Perhaps Genoa wasn't the strongest opponent Milan could have faced in these trying times. The three points are the only thing that matters, however, and the Rossoneri got them with a 2-1 victory after a solid performance on a rainy Sunday at the San Siro.
Full Time | Fischio Finale ⏱#MilanGenoa 2-1— AC Milan (@acmilan) February 14, 2016
5' ⚽️ @carlos7bacca ⚫️
63' ⚽️ Keisuke Honda ⚫️#ForzaMilan! pic.twitter.com/tetELvCzwP
The Rossoneri began the game aggressively, and it took only a couple of minutes before Keisuke Honda decided to make Mattia Perin work with a great shot on his left, unfortunately saved by Genoa's goalkeeper. Three minutes later, the Japanese attacking midfielder found Carlos Bacca in the box with time to control the ball and make a last shot behind Perin, setting the result to 1-0. The rest of the first half proceeded quietly for the Rossoneri as they maintained play at a high pace, disrupted only by a couple of good chances for Genoa when they were able to slow Milan's ball movement.
.@carlos7bacca fires low into the bottom corner! #MilanGenoa 1-0 pic.twitter.com/dtLg3XR3JE— AC Milan (@acmilan) February 14, 2016
The Rossoneri continued to play well in the beginning of the second half, moving the ball from one side to the other quickly and taking advantage of M'baye Niang and Bacca's speed against a slow defensive line. They found another tgoals thanks to an incredible long-distance shot by Honda, his first of the season in 20 appearances.
The team maintained focus and almost managed to score again on a corner kick thanks to a fantastic volley from outside the area by Riccardo Montolivo that hit the post on Perin's right. Then, Siniša Mihajlović decided to make a change, sending Jérémy Ménez onto the field for the first time this season. The Rossoneri did not adapt well and let Genoa close the gap with a fortunate goal by Alessio Cerci (oh, the irony!) after a great save by Gianluigi Donnarumma on Luca Rigoni's volley. Spurred on by their dumb luck, the Rossoblu made a late rally and tried to score the equalizer for the last two minutes of the game. Fortunately, their comeback fell short.
Mihajlović was furious with his team's performance in the last minutes of the match, as he saw his players lose concentration and play idly, as in the case of Mario Balotelli, who didn't help his teammates on Genoa's last corner kick. At the end of the game, Milan's coach released a short but scathing statement:
Those who doesn't sacrifice themselves for 94 minutes, they won't see the pitch anymore.
However, Mihajlović was apparently still satisfied with the win and the team's performance as a whole, except for those last two minutes, and seemed optimistic about Milan's chances to qualify for the Champions League at the end of the season.