There are almost ten clubs in the entirety of world football that seem like they do not even need to qualify for the Champions League in order to gain entry. Clubs with storied histories and with a collection of past players that would rival any World Cup winning squad. However, when one of those clubs falls from the ranks of the elite, the future becomes an uncertainty that can scare fans and players alike (you want proof? Look at Liverpool over the last half-decade).
AC Milan currently sit in 13th place with 14 points after playing thirteen matches in a 38 match season. This means that continuing down this current path would have AC Milan finishing the season with a measly 42 points and being hopelessly out of the running for qualifying for any European competition. They are leaking goals, cannot score their own, and have already been very vocal about their financial struggles that prevent them from simply opening the checkbook to make the problems go away.
So, how do they start to fix it?
First, make a little money. Balotelli is worth 30 million to the right team and he still is not the type of player that you truly want your team built around. Robinho has some suitors in Brazil that would overpay for his aging talent and he could easily add some money to the coffers. Kaka would be an easy sell to the MLS, especially considering that the recently added Orlando expansion’s ownership have already declared an interest in the Brazilian playmaker. Matri has also proved useless and his Juventus exploits were recent enough to snag a decent price within Serie A.
Second, build a core. El Shaarawy should be held on to no matter the cost and he can age nicely with Niang growing into a truly formidable attack for years to come. Bring in some midfield consistency that typically avoids the injured reserve (i.e. the opposite of Kaka) and possibly give one last payday to some aging stars in the midfield (that can still play at a high level) in order to field an impressive 11. Factor in that your defense is getting dangerously old, January may be the perfect time to scrap the old and start testing out new combinations with younger players.
Third, fire your coach already…you have given Allegri plenty of time to fix this and he obviously cannot…kick him to the curb.
AC Milan needs to take a look across Europe and see how Liverpool tried to turn the tide and take a few notes from the Merseyside club. Missing out on Europe next season will be a massive blow financially, but Liverpool look a step fresher when they play their league games because of their removal from weekly European competition. Considering the quick turnover of top talent in Serie A, the top four will probably look very different next season and AC Milan might have a much easier time at returning to the top of the table than Liverpool.
The biggest step to resolving a problem is admitting that you have one…and AC Milan need to admit that they are in full-blown crisis mode right now. Admit the problem, and let’s fix it.