Zlatan Wasteful But Impactful
Zlatan Ibrahimovic had a mixed game against Udines. The veteran striker opened up numerous opportunities for himself and his teammates but struggled to capitalise on his opportunities. He notably toe poked a shot that rocketed over the crossbar in the second half. Despite failing to score, his impact was a mental one where the team seemed to believe and fight back to regain a foothold in the game in stark contrast to the weak mentality seen in the first half of the season. The team seems to hold themselves to a higher standard when Zlatan is on the pitch and this was demonstrated when they fought back from 1-0 down and when the were stuck at 2-2.
Conti and Castillejo Finding Chemistry
Andrea Conti had an amazing game against Udinese where he provided a sleek assist for the equalising goal as he overlapped well to catch Leao’s lay off before squaring the ball for Rebic to score. Conti also managed to provide a key pass for the winning goal as he launched a perfectly weighted ball into a dangerous area for Rebic to control before his one-two exchange with Zlatan and the winning goal. The RB was impressive but a lot of praise needs to go to the chemistry between Conti and Castillejo that has allowed both players to flourish and keep opposition players flummoxed on the attacking sequences.The duo have both worked hard in the past two games and both getting the job done offensively.
Theo Hernandez has now scored more goals across all competitions (6) than any other AC Milan player this season.— Squawka Football (@Squawka) January 19, 2020
Coming up clutch from left-back... again. pic.twitter.com/VJXT3UWjIN
Who would’ve thought that Milan’s best ever left back would bring the most exciting left back to the club. I often find myself recalling seeing the leaked image of Maldini and Theo meeting in Ibiza in the summer. Would either of them think that he would be the most exciting signing of the past few years. The former Real Madrid and Real Sociedad defender scored again, he now has 6 goals in all competitions and is a huge reprieve for the attackers as his goals have been crucial. His technique is astounding as not many could have pulled off that volley. Once again, Theo shows that he is the undisputed starter and will continue to use his offensive ability to hide his defensive liability.
Second Half Redemption For Rebic
What an incredible 45 minutes from the Croatia international. Rebic has been absolutely dreadful with his finishing until the Udinese game, I spoke about his potential after his start against SPAL in the Coppa and he came through in the league. This game will have done wonders for his confidence and hopefully he can become a super sub over the next few games. Rebic offers so much pace and strength in the attack that opponents just do not know what to do when he has the ball as demonstrated by his second goal. He left three defenders floundering around him as he received enough room and time to nick a winner after some amazing close control play.
Donnarumma trying to be Italian Neuer pic.twitter.com/HbPIfq2Yqt— Troll Football (@TrollFootball) January 19, 2020
Donnarumma Shows Mental Strength
Donnarumma’s howler of a run out of the box cost Milan an early goal as the keeper shockingly misread the situation. The keeper has adopted a rushing approach this seasons that he used sparsely over the past few years, he has encountered a few close calls this seasons but paid the price this weekend. The more important takeaway from the game is the mental toughness of the young keeper as he managed to keep his head up high to quite literally save Milan throughout the second half. His two saves on Lasagna were vital while his ability to block Mandragora’s toe poke from point blank range was nothing short of a miracle. Even when Gigio falters, he manages to step right back up and bail Milan out. Easily one of the most underrated talents in the world.