Milan secured a 3-0 win over Lecce at San Siro on Sunday: here are three talking points from the Rossoneri’s fifth consecutive win in Serie A this season.

Attacking trio

The big news of the day was the trio of attacking midfielders chosen by Stefano Pioli who had to cope without the suspended Ruben Loftus-Cheek. Pulisic started as an attacking midfielder for the first time this season, joining Samuel Chukwueze and Rafael Leao behind Olivier Giroud. Pioli had praised Chukwueze on the eve of the game and the Nigerian winger proved to be in shape with an assist for Pulisic’s early opener and more moves and sprints that caused any sort of trouble for the Giallorossi. Milan dominated the match, and Leao also got his name on the scoresheet. Pulisic did exactly what Pioli expected, but there’s more behind the Diavoli’s win.


Milan have never struggled to score goals this season. In truth, the main issues that eventually pushed them out of the title race way too early were their defensive fragility, the lack of intensity towards November and December, and injuries that piled up in the first part of the campaign. “There were injuries, but also we needed to have a more ferocious press, more careful preventative marking and I think many of our improvements have come from the defensive phase,” Pioli told DAZN after the final whistle. Surely, the return of Fikayo Tomori has massively helped the Rossoneri, who kept two clean sheets in the last four Serie A games started by the England international. The pace of the ex-Chelsea man is crucial to the Rossoneri’s balance as it helps the team to keep a high line and be more comfortable when tracking back to defend on counter-attacks. Pioli will surely miss him on Thursday when Tomori will be suspended in the first leg of the Europa League quarter-finals against Roma.

Pioli stays?

Back in January, Italian media and pundits had no doubts the Rossoneri coach would be sacked at the end of the season. The Parma-born tactician, however, remained quiet and tried to put the pieces together and Milan looked reborn in 2024. “It has not always been a sharp or positive campaign, so we suffered in some moments and tried to isolate ourselves, but we now want to keep the positive streak going,” Pioli admitted after beating Lecce. “This is a team that never gives up, it remains solid and has belief in what it is doing. The players can sense now they are in good shape both physically and technically, so what we need is to always have this level of motivation.” What’s been particularly impressive about Pioli is how he managed to keep the team focused despite some big disappointments in the first part of the season, including the Champions League exit. All Milan players look involved and motivated, just think about the contribution from Yacine Adli or Chukwueze, also in the Lecce game. Perhaps, without injuries, it would have been a very different title race now, but this alone proves that Pioli is doing enough to deserve the job for next season as well.

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