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Thursday May 2 2013
Does Mighty Max deserve Milan?

Milan’s victory over Catania came amid talk Coach Massimiliano Allegri could be on his way out. Luca Cetta examines the Clarence Seedorf rumours and wonders if a change is needed.

Milan’s fans shared their opinion of Coach Massimiliano Allegri on Sunday versus Catania with a simple message: “More respect for our Coach Allegri.” Likewise, Riccardo Montolivo offered a glowing response to a post-match question regarding the tactician. “A lot of the credit for the win goes to the Coach as he’s managed to find the right mix. He kept things together when we were in trouble and he brought us back. He’s a great tactician and I hope he stays here for the long-term.” Mattia De Sciglio was another to back him.

Allegri’s future has been called into question throughout the season. That he was close to the sack following Milan’s poor start is no secret. During the Rossoneri’s mini-slump – three matches without victory prior to Catania – his head returned to the chopping block. Still, with Fiorentina breathing down Milan’s neck it seems no Champions League means no more Allegri.

The Diavolo-related news of the day last Sunday was of Clarence Seedorf being named as a potential replacement. This is something, the Gazzetta dello Sport claimed, would be pushed through by President Silvio Berlusconi regardless of Milan’s final position. Allegri would then join Roma, with whom he’s been linked. It was a story reiterated by the Corriere dello Sport on Tuesday.

Adriano Galliani is said to be resistant, but did have this to say Sunday evening: “All those who made Milan history enter the conclave the day Allegri leaves. After that, who knows who will emerge as the new Pope?...The passion of the President for his great former champions is absolutely real and that applies to Seedorf as well as the other players who took this club to the top of the world, like Christian Panucci and Billy Costacurta.”

With that in mind – and putting aside unconfirmed reports of Roma talks – what exactly has Allegri done wrong in recent months? Yes Milan struggled immensely to begin 2012-13. Five of Milan’s eight losses occurred during the opening eight rounds. Their season looked over before it really began following a mass summer exodus. That wasn’t Allegri’s decision. Once he and the squad overcame the shock of losing such quality, they dug deep, settled into a rhythm and began their ascent up the ladder. Qualification for the Champions League was viewed as an outside chance at best. Now it’s a distinct possibility. That is thanks in part to the man on the bench.

They’ve clicked in the 4-3-3 formation, with Stephan El Shaarawy – and later Mario Balotelli – regularly amongst the goals, with Montolivo pulling the strings in midfield and Christian Abbiati, Philippe Mexes and Cristian Zapata eventually forming a solid defensive spine. Youngsters El Shaarawy and De Sciglio were given room to flourish. Others are to be integrated into the squad next season. While previously rigid in approach - tactically and personnel-wise - the one-time Scudetto winning Coach has proven anything but this term.

Assuming Berlusconi does wave goodbye to the Livorno native, would Seedorf really be the answer? It’s great Milan want their legends to continue with the outfit past their playing days. But the Dutchman is not there yet. And his coaching experience is non-existent. Imagine thrusting Seedorf into the pressure-cooker atmosphere of Milanello and expecting at minimum a Champions League return.

Galliani mentioned Panucci and Costacurta. The former is Fabio Capello’s assistant with Russia and Billy has limited Serie B coaching experience. Hardly glowing credentials. Perhaps Gennaro Gattuso or Filippo Inzaghi could one day lead the side, but for now they’re content in roles at Sion and the Milan Allievi Nazionali side respectively. They too have a long way to go. If Allegri must be replaced, Milan would be better served looking elsewhere. Luciano Spalletti would be a fantastic option if he can be lured from Zenit Saint Petersburg.

That suggests Allegri needs replacing. 2013 form says otherwise. Aside from the European exit at the hands of Barcelona – the second leg somewhat disappointing after Milan looked so good at home – they’ve performed well. The Rossoneri remain a point ahead of the Viola. Both have tricky season endings with matches against others who need points for Europe and salvation.

For his part, Allegri was thankful for the fans support. “The fans have got behind me since the day I arrived at Milan and they have also supported the team. They have really backed us this season which has been more difficult than the first two years I have been here.” Milan are building towards something and Allegri has been a part of that. Rather than part ways they should go forth together.

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Have your say...
If You think Mr. Allegri should go, it's because he never can beat Mr. Conte right? Milan please hire Jupp Heynckes LOL
on the 6th May, 2013 at 3:08pm
Allegri was given a truly shocking Milan team at the start of this season and I am actually shocked and in awe that he managed to get us back on track at all - I anticipated a relegation battle for us this year. It's not his fault the club once again sold our star players. The poor start to the season is thanks entirely to that decision. After that start, he couldn't be expected to get Milan into first position. Not his fault.
on the 5th May, 2013 at 5:06pm
I think allegri shd go.although he won d scudeto d first year, fumbled d second year wif almost dsame set of players takin second and 3rd d 3rd year..wt do u xpect d fourth year,4th position..I think d board shd lt him go and give tasoti a chance..he won d first game for us whn allegri ws suspended..wonder y u uses ambrosini regurlarly..he is nt tactically balance..we need someone like bojan to keep playing bt he prefer putting him on bench..I think d young boy hs similar style wif kaka..
on the 5th May, 2013 at 5:41am
@gurj

Stop taping about Curva Sud when you have no idea what it is. The Curva Sud has different opinions about allegri clearly were not all on the same page. Allegri can stay, bonera needs to go ambro shouldn't be playing even tho he's a true milanista. Get a solid center back and (actually need two but mexes and Zapata do well now and then )
on the 4th May, 2013 at 2:23pm
Marc my point is that you criticise without sense or logic in your argument. If the suggestions on this blog were put into action and the team still didn't get anywhere then the same people would criticise and suggest anoth solution. Allegri has done very well considering. Its like giving a builder a hammer and telling him to build a house, he needs other tools and materials. Again the CURVA SUD show their support and so should the rest.
on the 4th May, 2013 at 6:36am
O yea and you forgot to support your statement with evidence that proves any opinion made was false or wrong concerning the topic you had absolutely nothing.
on the 4th May, 2013 at 1:42am
Gurj your embarrassing your whole statement has no significance to the topic really your whole purpose was to insult your fellow fans, what kind of fan are you huh? putting down other milan supporters cause you think your Mr. Milan the ultimate fan well your not, the way you sounded was pathetic. supporters of allegri or not everyone is entitled to there opinion. your not president Berlusconi or Galliani. Funny thing is I bet yourself has never been to a live match at the San Siro. RIDICULOUS.
on the 4th May, 2013 at 1:33am
Completely agree Luca.
He deserves another year to work on the process he started.
One very important point of reference for me is the respect of the squad. Seems they are all in unison therefore some problems discussed here look exaggerated.

I admit, when I hear those iconic names you mention for his possible replacement I get goose-bumps, just like any other red-and-black freak out there I guess :)
I'm certain legends will come back to the mother-ship, but now is not the time yet.
on the 4th May, 2013 at 12:47am
Any coach who picks Bonera as automatic back up, can't find a place for Pirlo in the team and leaves Inzaghi out the CL squad is obviously not worthy to be a Milan coach.
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 10:01pm
...but he will never win a Scudetto. I don't see any alternatives to him either unless Milan spends considerable amount of cash on a true champion coach. However, something tells me that Berlusconi is trying to find his own Conte/Guardiola amongst Milan's own legends. This, however, is likely to backfire into Berlusconi's face (look what happened at Inter) as these findings are unique and fairly rare. It would be a huge gamble.
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 5:15pm
con't.. No other coach in all of football would play those 2 as much as Max has especially when you have way better players and younger to choose from. He's always taken too long when making his subs as well. I could go on and on but I guess it would only truely count if I were at the stadium?? Very odd agrument you've put forth.
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 5:15pm
@Gurj.. Not sure what your point is? So you have to be physically present in Milan to have an opinion? So what if some fans show their appreciation. If those fans were at home watching the game would their opinion mean less? That's what you're suggesting. I've been following Milan for nearly 20 years and have never been to San Siro, does that mean I can't express my opinion? I personally think Allegri is a horrible coach. Constatnly playing Bonera and Ambrosini is more than enough proof.
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 5:13pm
I am a Juve fan, but want much stronger Milan next season to boost competition in Seria A which should benefit Juventus as well as other teams in the competition. Allegri is a good coach but something tells me he will never win this competition ever again. He just does not have that competitive edge, charisma and a winning mentality. With him, Milan will always be guaranteed a top three finish each season (we will what Fiorentina has got to say about it this season though)...
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 5:08pm
JuveFanatico, you left out the Viola, they have a very creative midfield! Maldini's heir, I would say that Lodi is closer in style to Monty & Cristante than Sap. Signing Lodi would be a big mistake as he could get in the way of Cristante, & limit the youngsters appearances. Going back to Allegri, the thing that has annoyed me the most about him, was his approach in the 2nd Barca game. Milan just sat back & invited trouble on themselves. It was so frustrating.
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 3:27pm
I don't believe the so called Milan fans on here are real Milan fans at all, MALDINI'S HEIR, I find you insulting, have you ever been to the san siro? Have you ever been to watch a match? Or do you just watch Milan on the tv. Even the CURVA SUD showed their support for allegri this weekend and they are the highest opinion. The only sensible comments on here have come from non Milan fans. FORZA MILAN!
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 12:26pm
allegri has done 3 wonderful years at milan and he was the only coach in italy alog stramaccioni to rejuvenate their teams with the primavera squad.
i wish that allegri will stay.and seedorf is not even a coach and to get started with a big team i thinkl u will need a big responsible crew.
congra. to juve and napoli for wonderful season conte is really a good coach milan is still growing and it will come stronger but at the moment in italy juve is better sorry am 2 milan fan but thats true
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 11:58am
First of all i think ALLEGRI should stay,there is no point on changing a coach when NOW the players have got a good gear.Then who would take his place SPALETTI too much,did milan not say they need to save then stick with the word and not change.cause if you change know it will be even worse then the new coach will have to buy player this and that and it will take more time thaan usual.and is not true allegri won the scudetto thanks to inra but even thanks to t.silva and the other champions.
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 11:52am
@anonymus

On par with inter?? Your kidding right. 9 points ahead. We lost one game in the league 2013. We have players with extremely promising future and a mix of already proven players such as de sciglio, ses, abate, balotelli, niang, Monty, bojan and the list goes on.
Allegri has been above expectations however on my eyes not yet proven to be a "capello" or "anchelotti" kind of coach
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 11:51am
I think that Allegri will stay because Milan would rather use the little money that they have in the transfer market; instead of hiring a coach that could cost them €5+ mil a season. I would give him another year, & hope that Galliani gets some good players in the summer & releases the deadwood. The Fabregas rumour is interesting, but I doubt Milan could afford his fee & wages. Although a 1 year loan could be beneficial to all 3 parties.
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 9:54am
Can't believe the stories linking MVB & Seedorf to the club! Seedorf is very smart, but that is no guarantee that he will be a great coach. I'm glad that Milan didn't go for Guardiola, he would be too expensive. Klopp is a good idea, but again he could be very pricey: he is sure to be in demand now. The outgoing Heynches is another option & Milan would be a tasty challenge for someone with his experience.
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 9:47am
Firstly IF Milan feel that they need to replace Allegri, then it is disrespectful for ANYONE to not consider MAURO TASSOTTI! This guy has been the assistant since the Ancelotti days, and deserves his chance!

Anyway, whatever the decision by the Milan board, I'm fine with.

I believe in stability, and I think that Allegri is still growing as a coach, and he is already pretty decent.

However, over the years, Allegri tactics has failed us in some really big matches, esp with the CL.
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 9:39am
Okay I've thought of a replacement. Jürgen Klopp from Dortmund. He's bound to be unsettled with all his players being sold to his biggest rival. And hopefully he'd help us close in on 28 titles which Juventus have won (I actually think it should be 30 -what's that Inter fans?) so 31 for good measure!
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 8:36am
I don't see many options out there that could do better than Allegri. Berlusconi started a revolution and like it or not it will take time for Milan to become great again. However i have been left impressed with what Allegri has accomplished in one season. Many coaches would need 2 or 3 seasons to do what Allegri did in one. It takes time to figure out the best line up, it takes time to give confidence to players who up until this season were rarely in the spot light, much less leading a team with such immense history. These players were not used to being leaders, they were squad players and Allegri must be given credit for making them believe that they are worthy of the Milan jersey. With one or two good signings Allegri will have the right ideas for next season and this Milan side will have an identity and a set starting 11 that a lot of people expect. I also don't think that this Milan side is either boring or too predictable considering everything I only see Milan lack creativity but honestly other than Roma and Napoli all other clubs have the same issues.
on the 3rd May, 2013 at 12:19am
Any analysis on how Allegri does on the big games shows where he isn't up to the job. The points tally against the top few teams in seria a for the past two years is very poor.
on the 2nd May, 2013 at 9:37pm
Allegri has got to go. His tactics are poor. His team lacks any style and always looks aimless going forward. He won the scudetto thanks to Ibra scoring goals. In the Champions league, they lost to Tottenham because they couldnt score a goal and the same thing with Barcelona this year. I could take losing some games but at least show that there is a style to your game, that your growing as a unit.
on the 2nd May, 2013 at 9:30pm
What do you expect with the squad you have? Inter have been decimated all season along with other problems and still he could not beat them and is only a game or 2 away from them!! The worst Inter in the last few decades is nearly on par with this Milan team, squad and Allegri are average, Just ask Barca...or Bayern lol
on the 2nd May, 2013 at 5:10pm
The only thing allegri messes up on is the starting eleven and im sure someone could pull him aside and talk to him. He has done the impossible for milan this season. He handles his players well and is doing pretty good considering what he has and the situation milan was in. He beat us to the scudetto finished in a close second and now looks set to finish in third. There are no better options for milan now. -from a juve fan
on the 2nd May, 2013 at 4:54pm
My admiration for Allegri has grown this season however I still feel Milan need a change of coach. The team is predictable and we lost the great possession and control of tempo we had with Ancelotti .True we lost so much talent overnight but even with the players we have you expect a more convincing game. Heynckes or Spalletti would be great for the present but someday Seedorf will be amazing.
on the 2nd May, 2013 at 4:11pm
Bonera, Mexes (16 yellow cards really?), Nocerino, Robinho, Traore, Bojan. We need to promote Christante, Ganz and Petagna. My preference for coach..damn it's too late for Guardiola...whoever is the next Conte. Also we need a new medical team because Milan happened to have too many injurious for too long.
on the 2nd May, 2013 at 1:44pm
@ St Ambrose yes but Conte is a winner and while he is at Juventus they are got to stretch their lead of Scudetti. We need a coach of that level to compete. I am also worried about how he will utilise Saponara when he joins and managed the introduction of Mastour. Galliani will also be an issue since he'll keep making pointless or unplanned signings to crowd out these players (why sign Lodi when we'll have Saponara?). We need to buy Perin, Ogbonna and Astori and sell Amelia, Gabriel, Vila, Yepes
on the 2nd May, 2013 at 1:37pm

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