Monday, November 23, 2009

open sesame

Marco Borriello

AC Milan 4 Cagliari 3
For all those who think that Italian football is boring, think again. I would suggest you start watching the likes of Milan and Genoa more often. A real treat. Deschamps has stated that AC Milan have the best attack in Europe. Though that is a minor exaggeration going by the evidence of what we say at the Nou Camp yesterday, its not far from the truth. We did score 4 against a gritty Cagliari team, who have won 4 on the trot prior to this game.

Borrielo had a disappointing outing against Lazio, but was still given the nod in this game. But he didn't disappoint again. Seedorf started a move and finished it, after Borriello demonstrated some unique strength and balance before setting up the veteran midfielder. AC Milan were flirting with danger employing a high defense line, and were nearly punished when Dida brought down Matri in the box. Ghosts of the past revisited the Meazza when Matri, a Milan youth product, scored from close range as Kaladze took some time off to snooze. We were not able to handle the crosses piling into our box, and Cagliari's second seemed inevitable. The game was uncharacteristically open and resembled the end-to-end football seen so often in England. Cagliari's second was due to an Italian circus in the Milanese box. The Rossoneri defense was just collapsing over one another as Lazzari blasted past a hapless Dida. Pato's crossing in the game was dismal, and the same can be said about the rest of the team. We didn't have to wait too long though, to get back into the game. Pato's exceptional header was blocked by Marchetti, but only to fall to Borriello's head, as the target man scored the easiest goal of his life. 2 minutes later, we took the lead again. Borriello was involved in hold up play. He synced with Ronaldinho, whose supreme pass split the defense and was finished viciously by Pato. That marked the end of a thrilling first half, in which we saw 5 goals being scored.

AC Milan's attacking machinery was very well oiled, and was threatening with its razor sharp passing, and firing. A classic counter, resulted in a penalty as Borriello was brought down in the box by Astori. Notice Marco's involvement yet again. Ronaldinho stepped up and dispatched the penalty with tremendous authority. 4-2. Cagliari hit back spontaneously, with substitute Nene slotting past Dida after an impressive, pacy build up. The back-four just didn't have the legs to handle the speed of the Isolani. Our high defense line and lack of liveliness for resistance was largely the reason for the defensive catastrophe. Also our ineptitude of handling crosses and high balls can be credited. Shows how appalling our defensive training is. However, there are positives. These kind of performances will attract the eyeballs. And if we can attack for large periods we can use that as our defense, just how Arsenal/Barcelona do. It will take some time to get there, but we will hopefully. Borriello, certainly the man of the match. He was involved in all 4 goals, and he displayed the strength that target men are supposed to exercise during the course of the game. His balance and movement too was notable. Pato and Ronnie are thriving in their respective roles. Dida is having the time of his life as Abbiati recovers. Lets pray the magic continues in midweek too.

Scorers -
AC Milan - Seedorf 6', Borriello 38', Pato 40', Ronaldinho pen 62'
Cagliari - Matri 9', Lazzari 30', Nene 68'

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