Bonucci: “Lazio defeat a healthy slap in the face, our problem was mostly psychological, Milan have to improve”

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Leonardo Bonucci during Lazio-Milan at Stadio Olimpico on the 10th of September, 2017. (@acmilan.com)
Leonardo Bonucci during Lazio-Milan at Stadio Olimpico on the 10th of September, 2017. (@acmilan.com)

Leonardo Bonucci said Milan did not give 100% against Lazio but claimed the 4-1 loss is a valuable lesson for the future.

Milan lost their defeat match of the season on Sunday and it was a big one as they were defeated by Lazio 4-1 at Stadio Olimpico, with a Ciro Immobile hat-trick.

The Rossoneri received a lot of criticism from fans and pundits and while most of the fire went towards coach Vincenzo Montella, captain Leonardo Bonucci was also heavily criticized; in fact, he was picked the worst player on the pitch by this morning’s edition of La Gazzetta dello Sport.

“This mustn’t change our ambitions, but it should serve as a valuable lesson,” the 30-year-old Bonucci told Premium Sport after the final whistle yesterday. “We should’ve been a team unit throughout the game, but that penalty made us crumble. We need to improve in the details. I think we ought to treat this defeat as a healthy slap in the face for everyone. We didn’t have the conviction that we’d hurt Lazio and so when they scored on their first opportunity, it knocked the wind out of our sails.

Leonardo Bonucci and Ciro Immobile during Lazio-Milan at Stadio Olimpico on the 10th of September, 2017. (Photo by Paolo Bruno/Getty Images)
Leonardo Bonucci and Ciro Immobile during Lazio-Milan at Stadio Olimpico on the 10th of September, 2017. (Photo by Paolo Bruno/Getty Images)

“Criticism? We weren’t phenomenal before this game and we are not disasters after it [Milan currently have 6 points out of 9]. It’s true we must work to become more of a team unit, to sacrifice ourselves for the whole and always give 100 per cent. In Serie A and Europe, 99 per cent is just not enough.

“The way I see it, defending begins when the opposition first get the ball, it must be done together with aggression – that is what we’re currently missing. It was utopian to think that we’d be a tested super squad working like clockwork from the first day. We must win back balls with malice.

“We have to improve in many areas, enjoy keeping clean sheets and sacrifice ourselves for the team. That isn’t happening. The exchange with Immobile after the game [they were caught arguing]? Some things happened with Immobile, but they were on the pitch and remain on the pitch.”

Leonardo Bonucci and Gianluigi Donnarumma during Lazio-Milan at Stadio Olimpico on the 10th of September, 2017. (@acmilan.com)
Leonardo Bonucci and Gianluigi Donnarumma during Lazio-Milan at Stadio Olimpico on the 10th of September, 2017. (@acmilan.com)

Speaking to Sky after Gianluca Rocchi’s final whistle, Leo said: “We didn’t give the best of ourselves when we had the ball and when we didn’t have it. We have to grow and it takes time to grow. We became confused after the first chance of Lazio. They are united and this is still something that we are missing to become more of a team, and we can’t allow Milan to suffer defeats like this one.

“What went wrong? We went into confusion after Immobile’s penalty. We have to grow, we are young, and this is my job as an older player to always maintain the team. The mood is low and it’s normal after a defeat of this time. Now we need to roll up the sleeves, think about Thursday, improve every day on the field and in training. No one gives you anything and we have to have more hunger.”

Leonardo Bonucci, Mateo Musacchio, Ricardo Rodriguez and Ciro Immobile during Lazio-Milan at Stadio Olimpico on the 10th of September, 2017. (@acmilan.com)
Leonardo Bonucci, Mateo Musacchio, Ricardo Rodriguez and Ciro Immobile during Lazio-Milan at Stadio Olimpico on the 10th of September, 2017. (@acmilan.com)

In his MilanTV interview, the summer signing stated: “We have to learn a lot from this defeat. We saw that we if we don’t give 100% then we suffer even more than what we deserve and be severely punished by our opponents. We were mentally drained after the penalty and Lazio hit us hard on the counter attack. We must learn to be a team even in difficulties, we must always give 100%. We were challenged from the start and were unable to react, it’s not good, we must improve.

“We are a new squad. It’s my responsibility and the one of the boss and the management to lead this group to success. Every moment we spend together is important. Tomorrow we’ll have time to reflect on today’s match, our problem was mostly psychological. It will do us good to take a step back. We have to get back to it at the Europa League right away. We need to improve both upfront and behind.

“We need more humility in defense and be more ‘bad’ in the last 30 meters. We must stick together also when playing in the EL, it’s a competition that many in the team have never played in before.”

25 COMMENTS

  1. It’s all about coach, and it is everything Montela’s fault. I mean with all that players he could ‘nt make decaent formation and stimulate players to run and just play football. montela out!!!!

  2. It’s a wake up call for both coach and players… Am really PI*S not that we lost but that we conceded 4 goals. And Montella should stop that Shi*ty one style formation and mix it up.
    I knew the formation Milan was going to play against Lazio but didn’t know Lazio formation and that makes it really easy for any coach who has any small tactical knowledge not much just small ( eg. An inch) to counter attack our 4-4-3. JUST MIX IT UP. FORZA MIAN

  3. 3-4-1-2(1-1)
    ——————-Donnarumma——————-
    ——————————————————
    ——–Romagnoli—bonucci—Musacchio——
    ——————————————————
    Conti——–Kessie——–Biglia——-Rodriuez
    ——————————————————
    —————————Calhanoglu————-
    ————–Suso———————————-
    ————————-Silva———————–

    Thank me later!

    • This formation exactly with bonaventura, Abate, locatelli, cutrone and maybe some other players as backup. Thank God someone finally gets it lol.

    • Agree with you Azad.
      That’s more like it.
      Strongest possible XI. With players in their natural positions and good bench to fall back on in case of any worries.
      We need to play suso and hakan behind the striker to create anything from the middle otherwise its all too predictable with attacks coming from right flank while we remain wingless on the left side.

    • If only montela would visit this blog, he would be much smarter 😉
      And when he said monotolivo was good I almost cried, sometimes I wonder if milan are in some kind of sado mazo mood
      destroying themselves and enjoying it

  4. I hate these typical italian fans
    Putting hate on borini as if it’s his fault yes he is shit
    What about cutrone
    Just because he is young doesn’t mean he can’t have a bad game
    I don’t see Chelsea, Barcelona starting batshuai or Alcaer against a team like Sevilla or arsenal
    So please blame montella

  5. It is all on monetella and his so bad formation and specielly subs i mean what a hell is he doing , milan best formation should be 442 specielly with the quality of the players ac milan has , so this in my opinion must be ideal donna
    Conti bonucci Roma RR
    Sosu Bona biglia calanhanoglo
    Kalinic Silva

  6. Kessie couldn’t give a decent pass to save his life. Calabria is too much of a weak link.. the right wing was a free express way. I think Kalinic should be our starter then we switch btw Silva and Cutrone. Lets give him time to grow lets we destroy him

  7. This psychological mumbo jumbo really reminds me of latter days of berlu – galli era. How about talking from tactical and technical points of view for once instead of this intangible daniel kahneman bs? At least anyone can measure and assess effectiveness of ur tactical and technical accomplishments moneyball style. If there really are still psychological problems even after new 9 real players arrived then do something about it, hire tony robbins (serena williams is one of his winning client), simon sinek or anyone else to fix it, dont just talk about it. U said it so urself bonucci, milan never looked like theyre gonna win that match, penalty or no penalty so dont blame the penalty for ur pathetic lost. I recommend putting ur 6 scudetti medals on montella’s neck to remind him how and why u won it with juve: 3-5-2

  8. Our problem dear captain, at least one of the big ones, is you. I hope the fact that you’re playing the worst football in your life despite getting paid the highest for doing so, bothers you half of what it bothers me.

    Bad performances are forgivable; the way you let Immobile pass you in the 70th min is not. This is not a retirement program for you; wake the f**k up and start performing.

    I hope curva sud let’s Bonnuci understand this already from the next match if he doesn’t start showing up.

    Oh, and no one thinks now that our problem is a timid captain that can rally the team up? If Monty was wearing the armband 50% of the posts here would be about that.

    • That last part of about the armband and Monty… so true, so true that it hurts.
      But thats fans on this blog for you, now even after singing Cutrone’s name throughout the summer until now, people are already calling for him to be benched. He had a poor game? What can he do as a lone striker? Even Lewandowski would’ve struggled the way we played. He ran and fought but didnt get a single decent pass to work with.

      • Yeah. I mean I still doubt Cutrone’s ability to perform throughout the season, but in his current form, Montella had to start with him. And should do so in the next match as well.

  9. We have to switch formation to a 3-5-2
    If we don’t we’re going to be turned over every week
    Bonnuci hasn’t started well at all and he’s going to have to have a long hard look at himself, he’s not playing like the world class defender we’ve seen and he’s certainly not leading by example, Immobile made him look like Bonera on one of his off days, and we’ve all seen how bad Bonera was on his good days let alone his bad ones
    What worries me most of all though is how much they caved in after the first bit of pressure Lazio applied, it was scary to say the least, I know Montella picked a ridiculous team and even worse tactics but no matter what players was put out on the pitch they should at least know not to clam up and shit themselves because you go one nil down but to allow 4 goals in quick succession is unforgivable and even worse still was our coach didn’t change one thing at half time
    What game was he looking at that he didn’t see the need to change things it was as obvious as the nose on his face that his team selection was totally wrong
    I was willing to give Montella a chance but with every passing game he looks like he’s in way over his head and sooner rather than later he’s going to loose the dressing room and that’s a fatal accurance especially with some big egos in there

  10. “It’s my responsibility and the one of the boss and the management to lead this group to success” Well its true this guy seem to be thinking too much of himself .He’s certainly a great player but should talk abit less individually not always like “I’m here to continue winning” “I have this responsibility” Sorry to say but mehhn we didnt buy you solely because of your name.! Your leadership qualities which is good to have though is only secondary to your playing performances like every other player!! We aren’t that desperate you know and youre playing way to many long balls boy. I am heavily counting on you so improve.

  11. Shiiiiii…..all d goals came in from d right hand side……obviously we are so predictable…..teams just look at our predictable 433 & cancel out suso…. & kessie was so horrible yesterday….I wouldnt mention Cutrone & Borini coz they themselves are still surprised they are been started…..Montella is just not for for dis Job…..I won’t call for his sack now but he is not fit……Brendan Rodgers!!! Anybody?? Bonucci was terrible yesterday like he has been so far…..but I won’t criticize him yet coz he is just getting used to d mediocre players around him…….for Biglia…..I honestly dint see anything wrong in his game…..I think if Monty & kessie had played better…..Biglia’s calmness & control of d middle would have shown……

    All in all….they had better win big dis Thursday…..no story

  12. Ok.

    There is no point blaming individual players when the whole team played shit.

    We can blame players if 1,2 or 3 of them had a bad game and didn’t play up to the level of their teammates. Here the entire XI looked clueless.

    If the entire team sucks then it is the coach who has to take the blame and try to fix the problem if he has any clue about it.

    I didn’t want to assess every players performance but I will do it anyway and share with fellow milanistas what I observed during the match. I will not give any excuses to protect any player. Just the fair assessment.

    Cutrone- didn’t do anything. I wonder why he even showed up for the match. 0/10

    Borini- runs a lot. Zero productivity. 0/10

    Suso- only player who looked capable of making something happen but still was below his standards. 5/10

    Kiesse- terrible first touches. Miserable passing. Zero powerful runs in midfield. 0/10

    Biglia- got too easily robbed off the ball many times. Couldn’t protect the defense.1/10

    Montolivo- slow as a snail. Offered nothing going forward.0/10

    Calabria- he just vanished when we were conceding goals. The worst on the night.minus five on ten.

    Bonnucci- got dribbled too easily. Couldn’t lead the defense or the team.0/10

    Mussachio- just like cutrone, I wonder why he even bothered showing up for the game

    RR- couldn’t have any impact whatsoever​.1/10

    Donnarumma- didn’t do much other than pick the ball from the net.0/10

    I have no bias for any player. I’m a milan fan first.

    This is what I meant when I said that there is no point blaming individual players when the whole team played shit. It’s montella’s fault.

  13. ”We must win back balls with malice.”
    I miss Kucka a lot 🙁
    Mauri can do this job but he had one bad game so everyone hates him now. Just like people did with Ely.

    And come on, don’t tell me Abate would do a worse job of leading the team as captain. I’ve always said this, Bonucci should not be the captain just after joining. This instills more arrogance in already an inflated arrogant personality. Which is helpful, if he is Ibra. But he is not Ibra.
    It should have been Abate.

    Oh and, Biglia is not Pirlo.

    • Definitely, I just hope that Montella has the balls to bench Bonucci if he performs poorly. I mean, Zapata has outplayed him recently, and thats not only because of Bonuccis bad form, but because Zap and Musa actually seemed to have chemistry while playing. We also have Romagnoli who should be a starter. Abate should definitely have been the captain, I kept saying it throughout the summer, either Monto keeps the armband or Abate wears it. If anything Abate performed even better while wearing the armband. Something that cant be said about either Monto or Bonucci, as I dont know why Bonucci is called a leader. He never was the leader of the three man backline. He had Buffon behind him, and both Barza and Chiellini are more of the leader types than Bonucci.
      He may dictate the play from the back, but that’s not enough. The way he ran up the field and left our backline exposed and Lazio countered with the fourth goal, that’s not being a leader.
      I dont know what it is that makes people think he is one.

      Yup, Biglia and Pirlo has nothing in common, Biglia is more of a Xabi Alonso type rather than Pirlo/Xavi.

      • Well said, mate.
        I will share a secret hope I have though. I hope Gabbia can become the play who wins the ball with malice and leads the team in 5-10 years.
        I know he has the personality. He is a gem.
        Or Saint Donna <3

    • Except, of course, abate being capt wouldnt have made any difference vs lazio seeing as how he didnt even play. If abate the one and only real senior milanista couldnt even wrestle the capt armband away from monto (then was a newbie) 4 years ago then why should he become capt ahead of proven winner bonucci now? Besides, of course, the milan’s problems were much bigger than petty captaincy matter

  14. This defeat is simply montella…As good as morata was for Madrid last season, he never started a match ahead of benzema against a big team. I don’t see why you should start a 19yr old inexperienced striker against a lazio team that beat juve. Honestly I don’t think calabria can live up to the hype. Last season against inter we was shit and now against lazio. Suso and hakan purely need to be starting and montella must look for a way to start them. All the same let’s support montella and the team we can still win the league. Chelsea lost 4 to arsenal and still won the league. Forza Milan

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