After tying Lazio and going on a spree of victories beating both Fiorentina and Sassuolo, Milan were expected to, quite easily, beat Chievo.
Milan lined-up as follows:
Milan’s twitter summed up the statistics going into the match:
The stats suggested a big win. Milan managed the win, but it was in typical Milan fashion, of course.
The Rossoneri began the game slowly. Montella’s men lacked any pep in their step and couldn’t find their rhythm. One reason for the slow start was because of Chievo’s high press which made it difficult for Milan to string together passes and form an attack. Chievo, on the other hand, was dynamic and energized, seamlessly splicing through Milan’s defense and firing shots at Donnarumma. The San Siro was unsatisfied and groans echoed during the beginning of the game.
Suddenly in the 24th minute, truly out of nowhere, Deulofeu fired a pass over to Bacca on the left wing, and Chievo’s defenders let the Colombian cut in and pull a shot that resulted in a sleazy goal for Milan:
The whole dynamic of the game shifted, and a more entertaining half would ensue. Followed by an immediate response by Chievo, some back and forth between the two sides, and Suso having to leave the match because of an injury; a penalty was awarded to Chievo. This may have been the worst call all year:
The game was once again all tied up.
The referee called two minutes of extra time and right before the ref blew his whistle, Milan was awarded a penalty. Bacca stepped up to the ball and skied it. A penalty that was truly grotesque—especially for someone like Bacca who is usually cool at the spot. Bacca should have really slowed down:
The first half ended and the game was still tied at 1-1.
In the second half, the referee continued to use his whistle excessively breaking up the match’s flow. Chievo began the half with some opportunities and Milan responded with a few chances. The peculiarity of the game would continue as penalty-missing-Bacca turned into superhero-Bacca with a goal in the 70th minute:
Milan would secure their victory with a penalty taken by Lapadula after a beautiful play by Bacca:
Prior to Milan VS Chievo the Rossoneri sat in 7th place at 47 points. The win today moved Milan up the table to 6th place and enabled Milan to stay competitive for a spot in the Europa League.
Next week, Milan have a much more difficult and consequential match against Juventus.