Milan set to use 3-5-2 against Austria Wien on Thursday, André Silva-Kalinić in attack, Romagnoli back in defense

André Silva during training at Milanello. (
André Silva during training at Milanello. (

André Silva and Nikola Kalinić are expected to get a start against Austria Wien as coach Vincenzo Montella is ready to try 3-5-2 this Thursday.

After losing 4-1 to Lazio on Sunday, Montella is ready to change the formation for the upcoming Europa League match and use a three-man defense when the Diavolo play Austria Wien away from home on Thursday at 19:00 CET.

As reported by Sky Italia’s Peppe Di Stefano, Montella will be using 3-5-2 against Austria Wien. Nikola Kalinić and André Silva will lead the line up front, with Patrick Cutrone sitting on the bench after playing 56′ minutes against the Biancocelesti at Stadio Olimpico.

In defense, Alessio Romagnoli is back from injury and he will play his second match of the season as a left-sided center back, with Leonardo Bonucci and one of Mateo Musacchio and Cristian Zapata alongside him. Ricardo Rodriguez is also expected to get a start as a left wing-back.

Lucas Biglia will try to make the fans forget his performance against Lazio and will be used in midfield. Ignazio Abate is likely to start as Andrea Conti is not entirely fit yet, while Sky currently expects Giacomo Bonaventura and Franck Kessié to complete the five-man midfield. This would leave Suso, who – like the rest of the team – did not have a good match against Lazio, on the bench.

AC Milan (3-5-2) – Vincenzo Montella (Probable, according to Sky)
Gianluigi Donnarumma; Matteo Musacchio, Leonardo Bonucci, Alessio Romagnoli; Ignazio Abate, Franck Kessié, Lucas Biglia, Giacomo Bonaventura, Ricardo Rodriguez; André Silva, Nikola Kalinić.


    • Better for this game but the right formation depends on the opponent. I think 3-5-2 would’ve failed against Lazio.
      Abate and Rodriguez have so much ground to cover in defense and attack + 3 in the back will have much more space to cover than 4 at the back. Against Lazio, Napoli, Juve, Roma, Inter 3-5-2 will fail and I am convinced of that.

      Also it is not just the formation. There are the tactical aspects that defines things? Who is going to drift on the wings? Only Rodriguez and Abate? or they will be helped by one of Kalinic or Silva depending on which wing the attack is coming from?
      Or is it Jack and Kessie who are going to support the wing backs? All of this makes different tactical setups?

      Also in defense, one of Mussachio and Romagnoli will be covering the flank, Assuming Bonucci will be playing central in the defensive trident. That would leave the other flank exposed on counter attacks unless Abate and Rodriguez show Cafu like stamina.

      People have to understand that this is not like playing Fifa and there are a lot of choices and movements which have to be considered.

        • 4-3-3 againts 3-5-2 lazio?? its crazy decision for a manager… meanwhile our wingback enjoy attack and forget defense, so yesterday we use 2-3-5… thats why we lose 4-1… 2 goals from same strategy… where is he mind??

    • Stop criticizing. 1 defeat and all hell breaks loose.
      I saw a match where Milan played better for 70 minutes. We were unlucky and made individual mistakes particularly from Calabria and Kessie. We weren’t outplayed and I am convinced of that.

      Montella is doing a great job.

      • Montella is doing a great job? how exactly being raped in Rome qualifies as a great job? Were your goals this season avoiding relegation, or securing mid table?
        Yes there were times last season when even I admired Montella at some occasions, he even made last years squad look decent at times, but now as every hard-core Rossonero I will bash the shit out on him. We have 300 mil squad and that is a BIG NO,NO for perfomance that we saw in Sunday.
        How the hell can people like you claim that Montella is the right for us? Did you ever seen anyone as clueless as he is in last two matches(yes including Cagliari game)? Barcelona is not relying on Messi as much as we are relying on MESSuso. Italian commentator summed it up perfectly after last match: isolate Suso and you will be playing Benevento.

    • Yes Andre is better than crotone and get kalinic where he belongs scoring goals got 3 world class defenders get them in playing together all in Sunderland are laughing at the fact that borini is playing I watched him I know he is clueless believe me get the new ones in got to be better than lazio

      • @Alan little.
        Those of you who keep repeating the “Silva is better than Cutrone” drum beat are missing the point. No one ever claimed the opposite is true. The point is that Cutrone is in form and scoring goals so it is only logical for him to get preference. In tough Serie A matches (i.e. Cagliari) goal scoring chances are often at a premium so as a coach you want to have someone on the field who can convert the few chances you get – this is exactly the reason Inzaghi often used to start ahead of his more talented team mates.
        Of course there is nothing preventing Montella from fielding Silva together with Cutrone or another reliable goal scorer and based on his recent statements he plans to do just that.
        It’s interesting that people always come here with “better” suggestions than the coach yet when those same suggestions backfire on the field no one ever comes back here and says “fellow Milanista sorry I was wrong about that …”.

  1. sometimes we learn just by getting a big slap in the face.
    baroni should never been a starter-specialy not in big he was and never will be a big game players.
    finaly we will i belive see the realy power of our new squad
    with 3-5-2 all players will show their skills
    and baroni will be there where he is buyed for.u subtitute for players
    speialy against weak opponents.
    actualy great we lost so early in he season and so heavy.
    now montella has grown
    lets celebrate this defeate as the beginning f our new area

  2. This formation is not my favorite but why would Montella wait for a disastrous performance before switching formation? He said they didn’t have enough time to practice with the 3 man defense but how could you not practice with it since the day you decided its going to be your main formation for the season? Missing this type of simple logic is what I cant understand about some important people like a coach of Ac Milan.

    • Totally agree. The players Milan signed, Bonucci, Mussachio, Conti and Ricardo Rodriguez are players that suit a 3-5-2 formation. What was the purpose of their signing if we continue to play 4-3-3.

      This is why I have lost confidence with Montella. What was the purpose of signing Andre Silva if we constantly play Borini?

      Why is Montella playing Montolivo if we signed Biglia? Now he’s trying to get them to play together? This guy is crazy or he doesn’t know what he is doing.

      Bring in Pelligrini, Lippi or Capello if Montella looses another match. He helped built this new team and now he doesn’t know what his starting 11 and formation should be?

      It was his idea to go after Bonucci. But he wants to play with a back 4 instead. Montella is nuts man! Smh

      Either we play 3-5-2 or 3-4-1-2 with Suso as trequartista. We have Zapata and Gomez to cover the defense. Cutrone and Borini are back ups for Silva and Kallinic.

      • Agree with most of what you said. But the I think Suso should play as SS in a 2-men frontline, alongside Silva (with Kalinic and Cutrone as immediate back-ups, and Borini out of the rotation altogether).

        If it’s 3-5-2, the midfield should be Conti-Kessié-Biglia-Bona-RR with Silva and Suso up front; If it’s a 3-4-1-2, Conti-Kessié-Biglia-RR, then Hakan in his natural position and again, Silva and Suso ahead. (I believe it goes without saying who the 3-men defense would be).

        • I like the options you are proposing which suggests that you have a good understanding of the players and the formation that will bring the best out of them.

          My greatest concern is that it is obvious that Montella doesn’t see what you and I are suggesting and that’s exactly why I don’t believe he is the right man for the job.

        • I also think a3-4-3 would work with the current team that we have with Hakan playing in the LW and bona in LCM this would relieve Suso on the right. I also think Kessie should be dropped as he has been defensively weak in the last 2 games. Locatelli should partner biglia in CM
          Suso-Kalinic/Silvia/Cutrone- Hakan/

  3. Good, I like it. Let’s try Zapata as the right man in defence, he was fantastic in that position in his Udinese days.
    Interesting to see us play without Suso as well, as it was painfully obvious against Lazio that if he gets isolated and has an off game, then our entire team falters.
    Very interesting line up, hope to see it! Interesting to see Silva and Kalinic up front as well, hope they link up well. Im excited.
    And if this line up/formation proves to be succesful, I hope we’ll stick to it.

    • I’m pretty sure Zapata used to play in the middle of a three man defense during his Udinese days. Didn’t he?

  4. How to utilize Suso into three man defence and play two up front… 3412 in the hole and leave Jack and Hakan on the bench? That’s a tough one to crack

    • Just posted this above, but this how I see it:

      I think Suso should play as SS in a 2-men frontline, alongside Silva (with Kalinic and Cutrone as immediate back-ups, and Borini out of the rotation altogether).

      If it’s 3-5-2, the midfield should be Conti-Kessié-Biglia-Bona-RR with Silva and Suso up front; If it’s a 3-4-1-2, Conti-Kessié-Biglia-RR, then Hakan in his natural position and again, Silva and Suso ahead. (I believe it goes without saying who the 3-men defense would be).

  5. this defeat will surely make montella know that he should take everysingle serie a match with full attack. 09092340618 add to any whatsapp group

  6. Again.. nuttella is clueless with the number of quality attacking midfielders u have u switch to 352 because of a bad game.. for me Milan should play 4231 ..allowing suso,Hakan. And jack ..all in one game…now. that will be strong… if has to go with a three man bk line then …3421 … one strikker with two attacking midfielders … will be more creative than this 352.. trust me this is another basic formation for Milan… all we will see is jack trying to create something and lots of crosses

  7. 352 (def) & 3412 (atk),

    …………… Gigio
    …… Mus – Leo – Rom
    Abt/Cnt – Kes – Big – RR
    ……… Jax/Cano
    …… Kal/Suso – Slv

    • I like this 4-2-3-1 formation too – for offense! And the best thing is anyone of Silva, Cutrone and Kalinic would fit well, with 3 creative mfds behind them and fullbacks who know how to cross. That said, I would still worry a bit about defense. 3-5-2 or 3-4-1-2 (with Jack in the first and Hakan in the second – and Suso up front as a SS) are my favorites, at least for now.

  8. Pelligrini is a better option. Milan has won CL seven times, won the scudetto severally and has recently invested over 200million on new players. Although,i really don’t understand what the likes of borini and hanka doing in Milan just as I still don’t why with all our pedigree in Europe the coach we can get is montella. That’s a big shame on Milan. It clearly shows that we are not ready. Just have a look at inter

  9. 3-4-2-1




    Suso. Bonavantura/Cahalnoglu


  10. 08090803949
    Add to any milan whatsapp group.
    Milan is a new team and we still have time to prove our selves.
    Montela is a great coach he needs some time too.forza Milan

  11. montella should be givin some more credit.
    his stubbornes using 4-3-3 when not having the right players
    now finaly switching to 3-5-2 is a great chance.
    the team has all the players to succes for this change
    always also to remember -that with 11 new players there is no chance to play beauty football
    personaly i knew we gona loose using against 4-3-3 with borini and cutrone specialy against a team like lazio
    more effective would be silva on left wing kalinic in middle and suso on right wing
    but neverless lets see how montella will learn from this

  12. I agree the 4-1 defeat is like a healthy slap in the face. I think that Montella is in doubt with his 433 formation now. However, playing in european league or champions league with 3 men defence is like suicide. Too risky for being knocked out by a team with prolific strikers using counter attack. 4312 is proven for UL/UCL. Suso can play upfront or in the hole as a CAM. Hakan’s natural role is as a CAM. For serie A, 343 like Zaccheroni’s style is a better strategy than 352 in terms of aggresiveness in collecting 3 points as many as you can.

    • Really? Is that why 3-4-3 purist zeman never wins jackshit in serie a while conte kickstarted juve’s rejuvenation, starting 3-5-2 renaissance in serie a (and europe) while he’s at it? Because 3-4-3 is more suitable for serie a?
      Regarding 3-5-2 in ucl: “benfica, AC MILAN, barca, dortmund won their first ever ucl using 3-5-2. Madrid won FIVE straight ucl using 3 man defence system. Madrid won 99/00 ucl and bayern won 00/01 ucl using 3-5-2.” Oh and milan and juve lost in ucl finals using 4-3-1-2

  13. Montella is our problem, 433 will not work with the players he has, best options are 343, 361, 451 or 442, we need suso, calh, and Bonaventura in one match

  14. I wouldn’t mind seeing how bonaventura played as a wing back. Rotating with RR as he can playboy the left of a 3 man d.

    Mussachio bonucci romagnioli
    Conti kessi biglia bonaventuta
    Kalanic silva

      • I agree. But how in the world did Montella start him over Abate? That is nuts man!

        And starting Montolivo along side Biglia? I could have done way better than Montella as I would have never choosen Montolivo, Borini, Calabria, and Cutrone despite his form.

        Cutrone is way too young to burden him with the responsibility to lead Milan attack especially against a well organized and experienced team like Lazio.

        Abate, Hakan, Romagnoli and Kallinic should have started the game.

  15. Just because montella has come to his senses doesnt mean 3-5-2 will bring instant success, but at least its only september so theres still plenty of time to get back on winning track. Stick with it for a while montella even when the results are against u. However, im sure milan will play better using 3-5-2 with proper players, unlike milan b in that match vs shkendija
    4-3-1-2 or even 4-4-2 with 2 holding mf can be alternatives but whats with 4-2-3-1 suggestion? Which player do u actually think would occupy lw position, knowing montella’s obvious bad habit? In real world, only idiots like montella would sacrifice 38m AND 25m rated st in favor of 2,5m/year (more than suso, don bon AND belotti) useless junk

    • In the 4-2-3-1 formation, the 3-men line behind the striker are actually more advanced midfielders. It would be Bonaventura at the lmf position, Suso in the right and Hakan as CAM. Those are three creative players, Kessié is a B2B who can come charging from behind and the FBs are also good offensively… that would be a pretty nice team for attacking purposes. It’s the defense the real problem here, as it would be just as exposed as in Montella’s 4-3-3 (if not even more so). Also, agree Montella wouldn’t sacrifice 38m AND 25m rated sts (but in my mind, Silva would be the starter, anyway).
      The 3-men backline looks like a must indeed, there’s no scape from it, at least for now. Both 3-5-2 and 3-4-1-2 (with Jack and Hakan, repectively) should be used, depending on the opposition and game situation. If he could just stick to those two formations, I believe he would be fine.

      • Because u’ve seen bona, not borini, play as lm/lw once this season? I perfectly understand that it should be bona or even hakan who should be playing there but thats not the reality in montella infested world

  16. I have not been able to get over that hammering yet. But at least montella has woken up and is looking to play the best XI.

    I hope it works well and we get some game time playing this formation in Europa league so we can man up in serie a with this formation.

    For me though 4-3-1-2 and 4-3-2-1 are still the best formations.

    Bonucci played 3 at the back at juve with cheillini and barzagli. It doesn’t imply that it will succeed here too.

    I hope things change for good though and we get back to winning ways.

  17. So we need to be destroyed,humiliated and be disgrace before our Milan coach relies that the team was made to play 352 .
    I just don’t understand and nothing will also me feel that we have a good coach ,just that we have a seria A coach but not a good coach

  18. Ac milan problem is not formation, what mater most is the selection of player for the right position.
    Now we want to switch to 352 cuz bonuchi pattern of play and forgetting our keeper who like starting the game from d back.
    This formation could work against small team but when we are playing big team, i strongly believe that same thing against lazio will repeat itself.
    Montella should work on selection of player for starting 11, Montolivo kills attacking football, borini lack self confidence and inexperience, and crutone should not be rush these three player shouldnt have started the match at all but notwithstanding we need to move forward and learn from the past.
    Let us improve on 433 formation suitable for the likes of players we possessed.

  19. 200m spent and borini Plays every week,
    200m spent and montolivo Plays everyweek.

    That alone should qualify for a sack, og youwanted to play borini and montolivo why buy all these players.

  20. Im thinking of 4-2-3-1 (or 4-4-1-1) like this:
    Conti – Musa – Bonu – Ricardo
    Kessie – Biglia
    Suso Bonna/Hakan
    Andre Silva/Hakan
    We might use Silva as a secondary striker (like aguero/rooney/thomas mueller) cause Silva used to play as an attacking when he was in Porto

    • Since those 3 world class coaches would make matters according to you. Who would you suggest if Montella continues to fail?

  21. At least the defeat against Lazio serves as point of correction, 352 is the best option for the players available now, we hope the players would quickly get to it…..

  22. So this coach been keeping our best formation and players for EL where the likes of Cutrone, Gabbia, Borini should actually be playing. How ironic.

  23. I felt pain seeing how Inzaghi incapacitated Suso with 2 experienced (Lulic and Radu ) players on that wing, they killed him off knowing how he finished them last season. Montella on the other end left Calabria completely exposed to the tall Milinković-Savić who won every single aerial battle to help Lazio keep possession and build attack from left. At some point Luis Alberto was chopping off Calabria for fun and most times the kid wasn’t even in his position to defend yet, Montella left him on the pitch despite 3 out of 4 goals coming from his wing, too bad.

    I am not one of those calling for his immediate sack but i would expect him to fix things and see a winning Milan without those obvious tactical errors ignored by Montella, they are so obvious that i kept wondering if Montella was watching the game at all.

  24. Suso and hakan on the bench. I feel 3421 should be perfect. Suso and hakan behind the striker will be perfect. They can also drift wide when needed.

  25. Please Montella play this boys like this please please please …or try them on training this way by the 3-5-2 information.
    Musacchio Bonucci Romagnoli
    Kessié Biglia
    Abate Rodriguez
    Silva Kalinić

    • I’m with you. The only change i’d make would be Hakan as the CAM and push Suso ahead to play as SS alongside Silva. More creativity without losing finishing power. Oh, and Conti instead of Abate, of course (when he’s healthy).

  26. Forza Milan the fact is that we need more time to adapt to three man defence just like consider Chelsea. And remember always, milanista never give up plz share dis number to Milan whatsapp 08034182405

  27. This year I think the 4 3 3 should be scrapped completely.. I understand you can’t just move to 3 man defence and it takes time. But what’s wrong with a 4 2 3 1? 4 2 3 1and either 3 5 2 or 3 4 1 2 is what we should stick with this year. Suits our players best.

    4 2 3 1
    Conti(Abate)bonucci romagnoli(musacchio) Rodriguez (antonelli)

    Biglia kessie
    Suso Silva bonaventura (calhanoglu)

    3 5 2 also good cause we have 6 more than capable cb’s.. Bonucci romagnoli gomez paletta zapata musacchio..all I know is from now on treat every game like a final. Deploy the best players, there’s no reason for squad rotation so early on and starting 3-4 ‘B’ players In a single match

  28. Some of you just come here open your mouthd and make it so obvious that you know nothing about football…. You all think the formation is a problem…. A 3 man backline will stop us from being whopped like kids…. . Football isnt all about formations….. FCOL napoli use the same 433 to great effect. . Football, especially in italy is all about tactics… Positional awareness. .. And off the ball movement….. Alll this characteristics is what makes you a better team… Sarri has showed the whole world the wonders you can do with that formation..433.. Guardiola also did the same at barca….. Ancelloti did the same with 4312….conte is doing wonders with a 3 man backline with different variations ….no matter the formation you use…. If your team is not tactically prepared…. You will mess up…. Spalleti used 3 at the back at roma…. Now he is using 4231 or 433…formation is just one word for how to put your best players on a pitch…. The tactics and gameplay is all that matters not the formation….

  29. in today’s football, games are won or lost in midfield. Less numbers in midfield means you have to step up the quality in the middle or you have electric pace on the flanks which isn’t the case with our 433. The best way to go for the available players is to play a formation that crowds the midfield and prevent the opposition from playing. I hope the 352 works going forward.

  30. +2348168097838……someone shud please add me now…..why is it so difficult……as for d formation… doesnt matter what formation is on board……the coach just needs to know what to tell the players to bring out the beast in them…….select the best players for the best positions……and let the players know what AC MILAN really stands for if they think they are just here to play…….aside that u can deploy any kind of formation & even field a 2 man advantage of 12 players against ur opponent and still get white washed…….

    Montella be warned o


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