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Tactical Review of Milan's Lethargic Draw with Torino

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Milan drew 0-0 against Torino but there were many positives from the game. Here's a review of what happened.

AC Milan v Torino FC - Serie A Photo by Marco Luzzani/Getty Images

AC Milan drew 0-0 with Torino at home with a squad that looked exhausted, the team has been through a long run of games and is doing just enough to keep up Champions League hopes.

Higuain Not Finding His Feet

Gonzalo Higuain has been visibly frustrated in his first couple of games for Milan. He had the meltdown at Juventus but he has still delivered 7 goals in all competitions. However during the Torino game it was almost certain that Patrick Cutrone was likelier to score than Higuain as he looked tired and out of ideas. He made some poor choices in dangerous areas such as not playing Suso in, not playing Franck Kessie in and taking on unlikely shots. Overall it seems like Higuain is not on the same page as the rest of the team and the pressure is weighing on him. He is a fantastic player but is having a tough run at the moment, hopefully he can be decisive against Olympiacos.

Donnarumma on his way to Legend-status

Gigio put on a remarkable display against Torino. He made three acrobatic saves that kept Milan in the game and he always looked solid when Milan were under attack. This has been a transformative season for him as we can see him develop and adopt new skills into his game such as his improved passing and his developing temperament. He has had some issues with decision making at times but this improve over time and he is well on his way to become the best goalkeeper in the world. This note is just to appreciate his stellar record to date having accumulated over 120 games at the the age of 19 at a club like Milan.

Zapata and Abate Rocking It

Cristian Zapata and Ignazio Abate has been proving everyone wrong over the past few games. I do not want to jinx it but they have been a solid partnership and were rewarded with a clean sheet - only the second clean sheet in Serie A this season. The experience of the pair really shows and they complement each other well with Abate relying on speed while Zapata relies on his positioning. It is interesting to note that Zapata and Abate have more clean sheets than Alessio Romagnoli and Mateo Musacchio in the Serie A. Moreover it was encouraging to see both Abate and Zapata trying to drive forward and push up the team demonstrating their roles as leaders in the squad. Abate has done well to keep the fire burning as Captain!

Cutrone Missed a Sitter

This is something I discussed when we had the poor run of form with three consecutive draws at the start of the season. It is just bad luck. Cutrone played well for majority of the game, we have spoken many times of his pretty average ball control. He should’ve scored but it just didn’t happen. We cannot blame him for the draw but we have to encourage the squad to be more clinical in front of goal. Milan are a team who create fewer chances but in very dangerous positions, all we need to work on is getting Higuain and Cutrone confident and prepared enough to slot home any ball that comes their way. Once again we need Cutrone to step up in Athens and pull us through to the next round of the Europa League.

Average Suso = Poor Milan Attack

It is unbelievable how impactful Suso’s attitude/performance is on the Milan team. I am sure there is a correlation between Suso having an average game and Milan not winning. Suso struggled against Torino, he looked lethargic and in need of a rest. He attempted shots with right foot, overhit crosses and was dispossessed so easily throughout the game. Suso was locked out of the game and unlike the game against Dudelange, Hakan Calhangolu did not step up and take his place. Milan must distribute the creative power behind the ball more evenly as it becomes clearer with each passing game that if Suso is silenced, Milan struggle going forward. Moreover, there seems to be a lack of chemistry between Higuain and Suso in the past few weeks.

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