AC Milan returned to the UEFA Champions League for the first time in seven years last night away from home against a familiar foe in Liverpool FC at Anfield. Milan faced a club who have 6 UCL titles to our 7 and who we have only faced in finals previously.
Stefano Pioli started Ante Rebic as the striker for the game and Ismael Bennacer in the midfield. Milan struggled to get a foothold in the game for the first twenty minutes as the players looked nervous and we conceded an early goal as Theo Hernandez kept getting bombarded down his wing by Mohammed Salah which opened space for Trent Alexander-Arnold to get a shot on goal to make it 1-0. The Rossoneri shortly after conceded a ridiculous penalty, Salah stepped up but Maignan made a fantastic save and a follow up save on the rebound. Milan grew in confidence and stunned Liverpool in the final ten minutes of the first half with a brilliant counter by Diaz who passed to Leao who laid it off for Rebic to slot home making it 1-1. A few minutes later, the Rossoneri broke again down the left wing as Rebic squared the ball across, Theo’s shot was saved on the line but Diaz’s late run allowed him to tap in the rebound making it 2-1 for us.
We did not start off the well as we had a goal disallowed but the defence also fell asleep which allowed Salah to score a messy equaliser after a one-two on the edge of the box. Liverpool came back into the game and pressured us back for the remainder of the play which allowed their captain Jordan Henderson to score a wicked shot of a clearance from Bennacer off a corner to make it 3-2 for them. In the late stages of the game, we pushed forward and had some chances with Olivier Giroud but it was tough to bounce back again and we lost 3-2.
Regardless, the game was a massive display of our quality and why we should not be written off as we can stand our stand against what it likely the toughest opposition out there in the competition. Looking forward to next week.