FAN ARTICLE by David B.
The sickness that has been too evident throughout this year at Milan, finally overwhelmed its victim on Tuesday. Apart from a 15 minute spell around the time of Kaka’s goal, Milan looked like a team bereft of ideas, confidence & above all, talent.
Michael Essien, once the centrepiece of a superb Chelsea team hobbled around like a pensioner for the first hour getting robbed of possession countless times in his own half, most notably in the 3rd minute which inevitably led to the first goal.
Emanuelson was at sea the whole evening, constantly caught out of position in defence and panicking whenever he received the ball in the opposition half. I recognise that he is not a natural left back and it is time we stopped playing him there, or in fact anywhere. Robinho has not looked like a player capable of playing at this level for some years now and you know that when he comes on to the pitch there really is no hope left.
Then we come to Super Mario. Don’t get me wrong I absolutely love Balotelli, he is immensely talented and can be fantastic to watch but he has never been a reliable presence up front and never will be. Last season when he arrived, his goals undoubtedly got us into the Champions League but several of them were (dubious) penalties and Stephan El Sharaawy’s performances hugely suffered as a result of his presence.
Everyone knows Balo is lazy. Every manager has tried to get him to work hard for the team. Every manager has failed. He is a luxury player who needs a luxury team around him, and that’s why he needs to leave Milan. The Diavolo do not have the quality of players anymore for him to thrive. If we were still in the glory days with Pirlo pulling the strings, Serginho and Cafu bombing down the flanks, Seedorf and Gattuso dominating the midfield and Kaka in his prime terrorising defences then Balotelli would be in his element. But we aren’t. Just think of the players frequently getting first team football now – Muntari, Emanuelson, Poli, Taraabt, Mexes, Zapata, Birsa – the list of mediocrity goes on. This is the sickness at Milan. The lack of investment has meant Galliani has been forced to invest in dead wood that can’t even make the benches at their clubs.
In order to balance the books we need to sell Balotelli after the World Cup, we need to get rid of Mexes and Robinho and their massive pay packets, and somehow convince Kaka to lower his extortionate salary. Italian football is going through a really tough patch financially and the last thing I would want is for a foreign investor to come in and turn the club into a circus like Manchester City or PSG. Milan need to maintain their heritage and regain a sense of the ‘family’ image, which they finally lost when Allegri unceremoniously dumped Ambrosini last Summer.
I think as loyal fans we need to prepare for the worst. There is going to be no European football next season and as a result of that, there is unlikely to be European football the following one. We need to start again and believe in Milan’s youth system which has been touted as one of the best in the world but has produced so few stars in the past decade. Given the dearth of quality centre backs in the team (and in fact, Europe as a whole) surely one of the youth players has the ability to be given a chance over the woeful Zapata and the worse than useless Mexes? We started down a great road last season by introducing ElSha, Niang, and De Sciglio, and we need to find our way back to it.
I want to see players like Iotti, Cristante and Petagna given an extended chance in the first team to prove themselves, because let’s be honest, the next two seasons are already dead.