MILAN V NAPOLI #HYPE

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Post by Dante Sun Dec 14, 2014 10:46 pm

It felt like we played away , thankfully Napoli's defence seriously sucks. With that being said , we can be satisfied with the result at least. The team's effort was up there and Inzaghi despite his last subs , actually had a plan this time and sticked with it. It wasn't easy on the eye , but it proved usefull and gave Napoli too much to deal with . Like i said earlier , unless they finished this game soon enough , we would have our chances. Thankfully , we got it quite early for a change and we kept on stopping them. Jack's goal came to pretty much establish the notion in Napoli's heads that they won't be taking the win tonight. Jack , 8.5 game tonight. He's enjoying himself atm and proved Inzaghi right by using him . However , he's not your week in week out 90m player , not yet at least and it showed after the 70th minute . Ses should have been introduced , smh. I am extremely frustrated with how he's been using Ses .

Menez is proving why he's been our best striker when going at goal on his own . The goal was well earned and he tried a lot to score a 2nd , he almost did it and came close a couple of times . However , he must improve with his passing , it is below par . He's wasting a counter attack too many and other times , he simply gifts the ball from pure assureness and by being careless. In his defence he did give one assist to Poli in the 2nd half , which Poli wasted by measuring the control wrong . Aside that thumbs up for Poli , he does what the team needs of him . Back to the point , other than that pass which should have been an official assist by all means imaginable , yes , not looking good off the ball for Menez. In any case , that pass could have been made by simply anyone , was very straight forward .

Honda , Honda has improved his game. Period. Incredibly hard working , always at all times fully focused and gets to be selfless or not simply by deciding what's best for the unit. Essien came on in the last minutes and Honda still run more than him . Honda once again earned my respect whereas Essien once again earned my resentment. Absolutely useless signing , absolutely useless player and absolutely useless substitution by Inzaghi . i r8 BS m8

Overall , it was quite the ugly win but pleasant to see we can actually defend when we must , Milan defended very well for a change. These 3 points are precious , we sent a message out there today and Napoli won't forget about it. Satisfied with the win , can't say happy because 2/3 of the game we played the ball in our own half , which is considered unnaceptable by any means in 2014 .

Some more on the game later , i am however glad we managed to take advantage of their poor defending and with a few words , proceed to basically shut them down as the game went by . Having said that , it was still yet another game that may as well have been another draw , had Napoli not been so below par at defending their goal. Great effort by all the team though and surprisingly , Bonera wasn't so bad tonight . For goodness' sake though . He was such a limitation when coming forward . The chances he was involved with was one thing , the chances that never happened exactly because of Bonera being the RB is my problem. Most highlited issue was when Honda decided he won't pass to him while Bonera was available and instead gave it back , run it's circle and we got counterd , because Bonera . There's no need for such BS to happen .

Thankfully for us , we have a GK again. All hail Diego Lopez , blessed be the day he joined the club Proud . His best game of the season for me and his clean sheet proves it. One amazing save on Higuain's shot late in the 2nd half and 2 saves in quick succession in the first . 9.2 / 10. CB duo was ok , especially Rami proved yet again why he must never be dropped. Let's hope his injury was nothing serious. Simply put , that's what we must want from our CBs. Not just clearing balls to the skies. If we ever want to establish superiority , our CB must lead by example and be competitive . Rami leads by example . I am happy with Rami so far , he earned his place at Milan twice in my eyes. Mexes nothing new , too late for improvements , veteran enough to ease past such kind of games. Did what he had to do and all went ok thankfully. Montolivo did have a so-so first half and a so-so 2nd half , but he was never a burden on the field. His change of play , sure passes and leading by example were sorely missed. And he more or less proved that to be true. Nothing to be impressed , but many things to be happy and confident about our captain. Lead on .

As for Napoli , all i can say is that if they persist on throwing everything on their attacking flare and leaving their defence in such a pathetic state , yeah , it's like giving us a reason to believe we can actually make it to 3rd place. They can score against anyone on their day and they didn't score against us. Milan deserves praise for this game , however Napoli will soon come to regret Benitez' choices defensively , both with player assignment and tactical preparation. Sure they attacked us in our home , but that always seemed to be the plan for Inzaghi anyway. Get a goal and bah-bae football , just counter attacks. Benitez not only willingly fell for it , he never did anything to counter this fact of the game. LOL.

Not sure if i have ever seen such a relaxed 2-0 win when the losing team played 2/3 of the football. We didn't even struggle as we should when it comes to such games . We even scored a 2nd just because they suck beyond their midfielders , Jack just run unquestioned to their box , casually slipped in there without any Napoli player giving a fk , turned his head and scored one , because hey , why not. lmao

It felt good actually winning a good team like Napoli , even the way we did. Let's hope it's not the exception of the rule , because it does feel like it , to be honest with you.

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Post by BarrileteCosmico Mon Dec 15, 2014 2:16 am

OP is the greatest RJ in recent GL history
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Post by Forza Mon Dec 15, 2014 4:21 am

I wonder if this is a turning point in our season? Maybe the next game against Roma will answer that question.
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Post by dostoevsky Mon Dec 15, 2014 12:32 pm

Excellent wrap up from Dante as usual.

For once, when we needed to, the team ground out a result that we desperately required. Having taken an early lead we appeared to be heading inexorably to that frustrating scoreline of 1-1 that has haunted us all season after throwing away lead after lead. When the situation called for it however someone was always on hand, whether it be Lopez, Mexes or Rami. A save was made, a block, an interception. This was not a classic team performance however we stifled Napoli's efforts through the centre and forced them to play a game that isolated Higuain unlike last season where we allowed them to play in and around the box at will.

Menez as stated deserves a round of applause for a terrific individual effort to open the scoring. He might easily have doubled his tally with an even better run in which he made Albiol look positively foolish only to blast over whilst he deserved an assist for an albeit simple pass to Poli. Dante is very right however about his weakness off the ball in this game. There were times when you could see Montolivo in the first half instinctively play the release ball through the centre to a reference point that simply wasn't there. It may be a positive that Menez is comfortable drifting wide and coming deep to collect the ball however he needs to pick and choose his moments and even his games to do so. There will be games when it is better for our central forward to occupy a stricter role up front rather than clogging the midfield however Menez isn't showing such subtlety in his game. It's something Inzaghi needs to be wary of in his instructions, particularly against teams who press effectively. Fortunately for us it did not prove costly against Napoli however it certainly affected our fluency at times.

Armero deserves praise for a fine delivery for Bonaventura's goal however his attacking forays were limited whilst he was defensively frail. His judgement of cross field balls is consistently poor and the majority of Napoli's best attacks were created down his side, though he does not bear all responsibility for this. I will praise him for one excellent interception late in the second half however. Bonera unsurprisingly picked up a booking when driven at 1v1 by Mertens however he was on the whole afforded good protection by Poli and Honda and Ghoulam's lack of influence on the ball meant he had little to deal with. He wasted one excellent crossing opportunity with four bodies to aim for but this will happen when you only have a handful of chances to attack.

Mexes and Rami were both dependable, with the former making one terrific interception to prevent De Guzman tapping in, though it went worryingly close to our own net. They were alert throughout and for the most part prevented Napoli from having the time and space to shoot from central positions. Hopefully Rami is alright as after Zapata replaced him due to injury we looked far less solid. Zapata's relative deficiency on the ball aside he lost his marker twice in the box on two occasions in the short time he was on the pitch though the opportunities were wasted by a poor Napoli attack in any case.

De Jong was his usual bullish self, dependable and safe on the ball and dominant in the tackle. He even went the whole game without a booking. Just another performance to add to a catalogue of similarly reliable displays. Montolivo was not his usual self but it is to be expected as he slowly returns from injury. One dangerous backpass and a few misplaced passes in attack aside he was dependable on the ball though often very conservative apart from the build up to the goal. Consistently found Bonera with his cross field balls but his ability to influence our play on the counter was limited by El Shaarawy's absence, Menez's movement and the absence of our first choice fullbacks to push up the field. Poli was excellent however he really should have buried his chance to make it 3-0 and finish off the game completely. It was the only blemish on his performance however. Excellent on the ball, protected his fullback wonderfully, showed quick thinking in attack and took one for the team with a necessary professional foul to stop Higuain on the counter. After a lengthy absence from the starting line up, this was the perfect way to remind Inzaghi of his use.

Honda, as mentioned, can never be accused of not working hard. A willing runner however his attacking influence has certainly been limited of late. Whenever Bonera plays at right back he must occupy a much wider position in order to maintain our width however he does so at a personal cost. Abate's near constant presence down the right flank allows Honda to drift inside or in behind his fullback however in his absence he's typically picked the ball up in a far deeper position and had less space in which to operate. One can't criticise his efforts however he's unfortunately limited in what he will achieve when given too great a burden. He did well to create an opportunity for Montolivo with a cut back though he might have done better to find Bonaventura in the box in injury time.

Jack himself was excellent and is rightfully endearing himself to the fans. He's not a dominant force but he's settling very well into our attack whether it be on the wing or in midfield, though I must say I still prefer him in the latter position. A goal and an assist was a just reward for his efforts.

Inzaghi's substitutions were frustrating as always, with El Shaarawy surely deserving some time. That any was wasted on Essien continues to leave me exasperated. He deserves credit however for overseeing an important result that has us just two points off that much coveted third sport. The real test however will be next week. Avoiding defeat to Roma is a precious way to differentiate ourselves from our competitors for third spot but more importantly to continue to build our side's belief and develop some consistency.
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Post by Dante Mon Dec 15, 2014 4:35 pm

Well said m8 . My 2 cents on Armero and De Jong .

First of all i agree with what you said on Armero . I just think Armero needs a few games more for his performances to be 100% meaningfull and that goes for both the good and bad of his play . He needs time . But again , not to say what you said there isn't correct . I fully agree , i am just willing to give him some room for the time being . He has only a few games under his legs so far and we're in December. What we currently see is not his best and we certainly haven't seen his worst yet , let's not forget that ! Although , there are things that you described from the game that go regardless of form . His cross for instance , not terrible but certainly , one won't be impressed often . But again , it's normal he doesn't play with 100% confidence and in form . Not to make him any favours , i'm just taking Armero's case with a pinch of salt , untill he has played a certain amount of games. So far so good i would say , but i don't think he has what it takes to bench De Sciglio , even in his most incosistent period at Milan so far.

As for De Jong . It was a surprisingly quiet game for him . I saw things that De Jong would normaly do being done by Poli and even Montolivo , tackling and man-marking Higuian outside the box. First half he was playing a bit deeper to collect the ball , yet Montolivo took the torch as the game went on and that left him practically out of position and use at that moment in time , a player with nothing to contribute at said moment. I didn't see De Jong try and contribute to the wings either , not consistently at least. Napoli's pressing might have scared him a little last night , i didn't see his ferocious kind of performance by any means.

2nd half , he also lost the ball at one moment mid-way into it and had it not been for the team's general defensive awareness last night , it could have proved costly . I generally didn't like how he went quiet last night , but i am willing to concede on that point , maybe the team's overall focus on defending minimized his effect on the game , but in the end , it was a particularly 2nd-fate-game for his standards. He went without booking yes , during the game though , time passed by and i didn't see him often getting involved on the ball , sometimes i would forget he was playing . Perhaps Poli and Montolivo shared the collective workload a tad too much and De Jong wasn't accustomed to it after such a long time giving everything , but in general lines , i don't think he played his usual self last night. He didn't do bad either , it just feels he did few to impact the game in any way and the game overlooked him for that. I wouldn't put him in any of the best or worst performances . One of the most anonymous games he has been in , imo .

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Post by Kaladin Mon Dec 15, 2014 7:05 pm

Our defenders (potentially) available next game: Mexes, Zapata, Armero, Zaccardo and Albertazzi

Loss is certain.
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Post by M99 Mon Dec 15, 2014 7:11 pm

El Shaarawy wrote:Our defenders (potentially) available next game: Mexes, Zapata, Armero, Zaccardo and Albertazzi

Loss is certain.


Constant can play LB.

Loss is indeed certain.
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Post by dostoevsky Tue Dec 16, 2014 12:54 am

I certainly understand what you mean Dante, though in this case I feel it's partly the old adage about defensive midfielders, that when you don't notice them they've put in a good performance. You're certainly right that he didn't have as much work to do defensively due to the contributions of those beside him however when called upon I can't recall him being beaten. Instantly recovered the ball for our side after Montolivo's wayward backpass and during the first period when we were under pressure and struggled to keep the ball in Napoli's half he regularly moved into the right space to provide a release ball if necessary but also gave Mexes and Rami the opportunity to feint their way out of trouble which they did on a regular basis, something they couldn't do in isolation. Not his most influential game again but I was simply trying to evaluate what he was called upon to do. Against a lesser opponent, one might want De Jong to have taken greater initiative on the ball given that his duties were being well shared with Montolivo and Poli however given the nature of our opponent he was likely under orders to risk little in terms of offensive movement. I still think it can be called a reliable performance though. Did what he was asked to, even if he wasn't so often asked.
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Post by dostoevsky Tue Dec 16, 2014 1:04 am

El Shaarawy wrote:Our defenders (potentially) available next game: Mexes, Zapata, Armero, Zaccardo and Albertazzi

Loss is certain.

Wouldn't surprise me to see Poli play at right back if we recover no one else in time.

Poli---Zapata---Mexes---Armero

Ironically, last season, Zapata played his best game all year against Roma and Urby - our past Armero - played the game of his life, though that was at home. Mexes tends to rise to the occasion against his old club as well.

False hope rises hmm
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Post by Forza Tue Dec 16, 2014 1:18 pm

M99 wrote:
El Shaarawy wrote:Our defenders (potentially) available next game: Mexes, Zapata, Armero, Zaccardo and Albertazzi

Loss is certain.


Constant can play LB.

Loss is indeed certain.

Constant?
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Post by Abramovich Thu Dec 18, 2014 12:54 pm

Why can't you sack Pippo, sorry but he's not good enough.
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Post by Il Diavolo Thu Dec 18, 2014 5:49 pm

Abramovich wrote:Why can't you sack Pippo, sorry but he's not good enough.

Sacking him right now would be an incredibly stupid decision. It's way to early to judge him. This is his first time managing a team on this level and mistakes were expected (and he made mistakes). But he has also shown some good signs (bringing the team together and getting the best out of the players). The earliest any decision can be made on Pippo has to be at the end of this season.

Also, lets not forget that our team (even though it is slightly better then last season) is still full of scrubs and mediocre players) and you can't put all the blame on Pippo. He is inexperienced and needs time. I don't think anyone expected him to work miracles and lead us to the top of the table, especially with this squad.

He has made his fair share of mistakes, but like I said, it's way too early to judge him right now.
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