The Frenchman scores three and rises to 16 goals, while Rafael is at 14. It’s a challenge for the Rossoneri’s best scorer. Olly over the moon: “I feel like a child, and with Juve it’s a final”
All right, there were 43 points behind, Samp has the worst defense of the tournament and took the field with the spirit of those who know they are taking their last steps in Serie A. But in these cases, woe to be picky : the three points were needed – absolutely and unavoidably – and it was also necessary to bring them home in a convincing way, in order to face the last two corners – Juve and Verona – with conviction.
Those who are called to do it for a living have taken care of it. All together passionately: goals, assists, hugs and kisses on the shirt. Leao and Giroud had long been expected in the scorer’s table. And the signals were increasingly disturbing, since Milan came from three defeats in a row without the pleasure of having scored a single goal. It was an omen of misfortune, considering that to earn a place in the next Champions League, the Devil is called to win without looking around too much.
They were both fugitives, Rafa and Oly. The last smile of the Portuguese dates back to 23 April (brace against Lecce), while Oly had only scored one goal in the last two months (18 April, quarter-finals of the Champions League with Napoli). In the league he was in withdrawal from six straight games, an unpleasant personal negative record in Serie A, in the context of weeks spent battling with pain in his calf and tendon. Physical troubles shared with Leao, who saw himself thrown out of the European door right at the climax, when everything was still to be written. Maybe they didn’t recover everything in one night – the blow in the semifinal was violent -, but they started scoring again when it was most needed: in front of what has always been the most indispensable goal of the season, namely participation in the cup most beautiful European of the next vintage.
Three different ways
Giroud even took the ball home, a trick granted to those who place three in a single game (it’s the first time for the Rossoneri), and at the end of the match he launched into: “I’ll be 37 soon (September 30, ed), but when I play football I’m like a child. I always want to win with this shirt, it means a lot to play here for me. I hope it wasn’t the last match here in the Champions League, let’s hope not. Now we do everything to qualify again, this club and these fans deserve it. If you had told me that I would have experienced these emotions maybe I would not have believed it. We wanted to play a good game tonight to get up after Tuesday. Juve? Like a final. We don’t know what happens, if any points will be deducted. We are focused on our football and on our games to win.” Oly scored in three different ways, proving he is a complete centre-forward: head, penalty, and in acrobatics after a ferocious melee with an opponent. Giroud joked about his age, but pay attention to this fact: he has become the oldest player to have scored at least 10 goals in the five major European leagues.
The other excellent news comes from Leao. It was necessary to understand if Rafa could be counted on in the last three games after the one seen half-service in the second leg of the Euroderby. And the answer was yes. Accelerations, stretches, dribbling and even a wise vision of the game have totally returned him to the cause. He scored the goal that opened the game – the control that armed his right foot was sumptuous -, then he obtained the penalty converted by Giroud, entered the magnificent action that sent Diaz into the hole and finally served the assist for Oly’s five. He put his leg in four goals out of five. Between Leao and Giroud there is also a competition for who will end the year with the crown of AC Milan season bomber. Before Sampdoria they were tied at 13, now the Frenchman has overtaken him by two. A challenge that can benefit Milan a lot.
21 maggio – 10:19
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