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Posted by Matteo Bonetti on 04/03/2012

Let me first get the most important sentiment off my chest: Barcelona did not steal this game in the sense that they didn't deserve it, rather had an inept referee gift them an opportunity that they clearly did not need. They are the best team in the world, had many more chances than Milan, and generally are about as unstoppable as an asteroid the size of one of Bobo Vieri's boobs shooting towards the earth at a high rate of speed.

The last thing I want to debate is who deserved what, which penalties should or shouldn't have been awarded, and most importantly - does the controversial call against Nesta cancel out the penalty Barcelona should've had in the first game. I couldn't care less about that garbage now as it's banal talk. Milan are going back home to focus on winning the Scudetto, and may Barcelona meet Real Madrid in the final so casual bandwagon fans all over the world can rejoice with their collective erections for Clasico Fever.

We can sit here and play the blame game. Blame the injuries. Blame the referee. Blame the San Siro pitch. Blame Melissa Satta for having sex with Boateng too much. Blame the doctor in Atlanta who said Pato was in 'perfectly good health'. Blame Allegri and his frown. Blame Messi for his superhuman ability. But let's just blame Ibrahim Ba, for the hell of it.
Tuesday's match was yet another emphatic statement that the equilibrium in football is vastly disproportional. It's safe to say 15 out of the best 20 players in the world are on two different teams. Really, Barcelona are in another stratosphere. The fact that they can replace an injured Xavi with a FOURTH choice creative midfielder like Thiago Alcantara says everything you need to know about their impressive depth. Milan just had the misfortune of meeting the Martians right away, but in the grand scheme of things, does it even matter? Wouldn't it have been more painful anyway to lose against the band of elves in the semi-finals?

Two legends ©AP

Random Notes

- It's unfortunate that yet another culling off the old guard will take place this summer. Seeing Seedorf, Ambrosini, and Nesta on the pitch playing at such a high level against the best team in the world is a breath of fresh air, and reminds me of the times when we were actually a likable team. I like to think that the arrival of Ibrahimovic started the new trend of 'Inter face' players coming to the Rossoneri. Alessandro Nesta, at age 36, was monumental today. Ambrosini was valiant in his pursuit of men nearly half his age and twice his speed. Also, we must not forget the somber exit of Seedorf, who has most likely played his last Champions League match for Milan. It's rather unfortunate that such class individuals are being replaced by a new generation of overly petulant and arrogant players, seemingly more concerned with the appearance of their perfectly gelled hair prematch than anything else. This issue has been bothering me plenty - the fact we've become such a volatile side with plenty of unlikable players. What happened to the Milan I grew up adoring? I miss the Maldini's, Kaka's, Shevchenko's, Inzaghi's, Costacurta's, Cafu's. The classy sides that perfectly resembled the storied history of the club, and the image it was trying to exude on the public.

- For Barbara's sake, I hope Pato lasts more in bed than he does on the pitch. What we saw today was another botched mismanagement of injured players by Allegri, clearly putting too much trust into the Atlanta based Doctor that visited with Pato earlier in the week and said Alexandre was in perfect working order. Saying Pato is in perfect working order is like saying Andrea Masiello is an honest young man. More than anything, how does a player comically enter the match only to be taken off five minutes later? The Pato Corollary has become a form of unintentional comedy of the highest order. Unfortunately, it seems Pato's net worth has gone from €38m a few months ago, to the €199.99 Hospital visit he now requires twice a week.

- As I said earlier on twitter, I'm going to continue talking about the highly unpopular topic that most of you are vastly overrating Antonio Nocerino. Even though he did score the goal today, and his form in the Serie A is unquestionably surprising, he is a player with modest skills who seems out of his element in Europe. Now don't get me wrong, he is a perfect fit for the Serie A grind, but in Europe makes too many costly errors with his often diabolical passing that ends up in a deadly counter attack for the opposing side. Why is Nocerino untouchable? Sometimes we create these mythical cartoons out of players, whether they carry a negative/positive connotation is unique in every case, but the fact of the matter is Nocerino is the direct embodiment of an Allegri type game plan. Plenty of running, little technique. As the coach himself said, "you can't feast on caviar every day. Sometimes you must be content with a ham sandwich."

- Instead of issuing blame to the referee for the final result, we need to put aside bias and come to the realization (rather obvious one) that Milan were outmatched over two legs. The injuries were too much to overcome, Antonini reverted back to being Antonini, and the attack was too inconsistent to cause a significant dent in the questionable Barcelona defense.

With the Champions League out the window, it's time to focus the energies solely on maintaining our slender lead in the Scudetto race. However, this summer will be the most telling of all, and will show if Milan is more committed towards winning a Champions League, or negating past debt.

Blame Ibrahim Ba.


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Posted by Rajat on 04/03/2012

Matteo, think about it. While I agree that Allegri's style of play is strictly workmanlike and against the traditions of the club, don't you think he's only doing it because those are the cards dealt to him. Sure, he made the caviar remark, but I can very easily imagine Galliani whispering the words in his ears. If you want to play like Barca, you need similar players. A midfield of Aquilani, van Bommel and Nocerino (ideal lineup) simply cannot play like one consisting of Xavi, Iniesta and Cesc.

So, Silvio, if you feel like watching a Milan that plays Champagne football, invest in some great grapes. Because, you can't polish a turd - at best, all you get is a very, very shiny turd...

Posted by TitiCanree on 04/03/2012

Wow, this is a good piece. I follow you on twitter and I have to say I was just about to unfollow after your (lets just call them) 'heat of the moment' remarks about refs and conspiracies in favor of Barca. It was unbecoming of a writer I admire. Thank God you corrected and restored your credibility.
Milan was once a wonderful team. While I don't fully blame Allegri for how the team is now, I gotta say his man management IS piss poor.
I also agree with Rajat's comment.

Posted by BJ on 04/03/2012

Thoughts on Abate? I thought he was below average today. Gave away the ball too many times and out of position on Iniesta goal

Posted by Blackhawk on 04/03/2012

'Yawn.' This was Nocerino's first year in the Champs League. And he scored against Braca at the Camp Nou. To attack the guy shows a lack of class - the same lack of class that Matteo showed in attacking the 'new generation of overly petulant and arrogant players'. You need to think about who is being arrogant.

Posted by Matteo Bonetti on 04/04/2012


Tired there, buddy?

It's not attacking a player. It's being a realist. It's being unbiased. Simple as that. Dozens of people who have been watching Milan for decades agree with the Nocerino bit. I'm voicing their sentiments. Not only about Nocerino, but about the newer acquisitions in general.

Posted by iwc24 on 04/04/2012

completely agree on the new trend of milan players. The reason why i started watching milan was because we had players like maldini, nesta, kaka, sheva, seedorf, pirlo, etc. Players that did not care too much about being flashy or complain at the first sign of trouble. They were class. The players that we have now are kinda prima donnas but what can we do, it's still milan n we should support them. Also i agree on the match. They were too much for us but i feel that we gained lots of respect from the way we played. We ran them close n personally i dont think chelsea is gonna do better. Maybe madrid but we'll see. Also i dont think ibra was a flop in this match. He could have worked harder but for people to say he doesnt show up, it's completely ridiculous. As i recall, c.ronaldo has not shown up in most matched against barca and supposedly he's got more talent but people dont call him a flop. Finally i do think barca get favors in europe even though ironically they dont need it

Posted by Blackhawk on 04/04/2012

'In general'? 'Newer'? Sounds like you are hedging. Name names like you did with Nocerino, otherwise don't bother with the critique.

Posted by Nathaniel on 04/04/2012

Call me a Juventino, but I would really love to see us returning to a solid, defense first classy team. Not in any way am I trying to imply the classiness of Juventus, but I have seen enough of the Ronaldinhos, Borrielos and Mexes's coming through the San Siro of late. We need to return to a classic Italian approach, and try to reestablish ourselves as a professional, established and well organized group in Europe. I would love to see Astori or Ogbonna come in the summer and try and fight Mexes for the starting spot, and perhaps the signing of Balzaretti or Criscito as well. I think highly of Emanuelson and maybe, though doubtful, Erikson could be persuaded to join by Seedorf and the Dutch contingent. Instead of looking towards the fancy Brazilian dancers and the Swedish street fighters, lets go back to our core of Italian class and Dutch teqnique. I hate change and I hope the Milan of Maldini is not gone forever #ForzaMilan

Posted by MGP11 on 04/04/2012

Good article Matteo, I agree with the most of you thoughts, but I think that we all already knew what was going to happen with this Milan, but even although that, we still had illusions about winning to Barcelona, and maybe the cL, but come on how can we win it with this squad, as you said there's a big difference between booth midfields of Barcelona and Milan, hopefully Galliani and Berlu noticed it, and if the good lord have mercy of us they're gonna spend money in some "Milan class" players, and if that doesn't happens we're gonna keep blaming referees and UEFA for the next 5 years.

Posted by kelly on 04/04/2012

@TheMilanGuy, let me start by saying I was also almost unfollowing you on twitter today.. But I think blaming Allegri is very much out of sort. The man can not play player he doesn't have, players who exist in the air, although I felt he should have brought in Maxi Lopez even before he thought about a player who hasn't played for months (Pato). That said, it is obvious that besides Ibra we need another man upfront who can also shoulder the team like we had Sheva and Inzaghi and Crespo at thesame time. The old gaurds have to be replaced with younger blood including Gattuso.. We have to also let Pato go, I don't think Milan does good to him anymore. That said, we should learn to play at high tempo because its been shown in europe that we struggle against teams that play with pace and pass the ball well and that's why we conceed penalties like we get paid for it. Our possession ratio in europe is really really pathetic. This Milan breaks my heart. #ForzaMilano

Posted by tfiks on 04/04/2012

Good article mateo,u think toning we see way maurinho always get mad if madrid play on camp nou,now our team its feel the same,and good team like barcelona no need help by reffree,but if they not get the pinalty then milan will go to semifinal

Posted by Karam Yousif on 04/04/2012


The level of *class* and skill Shev, Kaka, Maldini, Van Bastan etc or supporting players like Gattuso, Pirlo, Seedorf had cannot be said of Nocerino. I totally agree with Matteo here.

Milan fans deserve better. Milan need a savior again to lead them and I was hoping Pato would be it post-Kaka days but alas he's going through his own troubles and it will take time to get back his confidence. He's still only 22... He can make a comeback. Both Kaka and Thiago Silva had issues earlier in their careers but they worked hard and made it. There's still time and I just hope Silvio sticks by him.

As for Ibra, maybe we're a little harsh for putting all this pressure on him? Can we maybe agree that he's not a Kaka or Shev nor does he have a team of Kaka, Pirlo, Seedorf at their prime in MF feeding him passes?... Something to think about.

Posted by yusef on 04/04/2012

Matteo, you describe Nocerino as a player full of running and no technique. Aren't Gattusso and Ambrosini that type? Nocerino just needs some time and he can only get better. You always need an energetic guy full of running in midfield.
As for the summer we need a Worldclass midfielder and worldclass leftback. We also need to add bench players that can create depth in the squad.

Posted by Michael on 04/04/2012

Silvio needs to open his huge wallet. I know Milan had to balance their books, but they should have never let Kaka go. Letting him go really spoke volumes toward their attitude toward winning. They let the face of Milan go to balance their books. Get rid of Pato and get Tevez. Invest in prime defensemen.

Posted by milanforever on 04/04/2012

I usually agree with everything you say, but I have to be very critical of your comments about nocerino. He has been absolutely great this season. He has saved us in many many he doesnt preform well in europe...well you know ill give him that this season because a. this is his first time in europe which really isnt an excuse but who knows maybe it does make him nervous, and b. he has done soo much already for this team that if he rarely has a bad game, then it is acceptable. I'm sry I cannot see your complaint against him. maybe if you clarified? idk...what frustrates me about barcelona is that yes they are the best team in the world and honestly they are the best team I've ever seen play. so why is it that it seems that they have to resort to shenanigans like excessive diving, crowding the ref, and complaining when things dont go their way.yes im aware every team does it, but i have to say barcelona does do it the MOST and a team of their caliber should not be doing it

Posted by Milanista on 04/04/2012

Wow, what's happened to you mate, you've grown up or something lol. Last time it would've been full of complaints about this and that (most of the time it was justified, albeit slightly exaggerated). Anyway, agreed on almost all points. The part on Nocerino, and him being 'vastly overrated', do not forget you were once part of that crew, saying that you'd have him as a starter for the Italian NT. Don't quite agree with your anti-Allegri sentiments. He has his faults, but there is plenty of good he's done in his time at Milan. If you're saying he won't reach Sacchi/Capello/Ancelotti status, then I agree, but perhaps that's also down to personnel at his disposal. In any case, if we do get rid of Allegri, exactly who do we replace him with?

Posted by Anonymous on 04/04/2012

"Barcelowned". That made me burst out laughing. Moving on to more serious matters, congratulations to UEFAlona for another win. Also Matteo, I noticed that this article was quite a bit more cynical than any previous one you've ever written, which goes well with my mood too. I'm not gonna hit out at anyone, but we were robbed tonight, and a lot of people are aware of it.

Posted by Derek on 04/04/2012

I think we glorify Nocerino because he is the only player worth glorifying a the moment. Show me another player currently wearing the Rossoneri that produces consistently. Sure Ibra is the highest scorer in Seria A, but he disappears in matches often watching the play around him. Every game I'm torn between loving and wanting to kill him for lack of effort.

Posted by Calvin on 04/04/2012

Good article for sure.
No need to blame anybody here,i'm sure that either nocerino, antonini, seedorf, ambrosini, pato or ibrahimovic give their best at the pitch. After all we are facing barcelona a team that's "untouchable".
And yes, we need a new player like what we used to have just like Maldini,Costacurta,Boban,Rui Costa, Kaka, or Pirlo. Players that don't think of what shiny gel that they will take. I grew up watching milan from the late 80's so i know what types of player they were compared with what we had now...
Call me a traitor, but i think we need to get a new allenatore. It's time to say ciao, grazie allegri!
Forza Milan!!

Posted by newton Zvoushe on 04/04/2012

Milan made a big mistake by failing to score in there oily pitch.l saw it coming tht they were going to loose nd also there were nowhere in this world where ibra was going to silent the Camp Nou crowd while Messi and company remained silent never.its a done deal nd milan must just buy compititive players on th market as there team is ageing now.all th best next season milan hope u will win th league at least u will hv sopmething to show at the ned

Posted by clalalive on 04/04/2012

Good response piece to the match. Simply changed a barca fan's opinion about Milan fans as I saw quite a lot of them are bemoaning the 'rob', the 'uefalona fix' & the unjust penalty call.

On top of what you summed up, the Milan I saw today is completely different from the one I saw in San Siro. I am not talking about formation. It's the desire demonstrated. It looked to me when Iniesta scored the 3rd goal, Milan surrendered totally. Players defending loosely and the attacking players weren't even pressing (that's the problem we had with Ibrahimovic also), and there wasn't any fire sparkling other than some Prince Boateng forward runs and Antonini putting out fire here and there alone, Seedorf mopping loose ball around the pitch before getting subbed. Other than these players, Milan sleep-walked the second half. It's the responsibility of the coach to prepare the players. But I guess 'this generation' of players are impossible to prep, huh?

Hope you win the Scudetto.

Posted by Matteo Bonetti on 04/04/2012

My comments on Nocerino are as follows: He is a great utility player in the Serie A, and perhaps could be that workman like figure on the Italian National team. I said he COULD alternate roles with Marchisio on NT depending on game situation. i.e. if we're up a goal, stick in Nocerino for cover.

I acknowledge Noce' has saved us on occasions with his bizarre scoring rate, but the only gripe I list here in this article is one of him in Europe, where generally he has been quite sloppy. We can't even begin to compare him to Gattuso, because Rino is a one of a kind type player. Ambrosini in his prime had more technique + fantastic aerial ability. The point is, Nocerino embodies the new look Milan - one that isn't creative in the middle. And quite honestly, that's why we didn't progress against Barcelona.

Posted by Matteo Bonetti on 04/04/2012

However my friends, I'd rather not turn this into a Nocerino discussion because he is just a polkadot in the grand scheme of things.

Posted by Alex on 04/04/2012

"Nocerino is the direct embodiment of an Allegri type game plan. Plenty of running, little technique."
Thank you! For showing me that there's person who agrees with me! Yes the second penalty shouldn't have been given but did you people honestly see us winning? We were one step behind all the time.

Now to Pato. I love the guy, got to be one of my favorite players but this is unreal! Either the doctors don't know anything or he just can't last.
Why I don't want us to sell him? He's the last real purchase that I remember which we didn't get on discount!! But if he's out for over a month again we have to sell him. Though I prefer that we keep him and buy new midfielders!! We shouldn't have to rely on 36 year-old Seedorf and 34-year-old Ambrosini! We should replace them with players that cost more than 3m and can pass! These legends have kept us fighting for long enough and should get the rest they deserve.

Posted by Curva Sud Indonesia on 04/04/2012

Our squad is too old. We should say goodbye to our veteran player. Ibrahimovic had to fix his mentality in Europe. Barca is too strong despite of that penalty. However, they won because of penalty. At least, we can talk a lot on our loyalty, not a penalty. Regard.

Posted by max on 04/04/2012

football is suppose to be different from politics, why is the game changing and people not seeing the beauty and gift it brings at the end of the day.

This match was totally in favour of barcalenoa from the referee down to his whistle, this does not bring out the beauty of the game but kills it. how do you bring out the best in other players and teams when just but favour one team then where is the joy in it.

My thumbs up for you AC Milan for your courageaus performance despite playing against the referee, barcelona and the home crowd.....please UEFA should start looking into this favouritism thing in the cup it will only but kill the glory of the game and the greatest tournament ever in the world the UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE... because it gets bored when you just pick up a movie and without even watching you already know how it ends because you have seen the crew of the cast and they popular actors and actresses.

UEFA save the champions league

Posted by edo on 04/04/2012

They are not the best side of the world and Messi is not superhuman = no header, no foot, no range, no penalty -
when do you all stop writing THE EXACT SAME BULL on so many different websites ??
How can it be then that I vastly favor Real, Real's style, and the current best winger and scorer in the world, Cristiano ?

Posted by Ryan on 04/04/2012

Can't agree more about what is written here... but above all don't you think the 'new generation' lacks the passion and the drive. What differentiates an ambrosini from a robinho is the passion to play for a club like Milan. They are taking their place for granted. No work ethic. Accepted Barca were the better team but they din't take it for granted they fought for every ball, din't make stupid mistakes and ran. We were not only outplayed, we were outclassed....

Posted by Andriy on 04/04/2012

Absolutely agree with Rajat, and agree about Nocerino (too) but i think Noce is improving, just wish for the best.I like this article and agree with it except in one occasion: for me Barcelona players still playing a part to influence the ref that cost Milan the 2nd penalty which was absolutely a disgrace in football! Nesta pulling Busquet shirt, but puyol was fouling Nesta too and they didnt even take that corner kick yet.
plus Sheva disallowed goal in 2006 vs Barca is still haunting me. They're the best club and they might be able to beat us without ref, but still they like to influence the ref to confirm their way to victory

But now im agree, i'll just blame it on Ibrahim Ba

Posted by Rossoneri_Forever on 04/04/2012

It really is sad to see all this criticism on the team. Sure i understand we have our flaws and need to improve on many sectors, but we shouldn't forget everything this team has given us.

Times change. This is just a bad year all around, that we have managed to still be on the top of the league table, even with all the bad calls. Barcelona its just Barcelona. They simply are 10 steps ahead of the game. I really do believe things will turn around.

I don't believe in bashing players completely, although i do agree on some points, but should also not forget all the times that Antonini,Abate,Nocerino,Urby,Pato etc. saved us. I don't think we lose quality, but i do agree we lose class.

I really do believe in us returning to the 'old milan' mode of dominating defensively. I really do think we should invest on our defense more than anything.

We need to be more supportive to the team. We always bounce back.

My two cents.

Posted by DrMhanna on 04/04/2012

Just Blame Ibrahim Ba.

Posted by Kenny on 04/04/2012

Your post brings up the issue of which player does Milan need to buy; it's obvious we really need more creativity in the midfield. Such a player also most importantly shouldn't be too expensive and there aren't many such players in the transfer market in the upcoming season save for one- DIEGO RIBAS!

Posted by Dan on 04/04/2012

Good post. You're bringing up several important points, even though you might make it out to be a bit gloomier than it actually is. Sure, the old guard won't stay for long (and you could really have used Pirlo this season),but this is natural and will in a couple of years make Milan an even stronger side. And since Silvio isn't the president of Italy anymore, he's more likely to invest.

Lastly: Where does all this moaning about referees and diving come from? From what I saw Milan did just as much falling over and complaining to the referee as 'UEFAlona', if not more. Not to mention the two non-called decisions in the first leg. Since when have Milanistas gone crazy over one possibly wrong decision when, overall, they've been slightly favoured?

Posted by zeedeek on 04/04/2012

matteo some of ur arguments are smart ones, but did u take into consideration that we r living in an era that very few champions are emerging and shining or in case there was one, after earning his first millions he fades miserably ? u taking into consideration that in each big club and each league, loads of players used to get the exposure at the age of 24 and last with the same level till their 30's while now they get their hype at the age of 18 and dont last till their 20th birthday.. to make it short, their is no more qty of players for clubs to share, just 24 good ones in 2 harshly in-debt spanish sides, a rare ridiculously overpriced bunch in epl, and few in italy, exactly at milan.. so to make ur thoughts feasible we need to get a samir nasri for 60 millions ? or lure robben for 100 millions with 10 millions as basic salary? i think we r doing fine with our signings similar to bayern, and realistically we cant do better unless mr qatar decide to open an oil refinery in sansiro

Posted by Ryo on 04/04/2012

Well, we lacked creativity in the middle becuz we let Pirlo go? Funny how Berlu wanted Milan to play champagne football yet he complaint about Pirlo's wage bill. MVB injured doesn't help either, as Ambrosini only provide us aerial dominance in the middle. As for Nocerino, he is suppose to be a DM anyway, yet he scored double digit this season already. Defensively I think he have been amazing, and his scoring touch and forward runs should be thought of as bonus? Not to mention he can still grow and improve.

I have been worrying since Maldini retires that we have no successor to the Baresi->Maldini->Nesta heritage. How curcial is Nesta in this match and imagine we have to do without him very soon. Silva is a different type of defender than those 3 italians, his strength lies in his speed.

Still think Allegri will be good for us. Over our 4 matches against Barca we showed we can hold our own against the best. R.M. aren't doing better against Barca than us. I credit Allegri for this

Posted by Dario on 04/04/2012

Good blog, man. I can't help the feeling that when the little dude (Messi) declines and retires and Barcelona hits a trough, we will all miss football. That team is unreal. Thank G we got to witness their awesome game.

Posted by peter eromoseler on 04/04/2012

i think a lot of people seem to forget that the ref denied barca two penalties in the first leg at the san siro.we believe barca should not have any penalties at all because they are great side. lets not forget that rules says a tug on a shirt is a foul.

Posted by peter eromoseler on 04/04/2012

i think a lot of people seem to forget that the ref denied barca two penalties in the first leg at the san siro.we believe barca should not have any penalties at all because they are great side. lets not forget that rules says a tug on a shirt is a foul.

Posted by punditguy on 04/04/2012

In a way...i am happy about our exit from CL. I mean seriously....people really think we could have won CL? Sad to say but thats just fantasy at this point!

I hope Silvio takes note of the difference between us and Barca! U want game like that...then splash the cash!

The only trophy we can really challenge for is Serie A. And that seems to be slipping. We need to win it again this year! And even next season!

Nocerino seems to be shaping into a good player. Its is his 1st taste of CL so i wouldnt be quick to judge him yet.

That duck we have needs to be roasted. Or in my country we curry it!

For those who still dont think we need a player like Tevez please review our CL quater final matches with Barca!

Anotnini was his usual self BUT did anyone else notice that he plays better as a left back rather than on the right? For the past few heroic games he played as a RB! Thats some thing Mr. Max should have noticed.....................

Posted by punditguy on 04/04/2012

As for Mr. Max, despite who ever says what i still think he is doing a great job with Milan. Given that he has to settle for other teams rejected players as watches the cream of the crops gets scooped up by other teams!

So come on Milan and Burlusconi! Win Serie A and please please please god....give our superstitious president some visible sign so he can go on a spending spree!

Posted by pablo on 04/04/2012

I think you'll find neither penalty should have been given, not just the second.
The first came after a deflection off Antonini which went to a player coming back from an offside position (Messi), the flag should've been raised before the tackle was even made.
(unless that was a deliberate passback from Antonini, which although I doubt, I wouldn't put it past him).
Other bad decisions aside (handball Robinho, no penalty Ibra), we deserved to lose.

Anyway, agree with the passion/drive of the players and even more so the technique (there were sloppy moments up front which should have resulted in goals), but you're being overly critical of Ibra. He produced a beautiful assist for our only goal, and made several key passes which opened up Barca's defence. He also wasted very little possession.
I'll agree he doesn't always LOOK like he's trying hard, but when you have less than 40% possession over two legs, you can't exactly do much- as Ronaldo has found out when playing Barcelona.

Posted by igor on 04/04/2012

If Milan had a good, creative player in midfield they might have won the match. Instead, there were two players up front, a huge gap in the middle and everyone else at back, even seedorf and boateng. Milan desperately needs to hire one or two talented midfield players. I don't think nocerino,aquilani or even boateng are good enough (compare them to iniesta-xavi-fabregas; ozil-xabi alonso-kaka; nasri-davi silva- yaya toure; Schweinsteiger-ribery-robben)

Posted by USMilan on 04/04/2012

Matteo good post as always. Insightful as expected but a bit critical considering the team we fielded. When Silva got hurt before the fixtures I knew our chances were slim. Not putting away 1 home goal killed us and may have turned this tie on its head if we had. Not saying would have won but may have been a much closer match and maybe even it seen it through. Yes Barca is the better team that's why they are $400 million USD in debt. A cull of old warriors is needed, that's obvious. A new crop of players i nspecific areas is needed. DO NOT SELL SILVA TO BARCA. But i do have to agree with other posters that it would seem in UCL at least in the last few years Barca get calls that no other team gets or that you rarely see called in such critical games:

2009 Chelsea
2011 Arsenal
2012 Milan
We all know these games and the ridiculous calls or noncalls they got from these matches.

Posted by Anton on 04/04/2012

I was at the Nou Camp and at 1-1 we were matching Barcelona and actually growing in strength and confidence and their defence was looking very shaky.
Then 3 minutes before half time the ref gives a comical penalty which changed the shape of the game. 1-1 at half time would have meant they would have had to come forward and who knows what would have happened had we nicked a second goal before they did ?
I am not for conspiracy theories but after having watched the ref repeatedly give every 50/50 decision to them I am beginning to wonder whether Real's and others claims of favouritism towards Barca may have some substance after all.
For years the rumour was that Juve were fiddling with refs in the Italian Serie A - many dismissed this as rubbish - well we know what happened next.
I know corruption at UEFA and FIFA does not exist ( cough,cough) but has anyone there ever really checked these claims ?
I think with a bit of luck and an unbiased referee we were close to causing an upset

Posted by Grayson on 04/04/2012

Boba Vieri's boobs are not that big. Bad analogy.

Posted by Anyafulu Jude on 04/04/2012

Beautiful game but the ref should look back and wonder why he spoilt a beautiful game. What a waste. Milan still rules.

Posted by NapoliNick on 04/04/2012

No one wants to talk about Mexes, I thought he was the worst player by far on the pitch. Gave the initial ball away stupidly that led to the first PK. Was constantly holding on to the ball too much, and even looking nervous on the ball and misplacing his passes when he did get rid of the ball. I think Abate and perhaps looked a bit subpar because of compensating for Mexes. A true replacement is needed for Nesta to play with Thiago Silva.
Also, once again a big game for Milan and Ibra was largely a spectator. Aside from his beautiful pass to Nocerino, for me he talked to much leading up to the game and failed to back it up on the field.
Lots of positives can be taken from the two legs for some players (Seedorf rolled back the years in the first leg, Robinho looked commited, etc). Now focus and win the league.

Posted by Pars on 04/04/2012


With the exception of your comment on the fact that Barca are a better team than anyone else, I don't agree with any of your assessments. You are way too biased/misinformed/frustrated.

I love Milan - I grew up with the very 'classy' players you mentioned. And that's my point: Sacchi, Cappello, and Carlo had THOSE types of players, so until you give at least 3 of that crop of players to Allegri, your criticism is unfounded. Plus, say you fire him, who would you bring in?

With regards to the game, at 1-1 we would've been through. Period. The second PK was not warranted. At 1-1 it would've also been a different game! And about "giving up", what do people expect? You are playing against such a psychologically dominating team. Look at Madrid players faces when they concede to Barca (even when they are 1-0 up)...and this Madrid are better than this Milan! It all comes down to planning/investing. We need to refresh. Seedorf/Nesta/Ambro are done. Let's move on!

Posted by Pars on 04/04/2012

Also ( don't get me wrong - Allegri has his faults), but he is to Milan what Scolari was to Chelsea. Replacing Carlo was no easy task...especially with the players he had. But Allegri has at least managed to bring in a new philosophy. Last night ALONE I would've taken Pirlo, but that is not how you build a team. Though we SORELY miss Pirlo's class and creativity, we had become way to dependent on him (and our BIGGEST mistake in the summer was not coming up with a decent/not injured replacement). Seedorf and Ambro have been legends, but they played their last best games in 07 (against Man U in the San Siro)...but that's what happens with classy players: they are NOT easily replaceable (let's see how Barca replace Xavi, Iniesta, etc.).

My point: It seems bleak, but it's not that bad. We will learn from this CL experience. I don't think anyone expected us to win it this year. It's BLATANTLY OBVIOUS that we are behind Barca and Real. Give Allegri time and let Silvio start spending again!

Posted by Sam, Jakarta on 04/04/2012

We were beaten by Arsenal on our way to the quarter final so Barca deserved to win as obviously Barca is better than Arsenal. Plain and simple...

Milan I loved was the one with the Dutch trio in the squad...Van Basten, Gullit and Rajkard. They could beat current Barca!

Posted by Milanello on 04/04/2012

Great story Matteo

I agree milan should buy some younger players who have some experience in the BIG games someone like erikkson would be a wise buy and we need to buy some good centre backs who have speed but also some skill the barca game is now in the past but now milan need to think of the future and not rely on players like seedorf, ambrosini, nesta to get the job done some money needs to be spent ans some players need to offloaded for the better of this club i love milan FORZA

Posted by Pagliuca on 04/05/2012

Good article but in the grand scheme of things, its natural that Barca will dominate, keep possession, and play fluid football. Given our injuries this year, lack of a quality mercato(been saying this for how long now??). I think we were great against this Barca. After watching both legs, I didn't see Barca "dominte" us unlike other teams. Milan matched them and played football, also despite the ratings saying we had 30% of the ball we were more in the 40% range, in other words even with Barca. All Barca has are the quick triangle passing to each other. Show me where they were beating up and making our defenders look like kids? Didn't happen. Allegri? Mixed feelings for him. He likes to have those "workers" in MF rather than "artists" but the worker got it done. However, if he would of had a creative MF, things would have been very different. In other words, have all the incontristi you want. Just give me Kaka and things will change very quicktly. Forza Milan

Posted by Ligpa on 04/05/2012

Sad... but Damn Refreee changed the entire game. it's not a beautiful game anymore.

Posted by erik on 04/05/2012

looked up the rules on the 2nd penalty. says that if a ball is not in play only a misconduct violation can occur (these are fouls but treated differently). it also says that a ball is not in play until it has been touched, and has rolled... the replay shows the shirt pull with the ball at the corner. no penalty, not because it is soft... but because those are the rules of the game. check out the rules yourself. i believe they are law 8 and then look at direct kicks where u will find penalties

Posted by improbableTRIUMPH on 04/05/2012

Random Feedback

-This is one of the best pieces I've read on Soccernet in months. I'll have to start following your work.

-Although I support Barcelona, the second penalty call made me unhappy.

-In addition to the hair gel, don't forget the need to have the prettiest boots and most noticeable tattoos. I have nothing against style, but I wish kids watching football had more role models than underwear models to emulate. Here's to the classy, hardworking professionals you mentioned.

-Gareth Bale, Alejandro Faurlin and Jan Vertonghen would all be interesting additions to Milan this summer.

Posted by Zomo on 04/05/2012

Pars, I agree with you 100%. This is no time for self pity. The players we have have given all they had in my opinion, and might have even over-achieved given the injuries we had to deal with.
I'm proud that the best team in the world has to rely on bad calls to beat us.

Posted by Zyler on 04/05/2012

Matteo, is it a surprise to you to see where we are at the moment? One and a little over a half a season ago, we were a team in transition. Even after our acquisition of Ibra, Binho, Boateng's emergence and our subsequent Scudetto triumph, doesn't it still feel like our team is still in transition?

Posted by MilanDubai on 04/05/2012

Matteo, I liked your article and I am glad you didn't make too much of the penalty; I think I am the only Milanista who feels it was warranted. Nesta had a fistful of shirt from the get go and at no point was he trying to stop the movement of the opposing player legally, it is not a penalty tat will be called in most situations (read: Mesbah), but it should be, all the shirt pulling on corners is bloody ridiculous and I think more refs should have the balls to call penalties like this.

I will second Napoli Nick in his estimation of Mexes, I thought he was disastrously bad! For such an experience player to misplace so many passes in dangerous areas, be out of position and just play all around horribly is truly disappointing.I was expecting more from him as a Milan player but he can be added to the long list of recent defensive flops (Taiwo, Papashthhtahshththathsthathstlos, Yepes) to be bought by Milan.

Posted by ezekiel iwaolem on 04/05/2012

Now I know why mourinho is always complaining each time he goes to nou camp. Uefa is spoiling this game and if something is not done I am afraid what will happen next. I think milan needs a magician in the midfield. Forza milan

Posted by MilanDubai on 04/05/2012

Why is it that we are no longer getting superb defenders coming up from our own school of football? Our recent products have been Abate, Antonini? Really?? Where is the next Baresi, Maldini, Milan through and through? Silva is fantastic, but if it goes forward like this he will leave soon as well.

Up front I was disappointed by everyone, Ibra moaning too much, Prince invisible for the second game, Robinho's misses costing us dearly again, Pato and Maxi nul points. I think El Shaarawy should have been put in earlier, that kid has a real future and needs to get into these games.

Midfielders were full of effort, but too slow and no ideas. Nocerino I think is a very good replacement for Rino who is spent, but we need some creativity in there.

Overall, the English commentator got it right, "Milan did as well as they could considering the gap in class between the two sides". Now let's at least get the Scudetto!

Posted by I.Nace on 04/05/2012

Wow, Matteo!
I am a big Arsenal fan, but it's an amazing article. Yes I agree Milan was a great team. Only this Barca and the great Ajax could surpass that. I am not a fan of Italian football, but yes This Milan is past date. What ever the cicumstances, yes Barca totally deserved to go through, though they are showing some frailties in the back, they are great team to watch and one can't help but admire their football, no matter what team one supports. Be fans, but enjoy the beautiful game of soccer.

Posted by Ali on 04/05/2012

Good piece there, unbiased. I really thought we could overcome Barcelona when we drew them. But we just don't have the players. No matter what anyone says, I think it's clear now that Ibra is only a Serie A player. Think about it, he has only been successful in Serie A. If we are to make him better, we need a good supplier of the ball.

That's what Milan need most. We used to have Pirlo and Kaka to give those 'KILLER' balls to striker, which made scoring so easy, but watching Milan's plays nowadays, it's fair to say, they've run out of ideas. Milan have ABSOLUTELY no creativity in their midfield. Those midfielders are just muscles that know how to hang on to the ball, they don't know how to assist the strikers, it's not in any of their nature.

I know it's Allegri's system, but you've got to change it sometimes to get results, if we are to be the best in Europe once again, WE NEED A PLAYMAKER and selling KAKA and PIRLO was the biggest mistake Milan could've ever made.


Posted by Matteo Bonetti on 04/05/2012


So what you're saying is that with the current transfer policy it is impossible to bring in classy players who could exude the class of the organization?

Also, please elaborate on the 'too biased' bit, as it seems to be the most ill-fitting word you could have come up with to describe my distance in the article. Clearly, you wanted an article where I cry about the referees. And sure, we could've went through if it was 1-1, but 60 minutes were still remaining! Barcelona had how many more opportunities? Milan had how many shots on goal? 3 total? To Barcelona's 27?

Get real.

If anything, I was urging the sentiments of most fans I know. It hurts to hear the truth sometimes, and realism is misconstrued as 'bashing' or 'pessimism' because most fans simply do not want to be exposed to the blunt reality of the matter.

Posted by Ryo on 04/05/2012

MVB-Nocerino-Seedorf-Boateng is definitely better than "nasri-davi silva- yaya toure", though half of them is reaching expiry.

For those of you who still think Nocerino is not good enough, just compare him to Gattuso. Remember the 3 goals a season bet Gattuso have with Ancelotti and lost? Nocerino is already in double digit this season. There are not too many midfielder who an score double digit in a season. Those can are top players. At the very least, Nocerino is a sufficient long term replacement for Gattuso, if not better. Can't blame Nocerino when he is field with Ambrosini instead of MVB. What happen when Ambrosini replaces Pirlo to play alongside Gattuso back in their prime days?

If only we could field a diamond of MVB-Nocerino-Pirlo-Boateng this season...

Lets just hope we don't see Gattuso or Ambrosini to partner Nocerino in the starting XI next season.

Posted by sal on 04/05/2012


I read what you replied to "Pars" and I cannot stand the shots argument (I can't say I agree with all of Pars' points). They had 21 shots... I repeat 21 SHOTS. 8 of the 21 were on target and maybe a couple more were close (sorry for being vague there). Milan had 3 shots with 1 on target. Barca dominated us, right? They did... They scored just as many goals as we did though. We scored 1 in open play that we created and they scored a scrappy lucky goal.

Am I saying that Barca couldn't have just kicked it into another gear and put it away... No i'm not but don't put Milan down. The team is crippled and if they have to play a defensive style against the best team in the world and win in an ugly way then so be it!

@Zomo I agree.. we scored a goal and played they way we needed to and they relied on 2 penalties and a lucky bounce. FORZA MILAN PER SEMPRE!

Posted by punditguy on 04/05/2012


I agree with PARS on Allegri. I think what he is trying to say is that your comparing Allegri with Sacchi, Capello and Ancelloti. But what di all these coaches had.....they had "Classy Players". They phenomenal players who can change a game in a second! Allegri doesnt! He has to work with what is given to him! He wanted Gareth Bale or Fabregas......he got Aquiliani, Nocerino and Muntari. He wanted Tevez....he got Lopez.

On numerous occasions you bashed Milan's tranfer policies but yet you Bash Allegri for so many things. I think its a bit unfair that you give him such a hard time. After all the guy did help us win Serie A in his 1st season in charge. Milan should hold on to him give him the players he wants. And if he doesnt deliver, then let him go.

Posted by AC on 04/05/2012

Can anyone explain to me why Messi wasn't offside on the first penalty?

Posted by Matteo Bonetti on 04/05/2012


Always good to hear your feedback as you've always been a respectful poster for more than a year now

However I don't think I "bash" Allegri without warrant. Let's not even talk about his dramatic mismanagement of players: (Pato, Boateng, Silva) which ultimately might have cost us the Champions league, since even he admitted it was HIS fault Silva reaggravated an injury.

Allegri SHOULD win the Scudetto. He has no excuses. He has the best team, with the most depth. Simple as that.

However, last year we bowed out to an inferior Tottenham side. This year we nearly threw away a 4-0 LEAD against Arsenal in HISTORIC fashion as Allegri obviously failed to motivate the players in what would have gone down as the most embarrassing loss for Milan, worse than the 4-1 Deportivo Comeback!

Still have plenty of doubts about Allegri being the right manager for the club.

But that's just my humble opinion.

Posted by Pars on 04/05/2012


Let's get one thing straight: we both LOVE Milan - fine, you love them MORE!

But, the points you raise are all based on "sentiments" (hence "biased"). If you want to analyze/critique a coach/team/player you have to be objective! I'm not saying Barca wouldn't have "kicked into 2nd gear"...they probably would've! But to do that, they need to spread and open up the play, allowing us the counter (THIS is why at 1-1 the game would've been COMPLETELY different). Had that happened, would it have been nice? Hell no! But, you don't always need to play nice to win a CL. I'm sure Inter don't mind having a CL based on not the most beautiful football, and I don't think Milanisti would've minded CL #8, regardless of how it came!!! Do we lack creativity in mid, hell yes! That's why I said Pirlo was "sorely missed". Did I say we can't afford "classy players"?? NO! But how is that Allegri's fault, is beyond me!

Posted by Pars on 04/05/2012

As for Allegri's treatment of players, if anything he has been able to manage a bunch of highly egotistical knobs (look at Mancini at City - and he only has Mario and Tevez to deal with). Are you seriously blaming the injuries on Allegri?? If he doesn't play Boateng/Silva he'll get crucified, and if he does, he has mismanaged them (Pato is completely irrelevant - no Milan fan would blame Allegri for Pato's injuries). Besides, even when Pato's been fit, he has been way sub par (ref. the Derby). I don't think Allegri is against creativity in midfield; he definitely expects more running from the midfielders (something you ABSOLUTELY need if you want to stop Barca/Real - even their mids CONSTANTLY run!!). BUT, again, look at the players Allegri has. They replaced Pirlo with Aquaman! That in itself is an atrocity! Aqua, when fit, is a decent player, but he is NO PIRLO. But if we are to blame Allegri for that, let's blame him for the next tsunami too, seeing as how much control he has!

Posted by Pars on 04/05/2012

How on earth can you belittle the crippling effect injuries have had on our season? Juve, with ALL their MIGHT (sarcasm), play only once a week, and STILL manage to rack up 14 draws. Our team has been horrendously decimated with injuries. Our injured players alone could compete for the Scudetto! I can't remember the last time Allegri had a FULLY FIT squad at his disposal this season. And you still think Allegri's "dramatic mismanagement" cost us the CL? Aren't you being a bit self-contradictory? I thought you were making the point that Barca were waaay better than us, regardless of the "crying" for the penalties!! The Arsenal tie, was Allegri's fault, and I think he learned from it (the same way he learned from the 2-0 to Cesena last season).

Posted by Pars on 04/05/2012

Finally, you seem keen on letting Allegri go (your's and apparently "other Milan fans'" opinion)...and I have posed this question multiple times: Who would you bring instead? AVB? Delneri? Ferrara? Ranieri? Jose? Hiddink? van Basten? Rijkaard? Leonardo? You pick, and we can discuss it! We all know how AMAZING each and everyone of the above are (and oh just how beautiful Jose plays his teams against Barca). It's one thing to criticize a coach/team, it's another coming up with a solution/alternative!

I never said Allegri is perfect, I say give him half the players Saachi/Cappello/Carlo had...and then give him time! You need stability in a club: it's called PLANNING. This very Barca Club won NOTHING for 14 YEARS in Europe! SAF won NOTHING in Europe for 13 YEARS! We have hit a drought of 5 years (years where we have done NOTHING to build), and you find Allegri as the scapegoat? Our very beloved Saachi took 3 years to win the CL!

Forever Forza Milan!

Posted by Andy on 04/06/2012

Is it just me or am I the only one that realizes that with the current state of Milan, we played the way we were suppose to. Milan could not risk advancing and getting blown away on the counterattack, which is what would have happened with slow players on the field like Ambro, Seedorf, etc. (although they played well). The fact is that Barca could not score on a defense that was fielding Antonini and Bonera for goodness sake, and NO SILVA. This is the best team in the world? sure doesnt look like it at times. Yes, Milan were outplayed, but instances like this where a ref gives not one, but TWO PENALTIES (whether deserved or not), the moral of players drop very low. they have the mentality that every little thing will result in a foul, thus playing much more conservative defense, which led to Iniesta's goal, as well as the need for us to push on to get an equalizer. Barca is Barca. they will always be favored by UEFA. regardless of the result, im still proud to be a Milanista.

Posted by RoOonaldinho_Milan on 04/06/2012

milan needs some players screw old players we need an injection of young players

Posted by Sal on 04/06/2012


After reading your reply to Punditguy it reminded me why I started reading your blog in the first place. You're right about Allegri misplaying Silva, Boateng, and especially Pato.
Honestly dude everyone's taking their frustrations out on you. It was a bad loss. BUT I do have to say paying 500k for Nocerino and being able now to sell him for at least 4 mil is pretty good in my book.

Matteo Bonetti is a SAINT!

Posted by Milanoo on 04/06/2012

Good Article Matteo

After your blog i wondered whether milan will ever buy someone that has high standards like errikson or a fast paced player people like pato need to a good environment to grow and we need to sell van bommel, sedorf, ambrosini, inzagi and other slackers who arent fast or at the prime anymore and buy young we need an champions leugue trophy and overcome rivals like juventus and inter with lots of ease

Posted by Ryo on 04/06/2012

Honestly though, give Allegri some credit. Even the mighty Ancelotti squad only got us one Scudetto. We were great in Europe back then but never consistent enough in the league. Maybe Allegri will never deliver in Europe, but he give us a consistency in the league that even the great Ancelotti can not achieve.

At the start of this season, we begin as bad as Inter, but we have a great recovery thanks to Allegri. We should not take the Scudetto Allegri won us for granted.

Other than Mourinho, I'm not sure if any manager can bring us more than Allegri did.

Posted by Ivan on 04/07/2012

Dear Matteo

Love ur blog as usual, i agree with ur analysis. I already realistic before the match and know what will happen.

I am Milan fans since 1988 from Indonesia, love to see the Dutch trio play at Milan, make me fall in love with Milan team and make me a rossoneri fans. Glad have opportunity watch the legendary Milan in 1990s.

After that we have dark period. Make me very sad when to see the Milan team when become very mediocare team.

The euforia come back when we have Kaka, Sheva and the others, after its pass, now we do not have strong squad to compete in CL to face the legendary Barcelona, now its their prime, they have incredible players and I know we simply don't match them even with Ibra, Boateng, Robinho and the others, but in Serie A, I hope Milan secure the scudeto.

I don't like Allegri (especially policy to play old players) but we don't have anyone candidate right now as a coach if he leave, so I will support him anyway.

Forza MILAN! Milan will rise again!

Posted by Dery Kofi on 04/07/2012

people can say whatever they want but barcelona is the best team in the world with the most fantastic players one can think of.

Posted by Mark from Florida, USA on 04/08/2012

Ok, I am a bandwagoner. But only for two players. One is Ibra. That said, I am a huge Milan fan because they have Ibrahimovic. He's a soccer god! He's the only reason Milan has won the championship last go round, and more than likely, this time too. In Europe, what is he going to do when surrounded by the likes of Robinho, Maxi Lopez, and the ghost of Pato? And yes, get rid of the old guard. Retire Seedorf, Nesta(only in europe), Ambrosini, Gattuso and anyone else that can't hack it anymore. It's about winning trophies. Style of play has changed. Buy more Mercenaries like Ibra. Forget Tevez tho. Win the Champions League, bring glory back to Italy, and give Inter the finger. Can I get an amen?

Posted by Milan 1963 on 04/08/2012

Interesting article as always and interesting comments from everyone. I am probably the older Milan bandwagoner here as I have been supporting them since 1968 or something....on those days we had the class of Gianni Rivera my first Milan idol....anyway what I just want to say is that in all these years I have seen my beloved colors raise to the top and go down to the purgatory of serie B. I have leaved moments of pure joy and moments of anger and embarrassment. But A.C. Milan is part of those teams that whatever happens will always rise to the challenge and be part of football history. this year we are fighting for the scudetto with Juve and we got eliminated by Barca in CL in quarter finals. It is not bad I would say and trust me the team is still in transition, Nocerino is to me better than Gattuso ever was but yes we need the son of Maldini to grow faster and come replace his father and we need more creativity in midfield.

Posted by Milan 1963 on 04/08/2012

I am confident we will get those players, Milan is a classy team and will always attract talent. Now it is time for Mr. President to take matter on hand and see to it that we will soon be contenders not only for the scudetto but also for his beloved CL.
ciao a tutti e FORZA MILAN....

Posted by punditguy on 04/10/2012

@MATTEO...thank you for you reply.

I agree with what you have told me. And YES he SHOULD win Serie A. If he doesnt then he should go. However, as for CL. With the team we had from last season and this season....I dont think it was possible for us to win CL. Not with this team.

I am happy (IF) we win Serie A this season and next season more than if we win CL. And i think for this he is good for that.

And i admit. You are right about when it comes to CL and motivation. When you look at the stats for this season...we have not won against any of the top 4teams in Serie A. We have been knocked out of CL Tottenham and have some how almost managed to been humiliatingly give up and 4-0 advantage against Arsenal! And also bad management with players injuries you are right. This is all true.

But i still think he's doing a good job. He really needs better options on the field. If we do managed to sign some quality players where we need and he fails next season...then he should go!

Posted by punditguy on 04/12/2012

Whats the deal with this Muriel kid? I have not seen him play or hear much about him either. Can any one shed some light on these latest rumors and on this kid...?

Posted by kelon on 04/12/2012

gud to hear from u matteo,lets hope the injuries cease an see how we fare in europe nex yr

Posted by Kool Milan FAN on 04/12/2012

I Perfectly understand the Idea towards "The ICONIC Milan PLAYER" The players we Knew that Loved the MILAN Jersey! One Player who i am sure will stir up tons of Debate is Balotelli! I know he needs to get his act Together but if theres one Team that he Would put his Blood and sweat for, it would be Milan! not to mention he could use the wisdom of players like Cassano,Ibra,Gattuso and perhaps seedorf to keep his head Straight.

as for Midfield i find it difficult to Believe that signing of players with average skill levels: Montelivo, Muntari, Etc.. will push us towards the next step which is the Champions league cup once again! Hopefully we get Ganso or a serious young playmaker with a bright future similiar to our once great "MILANESE KAKA"

I still hold really High Expectations from our youth players like El Sharawway, Merkel, Abate and Urby (who knows what D adiyah and R strasser can do!) as long as they stay away from the milan injury curse

what do you think matteo?

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Matteo Bonetti Born and raised just a few kilometers away from The San Siro, Matteo Bonetti has been watching the Rossoneri ever since childhood. The passion was instilled by a family whose fanaticism for the team dates back to the early 1900's. Instead of bursting with an obscenity laden tirade, or turning any object around him into a projectile weapon after a disappointing Milan outing, Matteo can now channel his emotions into a more effective, and most importantly: safe, manner - writing on a global platform. He is a young journalist whose grandfather was the Vice President of Milan nearly four decades ago. E-mail him:, and follow him on twitter: @TheMilanGuy

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