AC Milan were much improved from their derby defeat against Inter during their Champions League opener last night, but they failed to get the win they wanted.
This morning’s edition of Tuttosport (via MilanNews) picks out some of the negative notes first of all, starting with the fact that Milan had 25 shots and could not score a single goal.
Rafael Leao’s missed opportunity was emblematic of all this: the Portuguese winger beat two Newcastle defenders inside the box and seemed ready to hit it on his right foot, but instead he went for a backheel finish and fell over.
It must also be said that Nick Pope also had an excellent performance for Newcastle, especially in the first half when thwarted several of Milan’s chances.
Meanwhile, bad news arrives on the injury front as Mike Maignan came off about ten minutes from the end due to a muscle problem, confirmed after the match as being a strain of his left flexor.
Exams will take place in the next few hours but Milan are already worried. Ruben Loftus-Cheek also left the field due to physical problems but then reassured everyone on Instagram that it was ‘only cramp’.
There were a few positive things that came out of the performance, starting with the fact that Milan absolutely dominated the game pretty much throughout. Newcastle – returning to the Champions League after 20 years – were poor and their only shot on goal came in the 95th minute.
The attacking phase was good for the Rossoneri although still not as well-oiled as in August and not very clinical in the last few metres, which are of course the decisive ones.
The defensive phase was also good with Fikayo Tomori putting in the most positive performance of his season, returning to the field after his suspension.
Marco Sportiello made a great save at the end, while the arrivals of Alessandro Florenzi and Yunus Musah were also positive. In short, drawing at home in a group like this is perhaps not ideal but mentally Milan seemed to take a step forward.