Claudio Villa - Getty Images
Milan plays to win, Parma earn a draw.
Every once and a great while your team will have nearly ten shots on goal, the bulk of possession, and spells of solid football and somehow lose. Against Parma, Milan had their chances, they had possession, and managed a draw, but you wouldn't be asking to much if you think they deserved a win. Allegri was back on the bench for this one, and Milan went back to a pseudo 4-3-2-1/4-3-3 hybrid. Many pre-match commentaries showed a 4-2-3-1, but if you spent any time watching the match at all, Milan at times was deployed more in a 2-3-3-2 then anything else, with almost little to no presence or possession around the upper right hand corner of the 18 yard box when facing goal, the formation and possession were a bit lopsided. This I blame squarely on a one, Bojan Krkic, and Allegri for playing him at all, and for that long. to boot.
It was his first start for AC MIlan, and it was abysmal. Now I am going to get flack for this, but if someone wants to come out and tell me why he should be applauded for this performance, I am all eyes. He was dispossessed almost at the same one to one ratio as Pato, he crowded El Sharaawy's space, and when given chances he simply didn't finish. It doesn't mean he can't grow, it just means he shouldn't play at the moment. Milan were a bit better when Pazzini/Robinho came on, but at that point Allegri's subs were more risky then rational. Going to three attackers with a point in hand, away from home, could have been suicidal. Some fans will see this as the "right' choice, but these are these are the same fans who in hindsight bias, had Milan conceded, been slamming the Mister. Can't win them all I guess. No harm no foul, but I think you see my point.
As for team selection, I can understand with the fixture list and lack of true success for this team, that all players are capable of starting. The problem is the Coach in me is starting to fear cohesion and chemistry. In six matches we have not started the same defensive four, this is crucial to building chemistry and understanding and helping young players like DeSciglio and Acerbi along. Not to mention, it would at least give some consistency to the midfield when it comes to ball distribution. The attack, and possession don't seem to be a problem and the Little Pharaoh is cementing hid place in the starting line up with his fourth goal in three matches. The problem seems to be his partner and running mates in that front line. Boateng was better today, making smarter choices, but he still over complicates things, Bojan was about as useless as Pato. Pazzini has been solid, but like Pippo, will never do much for you off the ball. Robinho should return healthy, and dangerous, but it means Milan are closer to a poorly balanced 4-3-3.
So there you have it, a draw away from home in terrible conditions. In some seasons it would be acceptable, in this one, of little success and a poor team, it seems to be not enough. Somehow massive expectations continue and it only continues to heat Allegri's seat. Who knows maybe the brass bring Donadoni onto the bench, if Parma allows it, and he can bring along Galloppa and Parolo, those two guys were lively and dangerous. Then again, most still think Pep Guardiola will waltz into Milan, make Bojan his Messi, and carry this team to success. If you watched today's match, Bojan isn't the answer and it would take a miracle for that to happen, not just a Coach. So the season continues, a trip to Russia on Wednesday, and a tactical breakdown of the 4-3-3 on Tuesday. In the meantime, your thoughts on this one are always welcome.