After a disastrous spell in the league, during which they haven’t won in four games, AC Milan are gearing up to face SPAL on Saturday evening. This will be the decisive test for Gattuso, who’s currently on the brink.
Not only have the Rossoneri failed to win in these games, but they’ve also failed to score. In fact, Gattuso’s men have failed to find the back of the net in their last four successive Serie A games, which is their joint-worst run since 1930 (six games). In other words, you could certainly say that the team is experiencing a crisis, as the top four is slowly slipping away.
Luckily for Milan, though, their rivals haven’t done too good either as of late, which certainly helps limit the consequences of their poor run. The Rossoneri are just three points off the fourth spot, although the draw against Frosinone saw them move down to sixth place. Therefore, at the moment, it’s not just a race between Milan and Lazio, but also with Sampdoria. Since the latter will face Juventus away from home on Saturday, the order could be restored, that is if Milan get their first win in four games.
It looks like Gattuso will rely on consistency against SPAL, as it could be the first time that he fields the same starting eleven twice in a row since the third round, when they played Roma and Cagliari. However, there is one question mark. Suso was originally ruled out for the game, but appeared on the squad list earlier today. It’s not expected that he will be risked, although it shouldn’t be ruled out either.
AC Milan (4-3-3): Donnarumma; Calabria, Musacchio, Romagnoli, Rodriguez; Kessiè, Bakayoko, Calhanoglu; Castillejo, Higuain, Cutrone.
Andrea Conti made his comeback against Fiorentina last weekend and also played 16 minutes against Frosinone on Wednesday. Despite a bright impact, he’s not quite ready to start, as was revealed by Gattuso during today’s press conference. As said, though, he looked to be in good shape, offering something else to the Rossoneri attack.
“I want to see 23 determined players tomorrow, how we win does not matter to me, what matters is the final result,” Gattuso stated during today’s press conference.
After reports suggested that the 40-year-old would need a convincing display in order to keep his job, this certainly hints at the opposite. Perhaps, Maldini and Leonardo have decided that Gattuso is the right man for the job, although there were moments it seemed sacking was the only option.
In any case, Milan will need to put an end to their goal drought, as three points are absolutely crucial in order to stay within the top four teams. Should the Rossoneri not make top four this season, then that will have many consequences ahead of next season. Leonardo revealed that the redemptions of Bakayoko and Higuain are dependant on Champions League qualification, which means that the players really need to step up.
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