ZLATAN IBRAHIMOVIC netted a brace as Milan returned to Champions League action last night, and despite a poor first half performance, the Rossoneri came out on top.
Milan made a poor start to the game, Auxerre initially looking the better side, and were it not for the crossbar and poor decision making they could have taken the lead. Fortunately for Milan, Adama Coulibaly’s header hit the woodwork, and Steeven Langil elected to go for glory rather than play a simple bass for a tap in.
There was a setback for Milan early on though, as Massimo Ambrosini was forced off with an injury on the 20 minute mark, thankfully, replacement Kevin-Prince Boateng had an outstanding game in his Champions League debut.
The second half told a different story though. Milan were marginally the better team for the opening part, and then Ronaldinho came to life in the 65th minute, ensuring a strong end to the half.
Collecting the ball from Pirlo, he crossed it in to the box from deep, where Kevin-Prince Boateng flicked it on perfectly for Zlatan Ibrahimovic to tap in his first goal for the club.
It took the Swede just 4 minutes to get his second, Ronaldinho used a burst of pace to get to the edge of the opposition’s penalty area, before passing it left for Ibrahimovic to slot it neatly in to the corner. It was a very well worked goal and was perhaps a sign of things to come.
Unfortunately, the result came at a price, as Alexandre Pato also suffered an injury, which will rule him out of Milan’s game at home to Catania on Saturday – along with captain Massimo Ambrosini – however, positives can be taken from the fact that their replacements will probably be Kevin-Prince Boateng and Robinho.
Overall it was a pretty good performance, and the side showed potential, Milan have started the Champions League campaign with a good 3 points at home – which could prove to be crucial given the tougher ties which lie ahead – and Zlatan Ibrahimovic is off the mark, which will no doubt boost his confidence.
Hefin Davies, Rossoneri Blog