AC Milan lost 1-0 to Porto on Tuesday evening leaving them without a single point from three games in their Champions League return.
A rare off-night performance-wise ended in defeat after Luis Diaz’s second-half strike found the back of the net and was enough to secure the win for the Portuguese team.
Time to worry about Milan’s Champions League form?
As disappointing as it is seeing Milan rooted to the bottom of Group B, it’s not time to panic just yet. The lacklustre display, especially in the attacking areas, is always difficult to digest when you see the talent available.
Losing away to Porto is never an embarrassment but their position in the group of course brings extra attention and criticism. Let’s not forget the previous two games were decided by the finest of margins and some questionable refereeing decisions.
Every team is allowed an off-night and Rossoneri fans can hope that was Milan’s on Tuesday, and that they can give the last three games all they have, to restore some pride for the fans who have waited seven years to watch Champions League action at the Stadio San Siro.
Milan’s three huge games against Porto, Liverpool, and Atletico Madrid
These last group games have now all become a free hit of sorts, as the odds are stacked against Milan qualification-wise but still not mathematically impossible. Milan now find themselves in the very same position as Atalanta did in 2019/20 – a position from which La Dea went on to draw once and win twice to qualify.
This should allow the players to play with more freedom and adopt a nothing-to-lose mentality. When the next game against Porto comes around Theo Hernandez, who is sorely missed, will return down that left-hand side. The two experienced strikers Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Olivier Giroud will have more match fitness in their legs as they have still only played a small amount of this season so far.
Stefano Pioli will be hoping his side can pick up some points so that if they fail to qualify they can bow out with their heads held high. His squad, over the last 18 months, have achieved progressed a lot. Their embarrassing tally in the Champions League so far doesn’t tell the whole story.