A spectacular late goal from Alessio Romagnoli gave AC Milan a 2-1 win over Genoa at the Stadio San Siro to send them fourth in the Serie A table.
In the rescheduled Round 1 match, Rossoneri coach Gennaro Gattuso decided to change the Milan formation for the third time in three games, though injuries to Davide Calabria, Giacomo Bonaventura, Mattia Caldara and Lucas Biglia somewhat forced his hand, with a 3-4-1-2 system deployed.
Suso opened the scoring early on with a lovely long range effort, but Christian Kouame, via Romagnoli, brought the game level just before the hour. Then just as it looked like Milan were going to have to settle for a point, club captain Romagnoli launched a ball into the net from 20 yards out.
Despite that, Milan are still searching for their first clean sheet of the season, as they also continue on their run of 16 consecutive matches conceding.
The change in set up did give Milan plenty of bodies in the final third and after just four minutes, Suso found space on the edge of the Genoa penalty area and placed a short into the top corner out of Andrej Radu’s reach.
Not that Genoa were discouraged by going behind so early with Christian Kouame having a go from distance, but it was easily saved by Gianluigi Donnarumma.
At the other end , Franck Kessie was played in by Suso, but could only hit the side netting from a tight angle.
A dangerous opportunity came the Griffon’s way midway through the first half, as Kouame’s cushioned header was met by Krzysztof Piatek, who flashed his shot just wide.
After the break, a Gonzalo Higuain shot deflected ova Domenico Criscito which forced Radu to tip the ball over the bar, then from the resulting corner the Genoa goalkeeper pushed a Romagnoli header away from goal.
Parity came after 56 minutes when Kouame pounced on a loose Tiemoue Bakatoko pass in the area and his speculative shot took a wicked deflection off Romagnoli and looped over Donnarumma into the net.
A stinging shot from Higuain was parried out by Radu, who then made another good stop from Kessie, before Calhanoglu flashed an effort inches wide.
Radu was again called into action, this time getting down low to push Suso’s curling strike away. Not to be outdone, Donnarumma was alert and got his fingertips on a Darko Lazovic drive.
Then right at the death, Radu made the mistake to come out and punch the ball clear, but it fell into the path of Romagnoli who hooked it in from the edge of the area.
ATTACK ATTACK ATTACK
Another change in system and another win for Milan. Cutrone and Higuain up front together again and this time Calhanoglu sitting behind with Laxalt on side and Suso on the other. That gave Milan plenty of options in the final third, and though chances were few, party due to Radu’s excellent goalkeeping, they had 28 shots, their most in a Serie A game since December 2017. That said, they movement of the ball is far too slow, and that is another point which Gattuso will need to work on. Milan are on the right path though.
A SHAMBLES AT THE BACK
Moving on from the attack, the defence is terrible and has now gone 16 consecutive matches without a clean sheet, for only the second time in Rossoneri history. Bakayoko was poor when protecting the backline, and on too many occasions they lose concentration, the centre-backs, Donnarumma, the full-backs, the midfield. Right now, Milan seem to be taking a ‘we will score more than you’ approach, which might work now, but won’t when the bigger sides come knocking.