AC Milan were on the brink of their first defeat of the 2020/21 Serie A season but a double from star left-back Theo Hernandez saved their blushes.
The Rossoneri drew 2-2 with Parma on Sunday evening and maintained top spot in the Italian league but it seemed that the point was not going to come at all.
Luck was on the Ducali’s side and going against the Diavolo. Parma had scored with their only two shots on target for the game with Hernani and Jasmin Kurtic finding the back of the net while the frame of the goal also kept them in the match.
Since Opta has been collecting data from the 2004/05 Serie A season, AC Milan became the first team to hit the woodwork three times in a half. Brahim Diaz was denied with a bending shot and then Hakan Calhanoglu was denied twice.
To make things worse for the Turkish international, he also hit the crossbar with a shot in the second half, becoming the fourth player since 2004/05 to hit the frame of the goal three times in a Serie A match.
The other three were Messina striker Arturo Di Napoli in 2005 against Sampdoria, Roma winger Mohamed Salah in 2016 against Bologna, and Lazio striker Ciro Immobile in 2017 also against the Felsinei.
Due to this misfortune, AC Milan have hit the woodwork more times than anyone else in Serie A so far in 2020/21, with 11 shots.
Despite this bad luck in front of goal, the Rossoneri pursued in their search for goals and they were rewarded thanks to an unlikely source.
Theo Hernandez has earned plaudits for his attacking play down the left flank, but the full-back scored both Milan goals, and he became the first Diavolo defender since the great Alessandro Nesta in October 2009 against Chievo to get a brace in a Serie A match.
With that draw, the Rossoneri have avoided defeat in the first 11 league matches in season for the first time since 2003/04, when they went on to win their 17th scudetto.
They have gone unbeaten in 12 home matches in Serie A for the first time since 2013, and after Spanish side Atletico Madrid suffered a 2-0 defeat to city rivals Real Madrid in La Liga, AC Milan are the only team in Europe’s Top Five leagues to still be unbeaten after the COVID-19 lockdown.
HERNANI NEARLY INSPIRED UNLIKELY PARMA VICTORY
Parma are 14th in Serie A after 11 matches with just 11 points but the heroics of the Brazilian midfielder Hernani almost inspired the Ducali to just their third league victory of the season.
His goal in the 13th minute was the fastest goal scored by a Crociati player against AC Milan in Italy’s top flight since Antonio Cassano scored in the ninth minute in March 2014. ‘FantAntonio’ went on to score another goal as the Emilia-Romagna side went on to win 4-2.
Hernani has scored all three of his Serie A goals in away fixtures but the match against AC Milan was the first time that he has provided an assist and scored in the same game.