Shrugging off the controversy off the pitch, following the topsy-turvy esque nature of Adriano Galliani’s resignation, Milan players picked up a desperately needed 3-1 win at Catania on Sunday.
It was great to see the Rossoneri replicate their performance from the Champions League win over Celtic to Serie A and it seems that Massimiliano Allegri has finally turned the corner following a poor start to the new campaign.
Once again, Milan were left chasing the game but like the Milan sides of yesteryears, they rallied towards a very important win that could define their season.
Preview: Pressure still on for Allegri after five winless Serie A matches
The last time AC Milan won a Serie A match seems so long ago. A 1-0 victory over Udinese at the San Siro on October 19 was the last time the Rossoneri claimed three points in the domestic campaign.
With pressure mounting on Allegri and Galliani's departure, Milan are almost forced to emerge victorious on Sunday, when they take on last placed Catania.
Preview: Milan hoping to make a response after weekend disappointment
The Italian giants were acquainted with irate fans at the San Siro who refused to let the players leave the stadium following Milan’s 1-1 draw against ten men Genoa. After finishing last season on a high note the Rossoneri have begun the new season in peculiar fashion and their antics have seen them slip down to 13th place in the league table.
Milan took a lead early in the game but surrendered it soon and even though they had a lot of chances with Genoa down to ten men, Mattia Perin’s heroics between the posts denied Milan three points. Mario Balotelli in particular came under a lot of criticism, the former Manchester City who is known for his calmness in front of the goal, uncharacteristically failed to convert a penalty in the 36th minute which was the second time he has done so this season.
Preview: A potential last chance for Massimiliano Allegri
Things have not been going all that great for AC Milan, and it does not seems as if they are going to get better anytime soon. From 11 Serie A matches, the Rossoneri have taken only 12 points from a potential 33, leaving them 11th in the league table.
With only one win in their last five Serie A matches, Allegri's side could really use the full three points against Chievo.
Injuries have not made things much easier for the Italian manager, but their biggest problem has been keeping the ball out of their own goal. They have conceded 19 goals in 11 matches, with 13 of those goals coming away from the San Siro.
Preview: Barcelona can guarantee the knockout stage with a victory
Some would argue that AC Milan's current lot of players is not all that impressive. Others would even go as far as to say that this is one of, if not the worst Milan squad in years. Whether you agree with that or not, the truth is that they are three points from the relegation zone in Serie A.
On the European front, Allegri's squad has not lost from their three matches, and they find themselves second, two points behind Barcelona.
A draw at the Nou Camp would likely be welcomed from Allegri, who is under serious pressure.
Preview: A battle of Group H underdogs in Amsterdam
With Italian giants Milan struggling in the group, it seems like Ajax and Celtic both have a chance of creating an upset and reaching the Round of 16 in the 2013/14 UEFA Champions League. When the two teams will clash in the Netherlands this Wednesday, much will be decided.
Away fans will be hoping for Barcelona to grant them a favour by beating Milan at the Camp Nou in Group H's other game. Indeed, if the Rossoneri lose, Celtic would jump into the second position on six points with victory over Ajax. Meanwhile, the latter will be forced to surrender all hopes of making the knockout stages should they lose. Europa League football will however still be a possible target for the Dutch outfit.
Zero. That is the number of games that AC Milan have won on the road all season—both in domestic and continental competition. Sure, they’ve, oftentimes been fortunate to escape with a draw—their Champions League tie with Ajax and Serie A clash with Torino come to mind, but the Rossoneri have yet to secure all three points away from the San Siro.
And as if their 11th place standing wasn't bad enough, one should note that they’re currently on 12 points, which is just three above nine. That's the exact number of points that 18th-placed and relegation candidates Sassuolo have earned so far this season.
Preview: Hosts are desperate to get back to winning ways
Allegri's squad has had to deal with a number of injuries early on in the 2013/14 campaign, but either way, they have been extremely poor. Currently 10th in the Serie A standings, Milan runs the risk of possibly falling further down the ladder if they fail to win on Saturday.
They will enter the match having drawn their last fixture against Lazio. That 1-1 draw followed up a disappointing 3-2 defeat at Parma at the weekend.
With the pressure starting to build on Allegri, the Milan manager is starting to show some signs of concern.
Preview: Both sides seeking revival after disappointing start
Both Milan and Lazio have had difficult starts to the new season and will be hoping that a win on Wednesday can kick start their campaign. Hosts AC Milan after losing against Parma courtesy of a last ditch goal by Marco Parolo, have slipped down to tenth place in the league table.
Following the match coach Massimo Allegri singled out troubled striker Mario Balotelli for criticism, claiming that the Italian international failed to follow the instructions given out by the head coach.
Preview: Allegri will want to repeat last season's shock 2-0 victory
When both these sides met last February, not many people would have given the Rossoneri a chance at the three points. Fans filled the San Siro, hoping for a result that would send them home with a smile, and they got just that.
Goals from Kevin-Prince Boateng and Sulley Muntari sent the stadium into complete shock and excitement, even giving Mario Balotelli the chance to celebrate in the crowd amongst friends.
This time around, Barcelona is in great form, having won all their La Liga matches, with the exception of their latest against Osasuna. A scoreless draw at El Sadar eliminated Barca's chance of equaling Real Madrid's nine match win streak, but Gerardo Martino will be more focused on getting back on track Tuesday night.
Barcelona are set to reacquaint themselves with the fabled San Siro as they take on AC Milan on Tuesday. This is the seventh time these two sides have met in the past two years. The last time the Catalan giants were in Lombardy, it was a case of them running back to Catalonia with their tails between their legs, thanks to goals by Kevin-Prince Boateng and Sulley Muntari.
At that time, many thought that the defeat was the beginning of the end for Barcelona. The same team that was then considered to be fading away has now become a genuine Champions League contender while their victors are now struggling a lot domestically while being exploited by inferior opposition in Europe.
Preview: Mario Balotelli is the latest headache for the Rossoneri
While Balotelli may be a constant headache for the Milan management, due to his on and off the pitch antics, he handed the Italian outfit another setback.
Super Mario's injury will definitely be a big loss, given how many times he has come to the rescue for Allegri's side. Who will now step up and score goals for Milan in his absence? Could the pressure fall on the shoulders of one Alessandro Matri?
The former Juve forward will need to guide his new club past Udinese, who is eighth in the Serie A table, four spots and two points ahead of Milan.
Preview: Both clubs are struggling, but the Rossoneri are worst off
Both AC Milan and Juventus are two of the most historic clubs in Italian Football, but at the moment, they do not look like it.
The visitors have it much worst than Juventus at the moment. Allegri's side is full of injuries, and they have been unable to sort out their defensive issues. From six Serie A matches, the Rossoneri have conceded 10 goals, which leaves them with an average of 1.7 goals against per match.
With only one cleansheet in the current Serie A campaign, Allegri is hopeful that his defensive issues can get sorted out sooner rather than later. Going up against a Juventus side that has 11 goals and only four conceded could cause more headaches for the visitors.
The tie could not have come at a better time for Juventus, with Milan currently suffering from a number of injuries including their talismanic yet troublesome striker Mario Balotelli who will continue to serve his three match suspension as a result of a red card against Napoli.
However former Juventus forward Alessandro Matri who joined the Rossoneri back in August is set to lead the line along with Robinho against his former side. Even though the 29 year old is yet to open his goal account for his new club, he believes he can turn things around when his team faces Juventus and has further indicated that he will celebrate if he gets his name on the score sheet.
Preview: Experience could play a big part in this match
Ajax did not enjoy their opening match in the UEFA Champions League, having been defeated 4-0 against Barcelona. Since that defeat at the Nou Camp, the Dutch outfit has won twice and lost once, but AC Milan should pose them a bigger threat than Go Ahead Eagles did at the weekend.
A 6-0 thumping see's Frank de Boer's side come into their match on Tuesday with some added confidence. But do not be fooled, this Ajax side has talent, but experience could be a key factor in this competition.
Preview: Victory is a must for both the Rossoneri and their opponents
It is going to be another 90 minutes without Mario Balotelli for the hosts. The absence of the suspended Italian striker is not doing Milan any favours but it cannot be blamed much either. Without SuperMario, the Rossoneri still managed to net three goals in their last game. Their main problem turned out to be in defence.
What Allegri and his men have learned from that dramatic 3-3 draw away to Bologna is what Milan fans are hoping to see this Saturday at home to Sampdoria. Both sides are not having a dream start to their Serie A campaign.
Preview: Injuries and Balotelli's suspension would cause more frustration for Milan
Going into their home match against Napoli, the AC Milan players were fairly confident that they could overcome the odds. Now that the dust has settled from that match, Allegri's side may have had chances, but they were unable to capitalize, leaving them with a 1-2 defeat at the hands of Rafa Benitez's squad.
Adding to their defeat is the suspension of Mario Balotelli, who was shown a red card after the final whistle.
The Italian international not only will be missing in action for three matches, but he also missed his first penalty kick against Napoli. With Milan's already long list of absent players due to injury, Super Mario's suspension will have frustrated the Rossoneri manager.
Preview: AC Milan's list of injuries could play a part in this match
Although battered with injuries, AC Milan managed to come out of their mid-week match against Celtic with the full three points. A goal from Sulley Muntari and an own goal from Celtic's Izaguirre got the Italians off to a positive start, but they will face a tougher test on Sunday against Napoli.
Allegri's side have had to battle for every point due to key absences, and on Sunday they will have to do the same.
With Matias Silvestre, Kaka, Pazzini, Bonera, De Sciglio, El Shaarawy and Montolivo missing, the Rossoneri will have to once again dig deep if they want to knock off the current Serie A leaders. Apart from all the bad news, Allegri will likely welcome back Abate, Niang and Saponara from injury.
Preview: Milan begin Champions League campaign without Kaka and El Shaarawy
With Milan’s ongoing injury problems, Massimo Allegri has some task on hand as he is down to bare bones for Milan’s Champions League opener against Celtic.
The Italian side was already without the likes of Ignazio Abate, Mattia de Sciglio, Matias Silvestre, Daniele Bonera and Giampaolo Pazzini prior to their 2-2 weekend draw with Torino. Their injury crisis has worsened, losing three of their influential players in Kaka, El Shaarawy and Riccardo Montolivo all of whom are officially out of Wednesday’s tie.