Bad, bad bad… Lecce – Milan 2:2 – ACMilan.com.pl
Until the break it was nice, light, easy and pleasant. Milan was leading 2-0 in Lecce and nothing heralded a disaster. The second installment, however, brought completely different emotions. The Rossoneri only drew 2-2, and they are still very lucky not to have lost at the Stadio Via del Mare.
The match started badly for the guests. Already in the 10th minute, Rafael Leao reported the need to leave the pitch. The Portuguese suffered a thigh muscle injury and was replaced by Noah Okafor. A few moments after entering the field, the Swiss passed the ball to Tommaso Pobeda, and the Italian fired an accurate and strong shot – the hosts’ goalkeeper, Wladimiro Falcone, had to make an effort.
The fight wasn’t very exciting in its first parts. Mike Maignan’s alertness was tested several times with long-range shots, but they could not cause any problems for the Frenchman. And his compatriots got down to specifics on the offensive in the 28th minute. Theo Hernandez played the ball with Okafor on the left wing, then crossed the ball in front of the Lecce goal, and Olivier Giroud was waiting for that. The striker scored his 40th goal in his 100th appearance for the Rossoneri.
A moment later, Tijjani Reijnders broke through. In the 35th minute, the Dutchman, unattacked in front of the hosts’ penalty area, gained space by running with the ball at his feet, then shot towards the goal, and Falcone, who intervened uncertainly, capitulated for the second time. The midfielder could have added another to his first goal in Milan, but his next attempt hit the post. Just before the break, Maignan made a fantastic save, and his intervention after Lameck Banda’s shot could easily be considered the best in the round.
At the break, Milan was leading 2-0 against Lecce at the Stadio Via del Mare, and the only concern was Leao’s forced substitution.
In the second part, not much interesting happened for a long time. Falcone was able to cope with accurate shots from Pobega and Okafor. In the 66th minute, Lecce attacked and did so successfully. Alexis Blin passed the ball from a corner kick and Nicola Sansone headed it into the Rossoneri net from close range. The Milanese hadn’t had time to recover from it yet and it was already a draw. Yunus Musah, introduced for the second half, recorded a turnover in his own half, and after a while Lameck Banda took advantage of this with an accurate shot from the penalty area, making it 2-2.
As if that wasn’t enough, Milan didn’t seem like a team that was going to get back on track anytime soon. On the contrary – it could have been even worse. In the 85th minute, Sansone jumped to the header and sent the ball into the post, which rolled just in front of the goal line and, fortunately, the Rossoneri did not score in their net for the third time.
Added time brought some incredible emotions, but not the ones the Rossoneri fans had dreamed of. First, Giroud was sent off with a red card for criticizing the referee’s rulings. And in the last action of the match, Roberto Piccoli decided to shoot from a good thirty meters and… beat Maignan. The stadium in Lecce was filled with euphoria, but only for a short time, because the VAR analysis showed that the Italian fouled Malick Thiaw during the goal.
Either way, Milan once again lost league points and only drew 2-2 in Puglia.
Lecce – Milan 2:2 (0:2)
Goals: Sansone 66′, Banda 70′ – Giroud 28′, Reijnders 35′
Yellow cards: Ramadani 45′, Strefezza 62′, Piccoli 85′, J. Gonzalez 90+2′ – T. Hernandez 44′, Musah 80′, Calabria 80′ (outside), Giroud 90+3′
Red card: Giroud 90+3′
Lecce (4-3-3): Falcone – Gendrey, Baschirotto, Pongracić, Dorgu – Rafia (57′ J. Gonzalez), Ramadani, Kaba (63′ Blin) – Strefezza (63′ Sansone), Krstović (63′ Piccoli), Banda (87′ Venuti)
Milan (4-2-3-1): Maignan – Calabria (46′ Musah), Thiaw, Tomori, T. Hernandez – Krunić, Reijnders – Chukwueze (79′ Jović), Pobega (71′ Florenzi), Leao (10′ Okafor ) – Giroud
Judge: Rocco Abisso (Palermo)
*** MEETING SUMMARY ***