Milan swam under pressure from Liverpool but returned powerfully. And could be saved
Liverpool vs. Milan are a classic in the Champions League, but even a particular match has a rather dramatic backstory. Milan have not played in the Champions League for seven years, since 2014. In that team, Abbyati and Kaka, Robinho and Montolivo were still playing out . Only the colors remained in common: the players, the coach and the owners changed. The new team is not spoiled by European top matches, so one of the most difficult trips in the world was to be the most difficult test.
Milan scored the second goal a minute after the first. It all started with an attack by Liverpool, Bennasser intercepted the ball and famously launched the attack through the left flank. Leau scattered on the edge, and Trent did not have time to follow him, stuck in front. Fabinho also did not back up (although he should have), and Leau’s passage along the flank, followed by a shift to the center and a pass to Rebic became the key moment of the attack.
Liverpool, having played much better for most of the half, ended up behind. One could expect a cheerful start after the break, and expectations were met. The beginning of the second half turned into one solid attack. No bulk: the hosts patiently hacked the defense, stretching it from flank to flank, and Milan defended in a low block. They managed to score thanks to Origi’s cool individual actions: he got the ball with his back to the goal, turned around and threw a parachute under the dash of Salah. Excellent execution, but importantly, none of the defenders even tried to advance to Origi when he took a couple of steps to the center of the field. Usually Kier or Tomori were nominated in such cases.
After the goal, the game pattern did not change. Liverpool went ahead as well as when the score was 1: 2, and Milan also pressed against the penalty area without any signs of counterplay. The home team’s advantage after the second goal and before the third was overwhelming. 78% possession, 5-0 shots, 3-0 corners. In those 20 minutes, Milan made a total of seven passes in the attacking third (Liverpool – 70).
Henderson scored not as a result of a dangerous attack and not from an obvious moment, but simply in the individual class, putting it from afar into the corner. But in general, the goal is absolutely deserved, because since the beginning of the half, the pressure on Menyan’s goal has only intensified.
Obviously, it is impossible to spend the whole half at such a pace, but it is impressive that the hosts did not reduce the intensity until they scored the third goal. Only then did Klopp agree to the energy-saving mode. Liverpool rolled back to the middle block and gave up the ball (after 75 minutes – 70% of Milan’s possession). Milan, by the way, squeezed out one moment in the ending. It deserves respect, but a draw would be too bad for the game.