WINNING AT THE DEATH!

WINNING AT THE DEATH!

AC Milan hosted Atletico Madrid on match-day two of the UEFA Champions League. While the visitors drew last time around, the Rossoneri came into this looking to pick up their first points.

It was an even start over the first 10 minutes, as both sides looked to attack quickly when chances arose. Milan were getting forward more and more, however, and it was they who took the lead.

Rebic was set through on goal by Diaz and saw his shot come off Oblak to go behind for a corner. From the set-piece, the ball eventually found Diaz in the box again who took his time to find Leao who took a touch before arrowing the ball home.

 

 

The game soon turned sour for Milan at the half-hour mark. Kessie, who had already been booked for hauling back Llorente 15 minutes earlier, received a second yellow for stamping on Kondogbia’s foot.

The home side were down to 10-men with Atletico now sensing an opportunity to get level. Pioli brought on Tonali for Rebic while Simeone got Joao Felix from off the bench but Milan remained untroubled as the first half ended 1-0.

 

 

Atletico were dominating as expected in the beginning of the second half, with Suarez missing a free header in what was their best chance so far. Atletico were hogging the ball completely with Milan struggling to get out of their own half.

Nevertheless, there were no clear cut shooting chances on offer as they moved the ball around from wing to wing. As time went on, Los Rojiblancos were getting a bit desperate. Lemar’s shot from outside the box was well kept away by Maignan.

 

 

However, the resistance finally ended for Milan as a headed pass from Lodi was swept home on the volley by Griezmann for his first goal since his return. On the other side, Florenzi had a great chance to score immediately but pulled his shot wide.

 

 

Felix’s shot was palmed away by Maignan but Atletico were given a penalty to win it in the fourth minute of injury time after Kalulu was adjudged to have handled. Suarez took the penalty and scored down the middle to break Italian hearts right at the death as the visitors won out 2-1.

 

 

Here are the three key takeaways from the match:

 

RESILIENT MILAN FINALLY FALL

They were a bit unfortunate to lose against Liverpool last time, having played well enough. Milan were once again denied a second time around and even with a man down for more than an hour, they almost pulled it off.

The defence was resolute and unflinching as they hardly gave any free space for Atletico to exploit. Leao’s goal was brilliantly worked out and things were looking up till the red card.

 

 

Instead, they defended as a unit with the midfielders putting in a mammoth shift. Tonali and Bennacer were breaking up attacks all night long with the fullbacks tracking back every run. Pioli’s men almost had the win in their hands but a late goal from Griezmann and a late penalty ended their match.

 

BATTLING ATLETICO GET THE WIN

It was not the best of nights for Simeone and co. despite playing with a man majority for a long time. They were sloppy and disjointed going forward, with Simeone making all five changes just past the hour mark.

Felix gave no reason as to why he should be starting regularly and Lemar looked like a passenger since his coming on. Suarez missed two golden chances to equalize before the goal finally came through the boot of Griezmann.

 

 

Atletico pushed even further on as the game entered injury time with Felix testing Maignan but it looked like the win was not forthcoming. However, a dubious penalty deep into injury time allowed Suarez to make amends which he did as he scored to give Los Rojiblancos the win.

 

HARD GROUP TO CALL

Aside from Liverpool who picked up their second win, it is looking like it will take something really special for one of the rest to make through. Atletico were not at their best today while their defence has been leaking.

Milan struggled with 10-men but have the players to turn up the heat when necessary as time goes on. They were unlucky to concede that penalty but can take immense heart from another huge effort.

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