Image Via: http://sempremilan.com
Milan haven’t lost a Serie A match since March 8th of this year and currently sit first in the league. There’s a good chance that they may not finish in first when it’s all said and done. However, here are three reasons why I think Milan currently sits in first in Serie A!
1. The Signing of Simon Kjaer
Image Via: http://acmilan.theoffside.com
When Milan announced the signing of Simon Kjaer in January of 2020, I never thought that he would be a huge part of Milan being undefeated since March. He’s a very talented defender. However, I never thought he’d make that much of a difference for Milan. Simon Kjaer previously played in Serie A for Palermo, Roma and Atalanta and came to Milan in January on a loan. In July, Milan made the move permanent only paying €3.5 million. So far, that looks like a steal. He has not only brought great defending to the club which was lacking at Milan for years, but he’s also provided leadership that you can’t teach. His style of defending has also provided balance to this Milan squad. He’s not a centre-back that lines to possess the ball and join in moving the ball into the opponent’s attacking half too often. However, he has eliminated the burden of defending that has plagued Milan for several seasons and has played solid. Many would probably argue that so far this season, he’s been Milan’s best defender and I’d have to agree. If the rossoneri end up winning the scudetto, the rest of the squad should pay for one of his meals, as he deserves it.
2. The Signing of Zlatan Ibrahimovic
Image Via: http://www.90min.com
When it was announced in December of 2019 that Milan would be signing the Swedish legend once again, I instantly thought that this was going to be a great signing for the squad and so far I’ve been right. Other than Zlatan’s salary, Milan didn’t have to pay any transfer fee for the lion. To say he’s been a great signing is a high understatement. So far, he’s been a world-class signing and a big reason why Milan is currently first in the league. It’s common knowledge that despite his age, Zlatan Ibrahimovic can still score. However, similar to Kjaer he had brought leadership and a winning mentality back to the club. It’s must be tough when a lot of players on the squad are over 10 years younger than you are, as the average age of the squad is 25, which is the youngest in Serie A. He has taken the lead for this squad, which like I just pointed out us not easy and leads them to currently sitting in first in the league. Currently, he’s injured. However, I guarantee that while he’s watching matches and training sessions he’s providing much-needed leadership off the field. When he does step back onto the field, I’m sure Milan’s squad will welcome that.
3. Stefano Pioli
Image Via: http://eurosport.com
When Stefano Pioli was hired as Milan’s interim manager last season, it was clear he had a mountain of work to get done. However, slowly the squad starting playing to the tactics of his liking and now he’s turned them into a Scudetto challenger this season in what almost seems like he did overnight. That’s how fast time has flown by. Anyways, he’s made a huge impact with his tactics. A big reason for this in my view has been because he’s willing to play the members of his squad in their preferred positions, especially in the attack. Calhanoglu is now playing his preferred number 10 as a central attacking midfield role and has thrived. Countless other players have played their best under Padre Pioli. He’s also got the best out of the likes of Bennacer, Kessie and others in the midfield. There’s no doubt he’s made a huge difference in the attitude and tactics of the squad. Even if they don’t win the scudetto leading the club to qualify for the Champions League once again would be remarkable. Let’s see if he can continue to consistently get the best out of this squad for the rest of the season.
The Scudetto race is far from over. But, Milan has shown they have the potential to win the trophy for the first time since 2011.
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