5 things we learned from Genoa 1-0 Milan

Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images

Milan suffered their third defeat in six league games at the hands of struggling Genoa on Sunday afternoon.

A free kick from Dzemaili was enough to clinch all 3 points for the Rossoblu, a vital win considering that they hovered just above the drop heading into the game.

We saw a second half recovery of sorts from Milan, however they weren’t good enough value for anything from the game in what was a hugely anti-climatic performance to follow the two wins.

From a Rossoneri perspective, it is another setback, but just what can we take from the game?

Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images
Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images

1. Lessons learned

Day one of football school here; give away dangerous free kicks and eventually you will pay the price.

A similar free kick had been given away just minutes before the goal, with Diego Capel shooting narrowly wide from a well worked routine.

As if that wasn’t enough to warn the Milan defence, they then gave away another foul near the edge of the box. This time however, there was no mistake.

It was a piece of luck for Genoa that Dzemaili’s effort deflected through the crowd and beat Lopez, yet it was luck that they deserved, or rather a concession that Milan deserved. They paid the price for tempting fate.

The lesson is to be more careful when your opponent is more than capable of scoring from set pieces.

Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images
Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images

2. Familiar problems arising

Since day one of preseason the same issues with the Milan line-up have been apparent, and a third defeat highlights those shortcomings even more.

Yet again the lack of a true ball-hogging midfielder was the ultimate downfall. In a terrible first half, the Rossoneri didn’t have that man to turn the counter and move the ball up field quickly, nor a man to hold the ball and take the sting out of the game.

The Trequartista position is also one that seems haunted for Milan at the moment. No matter who plays there, be it Honda or Bonaventura, they seem to have a bad game.

Bonaventura goes missing so far forward and rarely gets on the ball, but he is a dangerous player who offers a good skill set. There may not be a place for him in the midfield three, so I would be determined to stick with him and let him adapt to the position and the system.

Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images

3. Tale of two halves

It was pretty much a flip of the Udinese game in the sense that the first half was very poor and the second half was a big improvement.

For 45 minutes Milan looked like they hadn’t played football together, like a team that had just been thrown out there to face a well organised and plucky opponent.

The second half was much better because of the urgency that came over the team. It should’t be the case that it takes being a goal down for the team to spring to life, but on the balance of play Milan could have stolen a point despite the man disadvantage.

Credit must go to Genoa though. For a team under performing and under a lot of scrutiny from their supporters, they delivered a very professional performance and will be delighted with the way.

When it comes to getting the job done, take note Milan.

Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images
Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images

4. Revolving door

Mihajlovic keeps trying various strike partnerships involving Balotelli, Bacca and Luiz Adriano, and I’m not sure he knows what works best yet.

I was very hopeful for Balo and Luiz to gel, but for whatever reason it didn’t. They should complement each other better than Bacca-Adriano, and perhaps the fact it was their first start together has something to do with it.

Mihajlovic is no closer to an answer. I would start the next game with Bacca and Adriano and keep Balotelli as a bench option, because he simply wasn’t firing on Sunday despite being one of the more dynamic players.

I’ve mentioned time and time again how the ideal forward partnership works for Il Diavolo. There needs to be a feeder and a finisher; Bacca is the poacher and Adriano should be the deep-lying forward. Substitute Balotelli in for Bacca if that isn’t working.

Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images
Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images

5. Learning the hard way

Alessio Romagnoli got his first red card of the season for a second booking in the 41st minute.

It made a tough task even harder for the Rossoneri and compounded the misery of a dismal first half.

Zapata was to blame for a poor pass that put his central defensive partner under pressure, but Alessio made the referee make a decision and that is something in hindsight he may regret.

Before people jump in with ‘Tagliavento is a cheat’ etc., I do have to say that he had another poor game in which Milan were conveniently one of the participants. He wasn’t consistent with cards and by the end he was giving yellows out for simple contact, although you cannot complain with the red card.

Romagnoli is obviously a young defender with a lot to learn, and this is part of that learning experience, and hopefully he won’t make the same mistake again.

So, those are the five things that I took from the game against Genoa.

Mihajlovic must demand a response from the team in order to build any kind of momentum, but part of me feels that was the perfect opportunity to make it three wins in a row against a team short on confidence.

Another setback, and the team will have to massively raise their game for the upcoming match against Napoli.

Article by Oliver Fisher

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If Miha is a REAL coach when menez comes back he should start bacca, adriano, menez and balo TOGHETER.
4231. with balo- menez- adriano
de jong – montolivio
mds – ely- roma – calibra

Milanisti since 98

Adriano, bacca, ballo and menez are used to play upfront without caring the defense. This kind of thing would never happen in the fist half of the match


really?? I didnt expect this from you, someone who always say that we are missing midfielders… And of we put all our attackers on the field in the same time, who will come in 60-70 min to give freshness to our attack?? bertolacci?? lol.. 4231 would work if you put Jack on LAM/LW and if we had someone for RAM/RW… Maybe Menez?? but no, we dont have players for that formation… and finally we are playing with 2 attackers, and I like it!! Bacca and Adriano is duo we need to play, with Balo/Menez behind them or as impact sub…… Read more »


i really do hope we get Hakan for cam in January I know he will cost a lot but like alessio your paying for the future we should sell menez to Liverpool or any. other rich epl team that buys of highlights and use that money to outbid the other teams after him. I mean I love menez but Hakan is better for us with his position now and for the future menez with only be an impact sub. Still I don’t have so much hope I mean if galliani couldn’t get kongdobia how will he get him.


Hakan would be amazing but like I understand Manu is already biding 40mil




For me Bonaventura is better as wide midefielder than CAM.


Well, he is naturally LM so…


Comment:We should also learn that Balotelli is not a striker, his qualities are that of a CAM (triquaster), his passes and long range efforts, he is fond of going deep to receive. These doesn’t help his other partner up front. He should alwz play behind Bacca and Adriano.
Furthermore, mihajlovic changed his winning team with the introduction of the likes of Bertollacci, that decision didn’t help matters at all. We should stick to our best 11



abate(clabria) zapata (ely) romog antoneli (mds)

kucka montalivo bonaventura

menez(now suso or honda)

adriano(balo) bacca

treq…menes is right person…. balo is better to play last 30 minutes …. mds needs to fight his position when antoneli is ready ….. bertolacci use him last 20 mnts


Miha needs to pick a starting eleven, all great coaches do that.


It give me borning when i see milan playing like this.
To mihj he should know that our constand starting xi are calabri,ely,romang,antoni,kucka,monto,bona,for now he should try sosu,then when menez back he take his place,bacca and adriano.
Bench de jong and balo.
And stop rotatting the team.


based on team condition, they are lacking match fitness (for that reason, they still unable to play with high intensity full time) and it’s already 3rd game in a row. Rotation is unavoidable. Milan lab need to do something to improve their fitness. i think, the labs issue still there in milan.


Tbh. We deserved AT LEAST a draw, considering we played with a man down (who shouldnt have been red carded) for more than 45 minutes… Other than their free kick, what did they create? Dont remember any save of note Lopez had to make? While we had some pretty golden chances. Genoa got lucky that Bertolacci struck a player who was already down, it was goal bound for sure, and Kucka should have buried his chance. And then of course there is Balo and Adriano’s chances. We have to be more clinical, no doubt. But this is the second time… Read more »


rotten players


Why always praising balo? He is bad striker. He hardly find or create space. He got all the technique but not the skill. You will hardly see balo score goal the same kind as bona did on palermo. He should be a winger or cam. And then there is Bonaventura, lack vision and seem rushing things. But he good at finding space though. Dont praise or hate anybody yet, there is long season ahead.


I think we need consistency as far as how we line up. I personally think the best formation for us would be going back to the christmas tree Ancelotti used to use:

–De Sciglio-Romagnoli-Ely-Abate

Bertolacci and Bonaventura could interchange but this would allow us to build up the play and Balo would integrate as a second striker while having support around him. What do you guys think?


What I learnt so far is….. Until Mihaj finds his best defenders and they gel perfectly together and become consistent, we need to keep using a defensive mid fielder in front of the defense. Kucka though energetic and quite good on the ball isn’t a natural defensive mid, so also Montolivo. We seriously need a mix that will bring balance to that midfield.

pitch milano

My god she va pls dnt comment I think milan is on track We all see the result and judge the team like it was 11on11 we got a red card and yet we played the 2nd half with heart which we lacked last season! Also this team is still finding it’s feet and it was 3 games in a row hence the rotation I mean I dnt like saying this or even reading abt it but the truth is that this is not a video game, players need to rotate to avoid injuries I think mihja is doing good… Read more »


This is what i learned Milan is still crap thats all


Comment: what i think is dat d players are not yet at their best. they are still suffering from fear of old truma. until dey do away with dr fear n realise they are milan ‘ dats d spirit’ dey wnt do well. if we are observant they do perform well against tough teams though may not win bt have a gud play. miha kips rotating until he finds his first 11


the under construction sign won’t be put down any time soon huh… the bumpy road are longer than i thought.




Something that made me very happy and sad at the same time was when Montolivo gave the armband to Desciglio. It felt so right, like he is meant to be our leader but unfortunately he is not playing up to his potential right now.


Coz he isn’t and never was a left back.


He is improving though.


He is, lets hope he will get full season


dejong such a poor player. once he left the field, we start to create a lot of chances even with ten men. both zapata and calabria is under huge pressure when dejong plays because he will not move the ball forward. absolute zero quality on the ball. also the hard work of honda is so under rated, it makes me sad


I have to reply to you with some absurd statement cause something is off with you.

De Jong is better than Messi!


WTf ? WTF is your problem with De Jong ? is he your biological father and you hate him ?


As much as we all loved de jong we didnt realise that his negative playstyle was greater than his postive and now finaly something is happening. I think the same goes to deigo lopez, we all said de jong was our best player.. what a beast etc etc., but it turned out to be the opposite. We will say the same about deigo lopez.. “one of the best GK” we lucky to have him etc etc.. but the goals he lets in raise questions, we shouldnt act blindly.. i think abbiati is a better goalkeeper. Abbiati too have his bad… Read more »


As I see it, Miha was wrong here. This was a match where the opposition had fast attacking midfielders which they used successfully on the counter and pressured hard and constant when off the ball. His decision to put Montolivo in the regista position is attack minded but Montolivo needs space and time to pick the pass, which he couldn’t have because of the constant pressure. Montolivo also leaves the defence exposed to some degree, and as Roma’s second yellow proves, our defence just can’t cope with exposion to fast attacking midfield yet. Besides, De jong was poor in the… Read more »


like some one said earlier, the under construction would really be up for longer than we thought. though many people would be on my neck, but i’ll say this, balotelli can still not play with a second striker.he makes his fellow strike partner useles, fro now sinisa should stick to bacca andriano partnership wif balotteli as an impact sub. starting bartolacci really backfired, He’s overrated seriously.. i realy do wish menez come back real soon..


Things We Learned From Genoa vs Milan #6
Never get too excited by two or three good performances. Milan are always ready to go back to playing like grandmas at the drop of a hat.


Imt tired of Milan. Let’s be real people. We are the same level of greatness as RM, ManU, Bayern. And THIS is the team we put forward and expect to win? When did we settle for such mediocrity??? Milan has been known for having the best in the world but we are stuck with guys like bonaventura leading our attack. It’s no discredit to him, but, really? Is this what we want to put on the field and expect to go deep into champions league/win scudetto?? We need to clear out a lot of our bench players first of all… Read more »


too many problems in milan
for defense
we do not have a center -back a strong defense, Romagnoli is not enough,we need more players like Romagnoli
like : hummels,Laporte,Umtiti,marquinhos, for youngster Marlon santos (fluminence)

to midfield
we just need Trequartista, Kevin De Bruyne in nomor 1 choice, but Marek Hamsik or Nasri also a good player, for youngser : Dennis Praet

Forza Milan #weareacmilan