Roma v Milan Post-Match Comments

Now things get interesting. The meltdown at Milan behind the scenes is nearing it’s pinnacle, and with 3 matches left in the season and the derby next, pressure will only increase as the quest for the Europa League continues. Add cameras and this would be Italy’s next hit reality show.

To begin, Milan were comprehensively beaten by a Roma side missing three essential pieces in Benatia, Destro and Strootman.

Mario plays extremely poorly by the standards of the Sky Italia team and most of those watching the match. Mario is subbed off early by Seedorf, who opts not to keep him on with Pazzini in the search for a goal. “Why?” he asks Seedorf as he’s subbed off. Later on cameras pick him up sitting on the edge of the dugout, dejected and upset while waiting for the final whistle.

Let’s be clear, if there was a unified front for Mario’s well-being and the desire to protect him, as Seedorf had mentioned he wanted to do, then he wouldn’t have been sent to do a Sky interview after one of his worst performances. Mario never reacts well to criticism from others, he finds it silly for you to be commenting on him and critiquing him when he does it most. Balotelli should never have been in front of those microphones. But he was, and that’s a huge failure on the part of the club.

So Mario shuts down on-air, but before then did give an interesting point on how he’s still not getting service in the box and has to come back to get it. Seedorf has even put in 3 #10s in his formation and you would think in part that would help Mario get the ball in the box more, but it didn’t. The players are not of enough quality, the poor habits of several years built up are tough to get rid of, and the club seems to be casting doubt not only over each and the players, the manager, the front office, and even the ownership stake or minority stake in the organization. But play champagne football lads, you need to beat Roma or Seedorf is out. Five wins in a row isn’t bad, but nine is even more impressive, Milan were against a superior side in every sense of the word. And this is Silvio’s fault, this is Galliani’s fault, this is Braida, but more than any of them this is a collective failure of an organization that hasn’t modernized in time while saying “times are tough” and we are in solidarity with the peoples in these tough times. Well except for Silvio, who increased his personal fortune by 3 billion, while complaining about the Monadori fine of 550m and drifting further away from the club he used to be passionate about.

Seedorf doesn’t have total support of the locker room. Galliani doesn’t like Seedorf. Berlusconi isn’t convinced by Seedorf despite being the one to personally call for him. This is in the open because of a series of leaks that have been going on for months now. Seedorf refuses to comment on his own future, saying it’s up to the club (and more recently outwardly says what’s obvious – up to Galliani).


Why? Because a manager’s  duties are more than just managing the side on the pitch. He’s gotten results yes, but against poor sides and mixed results against better clubs. One could argue he has this side achieving to the level they should (they’re not top 5 material) after the previous manager lost his grip in the middle of the season. But there are things that you could imagine the disorganized club of Milan wouldn’t want the manager talking about: say shaking up ¾ of the squad or complaining about his predecessor’s control of the squad. You get the feeling Seedorf wouldn’t take the stream of free-transfers and cut-rate deals the same way Allegri did for years, and why would he? The coach is always the first one to go for the sins of a club, and even if the problem is larger than his influence, he’s going to be responsible for it. Why keep quiet?

What’s happening is that some people are making some serious money behind the scenes. Galliani’s transfers with Preziosi have reached such ridiculous levels that there has to be kickbacks or Forte dei Marmi benefits that aren’t known. Silvio is making money hand-over-fist and has his own problems to deal with before he devotes the last .2% of his attention to Milan enough to appoint Barbara and failing to remove Galliani earlier in the year.

But what Seedorf does control are the matches (to a certain extent, of course) and the next one against Internazionale is certainly the most important match of the season, for pride, for the Europa League (no no no no no) and for his job.

Sanity doesn’t seem to be prevailing in Milan right now, unless the sane thing from a management perspective is to keep things as dysfunctional as they are now, and to turn a profit, perhaps. Barbara Berlusconi said the p-word with regards to Milan, and when clubs start talking about making money and not winning titles, the business of football has been distorted. Because it’s not business, it’s passion, it’s sport, and sport is not a very good business. They may look to operate in a similar manner, but treating a sport like a business means that business people think they have sporting knowledge. And that’s how you get Matri.


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About Pete Acquaviva

Pete writes about Milan on this blog. Occasionally other things. You would know which of them it is if you've gotten this far.

2 Thoughts on “Roma v Milan Post-Match Comments

  1. RossoneriFido on April 26, 2014 at 11:33 AM said:

    That was cold Pete but very true. Silvio doesn’t care one bit about Milan anymore cause he knows that this Milan is his doing. He wants to sell for around 1 Billion and no one is stupid enough to accept such an exaggerated price. So it seems we are stuck with a selling / free transfer mercato most probably Balotelli will be gone. Speaking of Balotelli and the three “#10” he is better than them all in play making .They work as individuals while he is always searching for opportunities for himself or others. I hope we don’t lose to Inter cause that will be very hard to process. I don’t believe we are capable of qualifying for Europe. Hopefully I am right.
    Forza Milan

  2. Sambit on April 26, 2014 at 6:10 PM said:

    Awesome article!!!

    I kinda felt the win loss situation going into the Derby would be similar to what it is way back in Feb when I was looking for our run in. And I have a bad bad feeling about the Derby itself (will be very happy with a draw)

    I completely agree that Milan is in meltdown, Silvio is far far away from the club and is looking to sell. As far as Silvio is concerned, he thought Barbara would be able to handle Milan and probably pushed her in whenever he did. But I think Barbara is also disinterested now and according to Gazzetta is looking to enter mainstream politics. And I think it was Barbara instead of Silvio who had more of a hand in appointing Seedorf (despite continuous statements for the reverse). Galliani is looking for autonomy and therefore is pushing for Pippo to replace Seedorf. in terms of the politics going on at Milanello this winter’s acquisitions are very instructive:
    1. Rami and Honda were regarded as safe bets and were arranged while Max was still here. Therefore, Galliani expected them to be reasonably safe bets and that’s what has happened so far
    2. Taraabt and Essien were negotiated after Seedorf’s arrival and were considered gambles/replacements for the existing squad and not essentially upgrades. That Taraabt has performed is an outlier.

    The path of least resistance keeping the best for the club at heart is for Silvio to sell 100% at a reasonable price (500MM for equity and 250MM for the debt) and allow the new owner to restructure our operations. But the main problem with this is Silvio’s public image amongst Milan fans would deteriorate amidst an admission of errors and failures

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