Non-existent defence and misfiring attack: The worrying numbers behind AC Milan’s 2023

By Oliver Fisher -

AC Milan’s start to 2023 has been nothing short of disastrous, and the numbers show how the team are struggling in virtually all areas.

Milan have won just one of their opening six games to begin the calendar year and they are currently on a run of five matches without a win across all competitions. The victory against Salernitana started things on the right foot, but since then it has been all downhill.

Stefano Pioli’s men led 2-0 with 86 minutes on the board against Roma but threw it away as Ibanez and Abraham scored, leaving two points on the table. Then, a Coppa Italia exit to Torino followed where Milan not only didn’t score in 120 minutes, but lost 1-0 to an opponent who played from 70 minutes onwards with 10 men.

Against Lecce an awful first half left a mountain to climb though eventually resulted in a 2-2 draw, and then a 3-0 Supercoppa Italiana defeat to Inter in Saudi Arabia was followed by an even more embarrassing 4-0 loss to Lazio last night at the Olimpico.

Milan have now not kept a clean sheet since November 8, which was a game that they didn’t even win as they drew 0-0 against Cremonese away. The last clean sheet victory was six days prior against RB Salzburg in the Champions League (4-0), but in the league it was on October 8 against Juventus (2-0).

The Rossoneri have let in 13 goals in six games so far in 2023 at an average of over two per games, and they have conceded seven goals without reply over their last 180 minutes of action.

Moreover, in the games in Lecce, Riyadh and Rome, Milan found themselves 2-0 down at half-time in each having conceded an early goal. The own goal by Theo Hernandez at the Via del Mare arrived in the 3rd minute, Dimarco’s goal in the Supercoppa came in the 10th and Milinkovic-Savic’s yesterday was inside five minutes.

Milan are now officially on their longest winless run since Pioli took over, and last night they conceded four goals in a league game without scoring for the first time since early in his tenure, namely the 5-0 defeat against Atalanta in Bergamo.

The defensive unit are collectively failing, but also the attacking department have a lot to answer for. Aside from Leao who has a couple of goals this year (but has been anonymous at times too), all the others are struggling.

Olivier Giroud now has not scored since the Spezia home game in November, his longest run without a goal since joining Milan. Meanwhile, Charles De Ketelaere remains stuck on zero goals, Brahim Diaz cannot put a run of good games together and any contribution from the right side is non-existent.

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