as Brahim Diaz found the winger with a smart switch ball to the far side but unfortunately the ball was never really brought under control and the eventual effort from inside the box was sliced wide.

Another golden opportunity presented itself to Leao and again it was Brahim Diaz who fed the Portugal international on the break, this time with a pass along the ground that seemed like it just needed stroking home with a sidefoot and yet again Leao scuffed the shot.

There was a moment of concern for the Rossoneri on the quarter-hour mark as Pierre Kalulu went to the floor and was writhing in pain after getting an accidental boot in the face from Nikola Vlasic, however he was able to continue.

Torino forced a smart save from Ciprian Tatarusanu in the 19th minute as ex-Milan loanee Pietro Pellegri was found with a ball in behind that allowed him to fire at the near post, and moments later the Romanian goalkeeper caught a shot from Aleksei Miranchuk after the resulting corner was not cleared.

Two quickfire yellow cards for the home side told the story of how disjointed and scrappy the opening half was, and Leao was left kicking himself again after letting fly from around 20 yards out after a Granata player stumbled to leave him in space yet he laced his shot well over.

It was Torino who took the lead ten minutes before the break and it was a set piece that was Milan’s undoing again. Kalulu was penalised for a foul near the touchline and the resulting free-kick was headed in by an unmarked Djidji via the far post.

Less than two minutes later they had doubled their lead and this time it was Miranchuk who got his name on the scoresheet. As Torino players appealed for a handball from Gabbia, the Russia international seized possession and fired past Tatarusanu with a low shot into the bottom corner.

Pioli’s response to a poor first half was to make a triple change signifying his unhappiness. Kalulu came off for Sergino Dest, Brahim Diaz was withdrawn for Charles De Ketelaere and Leao made way for Ante Rebic.

Milan created their first dangerous chance in the fifth minute of the second half as Rebic’s first action was to whip in a teasing ball that drifted across the face of goal but was just in front of two runners, Origi being the closest.

Dest became the latest to try his luck when a darting run inside from his right-back position saw the ball bobble up and he put his foot through it though it fizzed over the bar.

Milan were gifted a route back into the game as Messias halved the deficit midway through the second half. A long and hopeful ball towards the Brazilian looked like it would be easily dealt with but some miscommunication between Buongiorno and Milinkovic-Savic saw the keeper stranded in No Man’s Land giving Messias the task of curling into an empty net.

With 20 minutes left on the clock and Ivan Juric having been sent off for dissent shown towards the referee, Pioli opted to bring Tonali off for Ismael Bennacer.

A final change came for Milan with 13 minutes left on the clock as Olivier Giroud came on for Messias, meaning that Pioli decided to go with two up front in search of the equalising goal.

The last chance that Milan fashioned was a free-kick that was nicely positioned centrally around 25 yards out but was struck into the wall and went behind for a corner, with appeals for a penalty for handball rejected by the referee and the resulting set piece headed over.

Tags AC Milan Torino - Milan


  1. Besides that early missed chance by Leao we did not create even one dangerous opportunity for the whole game against Torino (!). Embarrassing! I have no words, and if we keep losing such points, we will need to forget about catching up with Napoli.

  2. Tomori was awful today. Out to lunch. He was pulled out of position so often that he looked like a rookie. Gabbia looked far better. Rafa has to put one of those chances away. Totally different game in that case. I don’t understand pulling of the goal scorer for Giroud when Origi had done nothing all match, and pulling of Tonali instead of Pobega when you know a late set piece can win you the game. Bad tactics, bad attitude from the players, and an overall terrible performance.

    1. Because we have that deciding game vs Salzburg, Sandro and Isma will most likely to start. It’s all about mentality in this game. We didn’t that usual hunger. And yes, if we scored on those early chances, it’d be a totally different match.

  3. Pioli really made a big blunder here 🤦‍♂️

    And two wasted chances by Leao at the first half punished Milan. If he scored, Milan shouldn’t be in this position 🤦‍♂️

  4. Shameful display from milan today most especially from Leao..He made the match tough for milan..i pray they dont play like this against sazburg

  5. 7 Million Dollar Men should score from such sitters. Here’s what will happen if you don’t. Absolutely disgraceful display by EVERYONE. Not a single player on the pitch who deserves any compliments.

    CDK, Origi, Leao. They did absolutely NOTHING.

      1. Messias also did nothing. That goal was luck, nothing more. If we’re being fair, VAR probably should have disallowed it. But even after the goal, we were completely useless.

        1. VAR should disallowed it? For what? Barely touching Buongiorno’s shoulder? LOL, get real.

          Luck? You go and try to hit the net from that angle yourself. Messias did also give a perfect pass to Origi who squandered that chance.

          I’m not saying Messias deserves a 10 but at least he did SOMETHING.

  6. Only Pioli knows what he was thinking taking our best player off at HT! That aside it was a tired, lazy performance; couldn’t win a ball until air, second to every 50/50 ball and handling the ball like a hot potato.
    Embarrassed by a worthy Torino side, comfortable on the ball and hungry from the off.
    Salzburg will be licking their lips…

  7. If we lose to Salzburg, Pioli needs to leave. This is not good enough. I’m sick of watching donkeys like Rebic, Messias, Pobega and Gabbia play for this club.

  8. Terrible game. I think some of our players really need to step up.
    I’ve never seen a professional player with a bad first touch like Rebic.
    Pobega, if he’s our rotation option to rest Isma, then we’re screwed.
    I actually like Gabbia, I think he’s a very decent young player. He will grow with this performance as he was the hero just a few days ago so these lessons are needed.
    When Leao, Isma, Theo and Tonali aren’t performing, our other players need to STEP UP!
    Despite the poor performance, I think we know all know leagues aren’t won in the 13th game.
    I remember last season against Torino as well when we drew and we thought we had screwed up the Scudetto.
    So please guys, justifiably, let’s be angry, but we know a season is long, it’s a marathon.
    It’s definitely not over by a long shot, don’t let the media headlines decide who is taking the Scudetto home.
    The Kvara, Leao comparisons, the Napoli bandwagon, the Atalanta, Lazio comparisons.
    The Scudetto still needs to be won on the pitch. And it’s far from over.
    The fat lady hasn’t even thought of singing yet, she’s still sleeping even.
    Forza Milan

  9. Tomori is shaky at the moment, he is making it hard for the defence. I have no words for CDK, I am not sure what happened to Milan after those two missed chances and I am struggling to take any positive from today’s match.

    1. They keep saying CDK needs time. Yeah, clearly. But that time can be spent on the bench too where he’s NOT hurting our play. He was catastrophically bad yesterday. Again.

  10. Pioli is the luckiest coach ever without ibrahimovic he would be sack like two years ago this is not high level footbal they look stupid on the field only long balls they cant drible pass opponents tonali is just tank nothing more theo was much better at dribling first year its the training methods they building tanks not football players

  11. I truly wonder what and how much it takes to get a decent goalie seriously. Tata is not supposed to be anywhere near the Milan post. How slow he is in even diving for the ball, slow in launching the ball forward for a quick counter attack, slow in arranging the defense and every other fvcking thing. I will say this, our management need to do better, it doesn’t matter if we win the scudetto again but truth be told, the team is below average. We are just lucky to have other underperforming serie A contenders now.

    For this match Milan played almost as bad as the match between Chelsea and Milan in Stamford bridge. Leao and Tatarusanu were the worst culprit.

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