NOTE: Berlusconi and Galliani, the 2 guys who make all the big decisions at AC Milan will be referred to as B&G in this post.
Another summer of uncertainty looms over Milan now as B&G do their best impression of the local clowns as Milan becomes more and more of a circus than umm… the world’s most successful club that it rightfully is.
Either ways, a review of Milan’s summer activity so far.
Of course the big talking point is the arrival of our new coach – Massimiliano Allegri. Whether he’s the right man is still up for debate. On the plus side, he’s done a great job at Cagliari. His 4-3-1-2 clearly worked there and in his 2 seasons with them, he won the Panchina d’Oro (Golden bench) both times (a prize awarded to the best Serie A football manager according to other managers’ votes).
Allegri - the new man in charge
Allegri is a brave, courageous man who will hopefully infuse Milan with some much needed energy and creativity. On the downside though, much to the ire of many Milan supporters, Allegri is no big name. Whereas people were expecting the likes of Cappello, Lippi (is he still a big name?), Trapattoni et all, the board have appointed someone who has never really won anything. Even as a player, Allegri never plied his trade with the biggest of clubs, so yes, he has no experience whatsoever of handling big names. But that’s done and we’re simply going to have to accept Allegri and hope for the best.
I, for one, never really wanted Leonardo to leave. Agreed, he did make his fair share of mistakes throughout the season, but it’s incredible how he took this Milan side to within a point of first place in the table and eventually a third place finish. Apart from that, he was loved by the players and if it had not been for a poor start, where Leo was familiarising himself with his players and experimenting with the formation, we might’ve even won the Scudetto!
He endeared himself to the fans and was a class act. What I liked most about him was that he was calm, composed and relaxed at all times, never the one to get all Mourinho-ish on the sidelines and kick bottles around in fury – and this trait clearly passed on to his players.
I still remember the match against Madrid at Bernabeu, where Milan were a goal down and the commentator said (can’t remember his exact words): “Milan are a goal down away from home, yet they seem so relaxed. So calm and composed on the ball, you wonder if they are a goal down or one up for that matter”
We would eventually go on to win the match 3-2. Incredible stuff!
Most of all he refused to be B&G’s bitch. He never received their support -Galliani called him a ‘pig-head’ in public and our dear Berlusconi claimed that he could have coached Milan to the Scudetto (Honestly I want him to try and I’ll worship him for the rest of my life if he can better Leo’s third place). Which is why Leo deserves every inch of respect he gets, and more. I think as the season progresses, all those who criticized Leo will find out how hard his job was and how much of an impressive feat his 3rd place finish actually is. Good luck to him and I hope he’s appointed as Brazil’s coach.
That apart, there’s the case of Ronaldinho. A whole cloud of confusion surrounds him and though B& G have made their ‘love’ for the man pretty clear, reports rumours flow in everyday about Flamengo and a host of other clubs showing interest in him in response to Milan setting a price in the range of 10 million or the likes.
Selling ‘Dinho does the club good in a lot of ways. Firstly, it represents a substantial save on expenses. If the Milan board are willing to sanction his release by buying out his remaining year, they could end up saving €16 million. He’s also entering the last year of his contract and for all we know, he might leave as a free agent next summer – which is why the board has to evaluate how useful he will be this season. And that’s where Allegri comes into the picture. Allegri favours the 4-3-1-2 formation, which he used in his time at Cagliari and he employs a classic trequartista. ‘Dinho can’t play in the 4-3-1-2 as a trequartista (or as a CAM) even if his life depended on it (as Leo found it out the hard way last seasons). ‘Dinho plays best when deployed as a left-forward in a 4-3-3 and it’s hard to see him fitting in Allegri’s formation, unless he fights for a starting spot as a striker.
That’s really the whole deal about the Ronnie of today – he’s one dimensional in ways.
You’d think he should fit in a central role with ease in the same way Ronaldo and Messi are just as effective from the centre as the wings, but sadly that’s just not the case.
Either ways, I’m not going to dwell into ‘Dinho’s case anymore, simply because all I have is rumours and even some ‘official’ rumours (whatever the hell that is).
Then there’s the case of Oddo’s contract being renewed (NOTE: Milan have not announced the move officially), which has been met with disgust among most all Milan fans. Oddo’s original contract, wherein he was being paid 3 Million per year expires next season. Milan reportedly have extended his contract for 1 more year till 2012, but with the 3 million now spread out over the 2 years, which means we will be paying him 1.5 million a year, for the next 2 seasons. So, if Milan can loan him or sell him to some other club by next season, we will have pocketed the 1.5 million of his contract’s last year! So in effect, by extending his contract for 1 more year but spreading out his 3 million over the next 2 years, Milan profit by 1.5 million(if we sell him)!
Smart move, but of course the loophole being, we have to find someone willing to buy this useless sack. One guy I knew was like we’d have to actually pay other clubs 1.5 million to force them to buy Oddo from us!
And finally, our transfers this season?
Milan made the masterstroke of selling Storari to Juventus *facepalm* and bought Marco Amelia from Genoa. The brightest spot being Milan have released Dida, so we will no longer have to read the following line in post-match reports: “All was well until Milan conceded a goal after a blunder by the calamitous Dida.”
No seriously, for every 5 world class saves he makes, he literally gifts a goal back. I’d rather see him score an own goal, but some of the mistakes he makes… good God!
That said, he won 2 CL titles with us and we will always respect and love him for that!
Milan have signed Mario Yepes(from Chievo) and Sokratis Papastathopoulos(he’s asked us to call him Papa, bless his soul!).
Both of them can play as central defenders, with Papa claiming he can fill in at right-back if necessary. Yepes was a free transfer, while Milan had to initially pay €5 million along with Albertazzi, Oduamandi and Strasser to Genoa for Papa, but after Albetazzi decided he wanted to stay at Milan, the price increased to €6.3 million.
Milan also bought Crotone defender, Elia Legati, only to loan him out, along with David De Gennaro to Pandova, on co-ownership. Talking about co-ownership, Milan have loaned out a host of players to other clubs, including the highly promising Paloschi. Hopefully, Milan does makes use of it’s co-ownership on these players and brings them back to Milan later.
All said and done, Milan have to generate funds by selling players who are clearly past it. The likes of Jankulovski, Kaladze can’t even last 90 minutes any more, let alone half a season. Kaladze last season was warming the benches and even whined about how Milan “owes him” and complained about how he was not getting a starting spot. He does all this and gets paid 4 million a year….WHAT?! He’s garbage and we don’t need someone who does not love and respect the club. Ambrosini has been appointed captain of Milan for the season. Good luck to him; he’s someone who genuinely loves the club. I’ve always liked him because he respects the team crest on the front more than his name on the back! Forza Ambrosini!
Finally, Fly Emirates will be our new sponsor for the 2010-11 season and our new outfit is already out (will be uploaded soon). Milan will be taking part in the Emirates Cup and we will be playing against Arsenal and Lyon, on 31 July and 1 August respectively.
Let’s hope Allegri kick-starts an era of promise at the club. Forza Milan!