As Fiorentina fell 4-1 to Napoli of Naples, everything fell nicely into Milan’s hands as the battle for a Europa League space came to an end. A win for Milan today against Bologna would secure European football for AC Milan after a break of a few years. Milan would find that win, but they would certainly make it as hard as possible for the
Vincenzo Montella opted for a 3-5-2, and his tactical choices worked out for the most part. Montella can’t be blamed for much here - but his team can. The first half was frustrating for Milan. The Rossoneri seemed to carve open Bologna at will. However, they seemed to find no success in shooting. Gianluca Lapadula was the main culprit, having missed a clear-cut chance to put Milan ahead.
Seriously - you can’t miss those type of chances again and again.Indeed, even as Milan started the second half, the Rossoneri found the chance to shoot at goal over ten times up to the 47th minute, but had only managed one entire shot on target.
With over 20 minutes to go in the game, Gianluca Lapadula found the net - but was widely offside. The technique was decent and he dispatched his shot well, but the offside rule negated any classy play & of course, the goal. Milan finally found the net - legally - through Gerard Deulofeu, who found himself on the end of a Mati Fernandez chipped ball after a nice bit of possession play. The goal was deserved, but Milan should have put this game to bed earlier.
Milan made the most of their rejuvenation as another goal came on 72 minutes from an unlkely source. Keisuke Honda grabbed a goal through a placed free kick from 23 meters. Honda’s ball in was a peach and it beat the keeper by inches.
Gianluca Lapadula banished his early demons by blitzing a point-back half volley into the net to make it three goals to nil into extra time. A good second half performance in the end was enough to banish a poor first half for Milan.
Certainly, Milan got the job done, but they took their time. European football awaits and this team will need to have a good summer to ensure that they succeed next season on the continent and at home, in Italy.