Milan secured a 4-1 win over Lecce on Monday night as we made a welcome winning return to Serie A to keep our European hopes alive.
Goals from Samu Castillejo, Giacomo Bonaventura, Ante Rebic and Rafael Leao wrapped up the three points, although there were spells either side of half-time where we looked like throwing the win away.
Nevertheless, we came out on top and it was largely thanks to a string of players putting in high-quality performances to ensure that we avoided encountering familiar problems up front which had led to us having the fourth-worst attack in Serie A ahead of the game.
Milan player ratings vs Lecce…
Gianluigi Donnarumma, 6 – Quiet night as he had little to do and was beaten by a well-taken penalty. Dealt with danger with minimal fuss though and his distribution was sharp too.
Andrea Conti, 6 – Still a little shaky defensively at times, but grew into the game and produced an assist for Leao’s goal to show his quality going forward.
Simon Kjaer, 6 – Looked like he was putting in another solid performance at the back, and it’s hoped that the knee issue which eventually forced him off isn’t anything serious.
Alessio Romagnoli, 6 – Relatively straight-forward night’s work for the captain, but was alert to any danger and was accurate with his passing out from the back.
Theo Hernandez, 6 – A positive return to the line-up after his absence vs Juventus, but wasn’t quite as sharp as usual going forward and was caught out defensively at times.
Franck Kessie, 6.5 – Put in a real shift in the heart of the side as he provided defensive coverage in front of the backline and kept possession well while making himself an option at every possible opportunity.
Ismael Bennacer, 6.5 – Ultimately looked comfortable and cruised in the latter stages with the game won, and while he wasn’t at his best, it was still another impressive shift from the midfielder to give us a solid platform on which to base the win.
Samu Castillejo, 7 – Brilliant finish for his goal and showed a superb work ethic as he was tireless in his pressing and defensive work. A quality display from the Spaniard, who proved his importance to the side again.
Giacomo Bonaventura, 6.5 – On hand to score a crucial goal as we hit back straight after Lecce scored their equaliser, while his intelligent play on and off the ball helped our attacking quartet pose so many problems with his ability to float into various dangerous positions.
Hakan Calhanoglu, 7 – Involved in three of the four goals with two assists and his shot which forced the save that led to Bonaventura’s goal, the Turkish playmaker was in fine form on Monday. Gets plenty of stick for his lack of decisiveness, but on this occasion, deserves credit for a top performance.
Ante Rebic, 7 – Took his goal brilliantly after racing clear on the counter attack, showing great composure. His work rate is so superb, and his intelligence on the pitch even as the lone frontman was obvious with his runs into the channels and his ability to bring others into play. Deserves to keep his place as a starter in Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s absence.
Matteo Gabbia, 5.5 – Not a great outing for the youngster who perhaps struggled with the pace and with a lack of sharpness after coming on to replace Kjaer. Gave a soft penalty away and was dragged out of position regularly.
Rafael Leao, 6 – Still looked a little lazy off the ball, but burst into life when receiving possession and got himself on the scoresheet with a well-taken header.
Alexis Saelemaekers, 6 – Good shift to provide some fresh legs in the last 20 minutes.
Lucas Biglia, N/A
Lucas Paqueta, N/A