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Larry Eghosa: Time running out for Mihajlovic?

After three years of rather contrasting fortunes, one that saw AC Milan stuck in a downward slide by finishing third, eighth and tenth respectively, some much needed summer changes suggested a change of direction for the Italian giant but it’s been same of the same.

Indeed, the seven time European champions rolled back the years by splashing the cash to acquire identified personnel ahead of a make or break season. This started with billionaire-but-broke owner, Silvio Berlusconi agreeing to part with a substantial percentage of the club’s dwindling shares in order to boost the summer investment.

Perhaps, a notable proof that Milan were serious about ending their disastrous run was the appointment of a non-affiliate in Sinisa Mihajlovic following his heroics at Sampdoria last season. Backed by the spending will of Berlusconi, Sinisa practically had his wishes in the transfer market with the acquisition of Carlos Bacca, Luis Adriano, Andrea Bertolacci, Juraj Kucka and former protégé, Alessio Romagnoli among others.

While it’s still early days as only eight games have been played, it’s difficult to point out any improvement in Milan’s performance after spending over €90m, more than half of which went for AS Roma fringe players, Andrea Bertolacci and Alessio Romagnoli.

Understandably, a team comprising a new coach and a couple of new players may take time to settle but the uninspiring performances have been everything but promising. Besides, highfliers, Fiorentina and Napoli have new managers as well. Even though Mihajlovic appeared to have been heading for the club’s hall of fame by identifying the team’s major ‘Achilles heel’ of weak mentality, the results have not matched up with his ingenuity.

So far this term, they have conceded 14 goals, scored only nine, lost four games and are yet to keep a clean sheet which is worse off compared to this stage last season when they had conceded 11 goals, scored 17, lost only once and had kept a clean sheet with a healthy goal difference of 6, unlike a five goal deficit this season. As far as points garnered is concerned, they trail last season by five points after bagging in only 10 points from the opening eight games.

Going by rumours, the Serbian tactician is mandated to win his next two games against Sassuolo and Chievo Verona, both of whom are superior on the log.

Conclusively, Mihajlovic’s failure to match the average record of an inexperienced Filipo Inzaghi should question his Milan adventure and more bad results should see him face the same fate as his predecessor. Ultimately, if Milan want to avoid an embarrassing third consecutive season without European football, the board must act quickly even if it means having a third former manager in their wage list.

 

Follow Larry Eghosa on Twitter – @LarryEghosa