🇮🇹 Late drama leaves both Milan clubs staring down the barrel | OneFootball

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Padraig Whelan·9 January 2023

🇮🇹 Late drama leaves both Milan clubs staring down the barrel

Article image:🇮🇹 Late drama leaves both Milan clubs staring down the barrel

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The laughter had barely subsided on the red and black half of Milan over Inter’s late collapse at the weekend than they were dealt a harsh lesson of their own.

On Saturday night, Simone Inzaghi’s side took the lead twice away at newly-promoted Monza but ended up being forced to settle for a point in frustrating circumstances.

Patrick Ciurria’s delightful curling equaliser for his first ever Serie A goal levelled after Matteo Darmian’s opener before Pablo Marí committed a big error on his return to the side following the horrific knife attack he sustained last year and that allowed Lautaro Martínez to pick his pocket for a goal that seemed set to be the winner.

And then came pazza Inter. The crazy side of the club that makes them what they are for better or worse as Denzel Dumfries skewed a defensive header into the corner of his own net in the 93rd minute to gift Monza a point.

The scenes in the stands were memorable, particularly in the director’s box, where former Milan guru Adriano Galliani savoured the moment more than anyone else inside the Stadio Brianteo.

“It looked to me like Galliani during the golden age of Milan!” his coach Raffaelle Palladino remarked to Sky Italia afterwards.

Inter were much less enthused by the situation, angry over a VAR call that went against them and which sees them fall 10 points off the top.

Worryingly, Nicolò Barella and Hakan Çalhanoğlu exited with injuries that they will hope aren’t serious, while marquee signing Romelu Lukaku was again a ghostly presence in attack after his introduction.

It was a result that was enjoyed across the other side of the San Siro divide, but for only 24 hours, until they too were dealt their own, perhaps even crueller blow in a game that looked to be won.

Milan hosted Roma on Sunday night and were cruising after goals from Pierre Kalulu and Tommaso Pobega (his first for the Rossoneri in the league) had them 2-0 ahead with three minutes left on the clock.

But two disastrously defended set-pieces later, they found themselves with two points picked from their pocket and not only falling seven points behind Napoli again after making up ground last week, but also slipping behind a quietly resurgent Juventus in the table.

It was the first time in over 13 years that they had conceded twice in a game after the 85th minute but they really should have been better prepared against Roma of all opponents to deal with the threat they posed late.

The goals from Roger Ibañez and Tammy Abraham took the Giallorossi’s scoring percentage from set-pieces this season to an incredible 48%. Nobody in Serie A has more.

For José Mourinho, the point was enough to paper over another blunt attacking showing but also to keep them within top four striking distance.

But it was another cruel blow to Milan’s hopes of retaining their title. Two goals, two 2-2 draws and two frustrated sides at San Siro.

And elsewhere …

Highlights available in UK and Ireland only

Leaders Napoli had to bounce back from their first defeat of the season – and they sent out a message to the chasing pack.

Once again Juventus left it late but once again, they got the job done against Udinese.

But Milan and Inter weren’t the only sides to throw away a commanding lead late, as Empoli became the third side of the weekend to draw 2-2 with an injury-time equaliser!

😱 Goal of the Weekend

The nutmeg in the build-up and then the execution of the finish in the 94th minute from Răzvan Marin to claim a draw in the capital was special.

🥇 Player of the Weekend

Victor Osimhen was at the centre of everything as Napoli took the title of winter champions with two games to spare.