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Match Recap: Milan drop points & lose two players to injury in 1-1 draw with Udinese

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Gigio Donnarumma and Lucas Paqueta both left in the first half of a gut-wrenching draw at the San Siro

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

AC Milan hosted Udinese at the San Siro tonight, and despite being separated by 21 points and 12 places in the table, Udinese was able to pull out an all-important point for themselves while Milan were once again left to rue missed chances and feel shame after allowing another preventable goal.

Besides the draw, Milan will also have to worry about the injuries suffered in the match, as both Gigio Donnarumma and Lucas Paquetà had to be subbed out in the first half. The dropped points are bad enough, but losing two key players only days before the big match against Juventus is even more concerning.

Milan opened the game strongly, with a good chance on goal within the first two minutes, but the biggest story of the first half was the forced substitution of Gigio Donnarumma, who was taken off after picking up a knock. Donnarumma went out for a long ball outside of the penalty box, and when he was met by a Udinese player, he kicked the ball out to touch with the outside of his boot, and somehow in that motion picked up enough of a strain that he had to be taken off. Pepe Reina was brought in as Donnarumma’s replacement.

Gennaro Gattuso decided to go with a midfield diamond, with Lucas Biglia hanging back covering the back four and Lucas Paqueta playing in the hole behind Patrick Cutrone and Krzysztof Piatek, and while Milan didn’t score in the first 30 minutes plus, Paqueta created a number of fantastic chances, although the comparison to Kaka might be a little premature.

Unfortunately, Paqueta was also forced off the pitch because of injury, and he was subbed off in the 41st minute for Samu Castillejo. The formation didn’t seem to change a whole lot, with Castillejo still drifting freely behind the strikers.

Milan opened the scoring just on the cusp off half-time, as Cutrone did very well to control a free kick in the box and square it for an on-rushing Piatek. And while Juan Musso, the Udinese keeper, made the initial save, Piatek followed his shot and simply headed the ball home. A poacher’s goal made with a good effort from both Milan strikers on the pitch.

Milan came out of the half looking to add a second goal, but was not able to add to their total before Udinese struck back. After Piatek’s effort from a corner kick was cleared off the line, Udinese broke on the counter attack and Milan’s defenders were not able to get back in time to stop it. Kevin Lasagna made no mistake after getting the ball from Seko Fofana, who had made a brilliant run. Lasgna was unmarked in the box, and he easily drew the two teams level.

The third, and final change, for Milan was to bring Davide Calabria on for Ignazio Abate, as again Gattuso found a way to change right backs when needing a goal. Udinese locked down on defense and did their best to keep Milan out the rest of the way. Despite a few chances, Milan once again failed to find a way to score.

Udinese’s Rodrigo De Paul nearly found a winner in the final minutes of stoppage time, but he was unable to get a shot past Pepe Reina and the visitors simply ran down the clock from the subsequent corner kick.

Another wasteful performance from Milan, but at least it wasn’t a loss, right?