Neto – Could do little about the perfectly struck free kick. Had a couple of saves to make which were comfortably taken or repelled. Not as vocal as Buffon and I cannot help but feel he lacks presence and communication with the defence at the back. More likely the case is that I am so accustomed to Santo Buffon that any other seems a mere shadow, an unwanted imposter. 6.5
Bonucci – Made some smart challenges and kept Belotti on his toes and away from goal. Also should have scored when gifted an opening in the box. Glad to see him through the game unscathed. 6.5
Benatia – Again I find myself leaning towards avoiding the purchase option. For the Moroccan just never seems fully sharp. Obviously without regular games this will happen, and he is solid in the air and hard to pass, yet it bothers me to ponder he will remain ahead of Rugani in the pecking order. He is not worthy of that. 6.5
Asamoah – A little hard done by on several decisions, especially the one which led to the goal for the visitors. His game in the final third was made far harder than usual given the lack of mobility and pace of Mandzukic. 6
Lichsteiner – Huffed and puffed, forced a solid save from Hart yet looked out of sync with his team-mates. 6
Khedira – Missed a gilt edged opportunity to score from 6 yards out, yet kept the ball moving well and did his best to make up the numbers up top. Neither brilliant or particularly poor. 6
Rincon – Still working his way into the fold, yet produced several superb challenges and showed a threat sporadically in the box with eagerness to get on the end of moves. 6.5
Cuadrado – Appalling. His worst performance since 2016. Perhaps he was unhappy to have been dropped for the Monaco tie? Such is his sensitive little soul. Regardless of the reasons, Juan was awful in and out of possession. 4
Sturaro – I am always happy to see him play yet the LM position simply does not suit his natural skill-set in any way which is useful for the team or his own development. He drifts inside too much, leaving gaping holes on the left for opponents to attack and is not adept at hold up play, in the air or dribbling. He is a central midfielder. Why not give him a chance at the base of midfield where he can use his zeal to hustle and bomb forward? 5
Dybala – Created a beautiful opening for Sami, failed to finish when played in one on one with Hart and very much missed his fellow Argentine. 6.5
Mandzukic – If ever there was a reminder why we require a CF of stronger calibre to back-up and challenge Higuain it was this game. Mario toiled hard as always, yet wasted several chances to open the account for the home side. He lacks pace, his finishing is haphazard and he was too easily marshalled by a team whose defensive record is one of the worst in the league. 5
Higuain – Brought on to rescue the game, and after missing a couple of chances he thankfully came good in the final moments, despatching a smart drive from just outside the box to level the game with seconds to spare. 7
Pjanic – Facing a Torino side adopting a siege mentality, Miralem had little to aim for with his passes, yet did manage to up the tempo of our haphazard attacking verve. 6.5
With eight changes to the starting XI which excelled in the french principality just a few days back, it came as no surprise to find our play disjointed and reliant upon moments of individual quality.
We were unimpressive, laboured on the ball and our finishing, converting just 1 chance of the 10 created was a return to our form pre-February. A defeat would have been harsh and a terrible way to destroy our indomitable home record of an unbeaten run which stretches back to 2015.
Allegri is a manager to likes to take risks. More often than not they come off, but last night he was almost caught out. My own stance is to play your best team always, other than perhaps before a champions league final. We are 2 up against Monaco and although I understand the need to rest key players and keep the squad as a whole sharp, eight changes proved too much for the free flowing, entertaining football we have become accustomed to over these last few months to continue. This was the derby, with our cross town rivals always likely to fight like berserkers. To hold on for so long with ten men was a laudable feat, though they were helped by our profligacy.
Mandzukic, Cuadrado and Sturaro were wretched and a performance like this erodes our confidence when we should be gaining momentum, powering our way to the title with games to spare rather than sauntering, assuming we need simply turn up to claim victory.
We lacked leadership on the field. Alongside cohesion.
I can understand a brief lull after such excitement in France and many of the players will have their heads focused on the match next Tuesday and hopefully the final in Cardiff. It is up to Allegri to ensure that they remain focused. We cannot afford to slip up in the league and must get the job done next weekend in the capital.
There are quality gaps in the squad. Which can only be addressed in the Summer. Until which, we can but hope and pray that Higuain above all others remains fit. For he is a vital component of any success we can achieve.
Mihajlovic has not changed from his playing days. He was an overly aggressive prick then and displays the same absence of dignity and class now in a suit. A natural brute of a man who should be punished for attempting to man handle the officials and brought into line by Cairo for his post match comments aimed at Vialli. It does nothing but turn away potential fans to witness such uncouth behaviour.
A quick note on the red card…which for me was the right decision. If you touch the ball first and brutally follow through with your studs on a player’s ankle, it is a foul which warrants a yellow card. The instructive word here is control. Which was lacking when Acquah scythed through Mandzukic. Boye in turn was a disgrace; spiteful and petulant throughout. As is often the case, the players reflect the personality of the coach.
Onwards to Tuesday and hopefully upwards…
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Too harsh on pjanic mate, made a brilliant pass, the timing and accuracy of it were near perfect. Gonzalos goal was even better, on the turn from distance and through the defenders legs. This was mostly our B team so I wouldn’t stress it, it’s a decent result.
He got one of the highest ratings, my friend! So I am lost in terms of what you mean other than you mention this every time I rate pjanic…Seems a given to find after each report! He did nothing exceptional, helped improve our attacking.
Other than which, up above…Schick seems more a cf able to roam which is exactly what we need. Mario’s finishing has never been clinical. Unless lots of high balls played into the box by a side.
Keita might do for the flank.
And of course tolisso or Bring Home Marco!hohoho! I’d like them both, with lemina and Rincon out. Sturaro is a box to box cm not LM. Still feel the club have high enough opinion of him to retain.
Would be perfect to win the title in Rome..
Hope all is fine and dandy in your realm…
(Typed from the train to work as I struggle to stay on half a,seat due to a huge woman next to me…the obese should pay extra, fat tax. Might seem harsh, but if they use more space then why not pay more
The assist to the goal wasn’t exceptional? I’m not sure I have as high standards then, in my opinion games are determined by a moment of brilliance and pjanic provided that with the perfect long ball that higguain hurried. I just don’t think you give him enough credit, he’s had so many highlight moments all season yet the bar seems to be somewhere in the stratosphere. Not giving you flack but he’s been the best middfilder for us, just don’t think he’s given enough credit.
Not quite what I would call a long ball, mate…It was a straight, direct pass, of 20 yards if that! He thought quick, brought the ball down well but it was hardly a Pirlo flick of genius! It was what I expect of a decent ball playing midfielder, not out of the ordinary or anything to make me widen my eyes with a gaping mouth of astonishment…
I am as happy with Miralem as I am with Sami. Mainly since the change in formation. Both have done well enough in their respective roles. I do however feel that Pjanic can improve, yet given this is a new role for him, his progress is fine.
If roma lose today, do we then only need one point to win the scudetto?
We need one point regardless what Roma did. As long as we don’t lose to them next week, the Scudetto is ours
we have crotone game after rome, so , scudetto is basicly ours
Yeah it is pretty much ours as it is, only if we lose 3 and Roma/Napoli win 3 would we lose it. Not going to happen!
I think we’ll coincidentally lose against Roma just to fuck with Napoli, then win against one of the other two.
Imagine the hell that would break loose if that happened, civil war between North and South would be the least of it!
But yeah, we could actually do that, we have Crotone indeed coming up after Roma
I would love it. A great opportunity for our dreaded Asamoah – Sturaro – Rincon – Lemina midfield to play balls to Kean. Also Rugani and Benatia needs more games too, they could use a match against a decent side. Audero also deserves a shot at it!
I agree, you should always play your best team. Get the goals, then make the subs. Over here Allegri did the opposite: conceded goals and then had to sub in the stars.
well, the future is great for bianconeri, these type of match shows us where to invest in next transfer period. For me there are 3 posts to be strengthened:
1- Winger, probably the most obvious one. We need LW player, if can play on both sides better, players like Doglas Costa, Asencio, Keita Balde. Talented but need to participate in defence as well.
2- Central midfielder, Sturaro, Lamina and General are not that convincing, Toliso looks good enough, but the dream signing… we all know who he is.
3- Striker, I would take a young talent as a backup for Higuain, the good thing is Higuain almost always plays and fortunately doesn’t get injured.
I still think Sturaro can become like Vidal, we just can’t seem to find a position for him. Defensively he is very good, offensively he provides nothing but you need those type of players on the field as well. Had really high hopes for Lemina but it looks like he is on the way out, probably to premier league at a profit. It will be interesting to see how we reinforce, I rather go after shick than balde. Sure we could use some help on the wings but keep in mind Pjaca is back next year.
Agreed, other than Sturaro has regularly provided something in the final third, chipping in with the odd goal, playing his part in team moves, when deployed regularly as a central midfielder, which is his natural role. And yes, he has always appeared most comfortable as a box to box midfielder, more muscle, less technique than Vidal, yet very similar model and movement.
Pjaca will not be back until 2018…and so we will replace him. Who can say if he will make a full recovery? Probably, yet it is not for certain. Some players, young and old, never fully return to their sharpness and pace, especially if explosive pace was part of their game.
I would acually agree with you on Mr Sensitive aka Cuadrado…As mentioned in the report. He really is a chap who needs to feel loved and safe and encouraged, else his form suffers instantly. Not sure he has a long term future at the club given his mental fragility. However, he has been generally very good since the turn of the year. Indeed, Alves is more secure and more potent in the final third as our RM.
Im 50 50 on the chance of signing him. He gave us valueable wins this years.All in all he deserves it. But not sure if the club wants to invest several millions in him.
For now we need him for sure
Ahhh! I am certain we are signing him. It is just structured in an strange format. We are paying 5m per season for a loan till 2019, when we can sign him for 25m minus the 10m we will have paid by then. An additional 4m for sporting triumph. So 25-30m seems okay, for he has been brilliant these last few months. I just wish his head didnt drop so easily!
I thought about your words poet i always do. Driving back home i thought. I worked so hard to be in this team in this position. I wanted this and achieved what was a dream. I am nearly there after many fought out football matches.I contributed to vital matches. I want to be there in the pitch fighting it out.
I was dropped and when i heard that anthem i was dissapionted.
I am Cuadrado.
Do you understand what i mean. I mean 90per cent of worldwide professional football players dont even smell the air the champions league bring.
When you are there you want to live it all. If dropped you feel it no matter how unsensitive you are