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Milan vs Juve: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

After Milan's 1-0 loss to Juventus, we take a look at the good, the bad, and the ugly.

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The Good: Milan's Defensive Organization

One thing that Milan did well to limit Juventus' chances Saturday. Throughout the match, Juventus' only clear-cut chance on was Paulo Dybala's goal. For the most part, Alessio Romagnoli and Alex combined to form an effective partnership at the heart of the defence, and look to have some chemistry. Even though Ignazio Abate had a nightmare of a game, Milan was able to neutralize Juventus' offence, and that is certainly something that Milan can hang their hat on.

The Bad: Alessio Cerci

Alessio Cerci may be the most frusturating player for Milanisti to watch. He has the raw skills – he's quick, can take on his man and he can cross the ball, yet he makes some of the dumbest errors that a professional footballer can make. For instance, in the first half he made a smart run to the far post. He timed it perfectly so that he was onside and left his defender in the dust. Bonaventura picked him out perfectly. All Cerci had to do was head the ball on target, if he does it's either a goal or it forces Buffon into making a difficult save. Instead, Cerci headed the ball back into the box, where there were exactly zero red and black shirts and about four white and black shirts. At times, Cerci seems disengaged in the play and looks like he's just going through the motions. On more than one occasion Cerci fumbled a routine pass on the touchline, and had it go out for a Juventus throw in. For a player that can show some sparks of quality, Cerci can make some inexcusable mistakes, and against Juventus he made many of them.

The Ugly: The Midfield

From top to bottom, the midfield was a mess. It's embarrassing that the team with the second highest wage bill in Serie A is incapable of fielding three midfielders who can competently pass and play as a unit.

Riccardo Montolivo had an abysmal game and simply isn't good enough to be a consistent starter on a team with any ambition. He's not fast, physical, dynamic or creative enough to cover his myriad deficiencies. If Milan's management has a clue, it should walk away from him when his contract expires this summer. Instead, there's talk of an imminent extension for a guy on the wrong side of 30 who has entered into steep decline in the last two seasons.

Juraj Kucka worked really hard, and did a good job breaking up the play, but he doesn't have enough quality to be a starter. He's not creative at all and has a hard time picking out his teammates with accurate passes, or driving the play forward. Kucka can be a useful substitute, and could be a decent squad player, but there's no way he should be a guaranteed starter for Milan; especially against Juventus.

Giacomo Bonaventura also had a poor game. It's hard to tell whether Bonaventura can succeed as a midfielder when he's deployed between two marginal players. In order to make a proper judgement on Bonaventura as a midfielder, we have to see him with different personnel around him. As a whole the midfield truly lost Milan this game. On a day when Juventus was far from good, Milan had a chance to get a positive result, but the way the midfield played made that impossible.