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Wake her up from this nightmare: a derby is the last thing Milan needed now Israel today


Before the World Cup, Milan still fantasizes about a championship - today they just want to "reach the Champions League" • The Rossoneri have conceded 12 goals in the last three games, and are experiencing one of the most difficult periods in the club's history • Tonight against Inter, they will look to win, and above all not to be defeated again

Milan will face Inter tonight (Sunday, 21:45) for the "Derby de la Madonina", when it is in the midst of one of the biggest and deepest crises it has had in recent decades.

Last week, Rossoneri fans who came to the San Siro could not believe their eyes when they saw the team, who won last season's championship, defeated 5:2 by lowly Sassuolo from the bottom of the table.

It was Milan's heaviest loss in the last 26 years, since Juventus of Zinedine Zidane and Christian Vieri beat them 6:1.

If it was one loss, no matter how heavy it was - so be it.

But he arrived a week after a 4:0 defeat to Lazio and a 3:0 loss in the Super Cup to Inter.

It's unimaginable, but Milan conceded 12 goals in their last three games, and the biggest fear is another defeat against Inter, in Milan's 178th derby.

When the Italian league resumed after the World Cup break, Milan was in second place and the gap from Naples was only 5 points.

Thus, the fans believed that a second championship in a row was entirely possible.

But what happened since then can be defined as a collapse of systems: six games without a win, elimination from the cup, defeat in the Super Cup and a drop to fifth place - 15 points from Napoli.

No one is talking about the championship anymore.

Right now the goal is to finish at least in fourth place.

Coach Stefano Pioli said: "Our Scudetto will be to reach the Champions League."

Sassuolo celebrates Milan.

Five, after four, after three, photo: Getty Images

In total, Milan conceded 18 goals in January, more than in any other month in all the years of its existence!

It's amazing mainly because Milan won the championship last season, thanks in large part to their iron defense.

Some argue that the main reason is the injury to the excellent French goalkeeper Mike Meinen in September.

Since then, the 36-year-old Romanian Ciprian Tatarushanu has been filling his place, and not with great success.

But this is too simplistic an explanation.

Pioli, who received countless compliments after the championship, said: "We fell into a difficult period mentally and tactically. I will have to think about how I adjust the thoughts of the players again so that they get out of this difficult situation."

Misplaced exchanges

The big change ahead of tonight's derby is the return to the lineup of the Danish stopper Simon Carr - who will replace the young Mathieu Gabia, who himself played against Sassuolo, due to the injury of the English stopper Pikayo Tomori.

The 33-year-old Carr, who has suffered several difficult injuries in the last two years, participated in only nine league games this season.

He is much more experienced than Gabia, but not sure that will help.

Fact: Carr was in the team in the defeat against Inter in Riyadh, and was on the field when Lazio scored three times against Milan.

Simon Carr.

Will his return to the lineup help Milan?, Photo: Getty Images

Luca Marcajani, former goalkeeper and current commentator, claims that Milan's big problem is that they did not bring in a worthy replacement for Franck Casilla, who was one of the stars of the championship and moved to Barcelona in the summer.

In Milan, they believed that the 23-year-old Tommaso Povega, who returned from his loan to Turin, would fill Cassia's big shoes - but it didn't happen.

If that's not enough, midfielder Charles de Cutlera, who was bought with great fanfare from Bruges for 32 million euros, does not justify the investment.

The 21-year-old Belgian has yet to score, and has only started six times in the league lineup.

In the first derby of the season, in September, Rafael Lao starred with a double in the Rossoneri's 2:3 victory.

But then Milan was in a good time.

Today it is a closed group, and even desperate.

Another loss tonight against Inter will be a sign that Milan is in a deep crisis, and all this - nine days before the Champions League round of 16 match against Tottenham.

Pioli knows that tonight's game is critical for the rest of the season - and also for his future on the lines of Milan.

"The big games are the hardest," he said, "but the higher the mountain you climb - the better the payoff. And with that in mind, we have to go up to the derby."

Blessed is the believer.

Hernandez is struggling in the Super Cup final against Inter.

What will happen tonight?, Photo: AFP

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Source: israelhayom

All sports articles on 2023-02-05

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