AC Milan managed to claim all three points from the clash against Lecce last night, putting four goals past their former goalkeeper Gabriel. Although there were some struggles, it was important for the Rossoneri to start the resumption with a win, given how important the season finale will be.
Stefano Pioli will be delighted with the performance as Milan’s main struggle this season has been the scoring and even without Zlatan Ibrahimovic, they managed to rise to the occasion. Better yet, there were four different goalscorers and Ante Rebic got his revenge from the Juve clash by scoring the third.
As mentioned, however, the Rossoneri struggled at times and there will be things to work on for the manager. Lecce had more than one chance to add to their tally but Milan luckily escaped, eventually putting the game to bed. Down below are the tops and flops of Pioli’s side.
Hakan Calhanoglu: The Turk was behind everything last night, adding two assists to his name and setting up the other two goals. At times, he perhaps could have done a bit better but was decisive and composed at the right time, certainly earning the man of the match award.
The midfielder has been the subject of heavy criticism in recent months, dividing the Milan fanbase. His performance last night was the best possible response to that, showing that he can be of value for the team during the season finale as well as next campaign.
Franck Kessie: As Bennacer was awfully quiet, which we will get to down below, the Ivorian was forced to lead the Rossoneri midfield and did so very well. Using his strength and stamina, he was able to close down the opponents and win back the ball several times.
Although he wasn’t as active as his colleague in terms of building the play, he managed to carry out his duties and a little more to cover for Bennacer’s relative absence. Overall, a good performance from the midfielder that leaves hope for the future.
Honourable mention – Simon Kjaer: The centre-back did really well before he had to leave the pitch in the 40th minute due to an injury. In addition to closing down the opposition, he also fired several accurate longballs to the attackers and once again showed that he can do a good job for the team.
Ismael Bennacer: As mentioned, the Algerian didn’t live up to the expectations and was a ghost for most of the game. Usually, he directs the play and sets up his teammate, but we saw little of that yesterday. Furthermore, he made several mistakes and looked very raw in general, often finding himself out of position.
Towards the end of the first half, he made a big mistake that nearly resulted in an early equaliser for the home side. Heading a longball towards his own goal, Bennacer gifted Gianluca Lapadula with a one-on-one against Gigio Donnarumma. Fortunately, the striker just missed the chance and spared the No.4 the blushes.
Theo Hernandez: His performance was similar to that of Bennacer, although he didn’t make many mistakes besides being out of position at times. Considering how important he has been for Milan, we expected more from him throughout the game, especially when going forward.
The Frenchman didn’t play against Juventus due to suspension but still looked tired in the final minutes last night. Perhaps he was just trying to slow down the tempo, as Milan had already secured the three points, but it wasn’t a good look on him.
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