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i Rossoneri - AC Milan......The Return of a Legend!

The homecoming of Paolo Maldini!
Started on 7 March 2012 by arp303
Latest Reply on 23 May 2013 by niklas1992
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even though he is not that young. go for nigel de jong as Dm. he is one of the better defending midfielders on the game. can mark an opponent completely out of a game. or try getting yann m'vila
Na, de jong is not better than van bommel and is barely younger
arp303's avatar Group arp303
10 yearsEdited
Talking Tactics

Maldini's preferred an attack minded 4-2-4 and 4-3-3 formation. His footballing philosophy was simple - control the play, attack with pace and operate a sound defensive unit with midfielders to provide cover.

Maldini's 4-2-4 & 4-3-3 formations

As his preferred formation was very attack minded, the quality of the defensive players and the midfield were very important to allow his team to dictate the play and snuff out any attacking threat from the opposition. Big, strong centre backs were crucial, as were full backs with enough attacking nous to deliver cross field balls from deep but intelligent (and fit enough) to not get caught out of position on the counter. Strong, tough tackling midfielders with some creativity were absolutely imperative to Milan if they were to control, and keep control, of matches. Maldini was a master in the art of defence during his illustrious playing career but that didn't mean he was ignorant to what made an effective attacking unit. He wanted quick wide players, with the ability to run at defenders with pace and provide balls into the box as well as the option to cut inside and support the front 2. In terms of frontmen, Maldini was happy to deploy two out and out strikers or a main centre forward with someone behind to support.

So a versatile squad was important consisting of players who could play in multiple positions and change depending on the situation.

What do you think of Maldini's tactics?
Are they right for the squad he has at his disposal?
Team Selection

Maldini's man between the sticks:

Steve Mandanda had been in Hugo Lloris' shadow in France and although admittedly Maldini had considered his compatriot first, on reflection Mandanda is a more viable option. Whilst not as gifted as Lloris, Mandanda had enjoyed several consistent seasons at Marseille and had experience in the Champions League. He had 15 caps for his country and was still only 26 - very young for a goalkeeper. Mandanda possessed lightning reflexes and very good handling. Maldini felt he was a worthy replacement for the aging Abbiati andat under £11M allowed him to focus the Rossoneri funds on other areas.

The veteran Flavio Roma was Maldini's number 2, although Amelia and the teenage Petkovic were also available if required.

Maldini's Full Backs:

Abate was a perfect if rather conservative fit in Maldini's opinion. He had just earned his first cap from Prandelli and his stock was on the up. Left back was a different matter, whilst Bocchetti was due to start the season in this position, Maldini knew that he was naturally a centre back. It would require patience from both men but Maldini was sure that Bocchetti's defensive mindedness was important if Abate was going forwards more often to provide vital cover for Astori and Silva. In fact, Bocchetti reminded Maldini of himself; as he was also as proficient in both positions and often performed a similar role during his playing days.

Maldini was mildly concerned at the thought of injury or suspensions at full back with only Antonini as cover for both positions. A final foray into the transfer market may be prudent given the circumstances...

Maldini's Centre Backs:

Maldini was very happy with his centre backs - both standing over 6 feet tall, very strong, great positional sense and great tacklers of the ball. The world already knew how good a defender Thiago Silva was. Astori was more intriguing. He could turn out to be a bargain at £6M and stake a claim for the national team if he can handle the step up in class from Genoa.

With experienced cover in the form of Nesta and Mexes as well as the young guns Camporese and Prestia, Maldini felt he was blessed with options at centre back. In fact, Mexes might find himself at pastures new come January and once he has recovered from injury.

Maldini's Central Midfield:

The central Midfield was probably the area where Maldini was most concerned. He had many options but finding the right combination would be crucial. Felipe Soutto could be the key, he was highly rated and clearly very talented but had he brought the young Brazilian to Europe too soon? Was he really good enough to be compared to the great Carlos Dunga? If he was, then Maldini had nothing to worry about. Soutto could provide steel as well as creativity and a passing range that could open up tight Serie A defences. To partner him, Maldini's first choice was one of the few old guard to survive - Dutch ace Mark van Bommel. He was tough and very clever, been there and done it all before on the biggest stages. He could be a great role model to Soutto and Maldini thought his controlled aggression in the middle of the park would be very important, particularly in the Champions League. Nocerino, Seedorf, Aquilani and even Ambrosini (who Maldini couldn't give away, probably due to his wage demands) all provided options that could prove useful during a long season. In fact, with the 4-3-3 formation deployed the combination of van Bommel, Soutto and Nocerino could be a formidable threesome in the middle of the park to break down the stronger teams.

Maldini's Wide Men:

Maldini wanted to attack teams with pace so quick wide players with an eye for goal were key - Robinho was ideal and would almost operate as a third forward to drop behind Pato and Rossi when required. El Shaarawy was precociously talented - creative, technically gifted, reasonably quick with a sweet right foot. Time would tell whether he would be able to handle the pressure in Milan's first team....

Ballotelli and Emanuelson gave Maldini some different options. Maldini had a feeling Ballotelli might grab some headlines on and off the field this season...

Maldini's Front Men:

Maldini was excited at the prospect of seeing this partnership in action. In fact, it was one of the most exciting partnerships in Europe! Rossi could drop behind Pato if required or either man could lead the line on his own if the team needed an extra central midfielder.

Milan legend 'Pippo' Inzaghi would provide explosive cover off the bench as the only other out and out striker but Robinho and Ballotelli were also very capable strikers so Maldini was more than confident that cover up front would not be a problem.

What do you think of Maldini's squad?
Are they ready to embark on Maldini's maiden season at the helm of "i Rossoneri"?
Maldini already thinking of Next Season....

Headline from todays "La Gazzetta dello Sport":

"Maldini signs new Boban!"

The article went on:

" New AC Milan coach Paolo Maldini has signed highly rated Croatian Under 21 International Mateo Kovacic. The attacking midfielder has been likened to former Milan star Zvonimir Boban. Boban played 251 games for the Rossoneri scoring 30 goals in 9 years, including being part of the 1994 Champions League winning side. Maldini was quoted as saying that he understood why the Croatian press compared Kovacic to his former team mate, saying his footballing brain and technical ability were very similar to the Milan legend. The fee is thought to be in the region of £10M and Kovacic will join the Milan squad next season. "

Maldini also secured the signing of versatile French full back Kevin Theophile-Catherine for £5.5M as much needed cover and also purchased the other 50% stake of up and coming Italian star Stephan El Swaarawy from Genoa for £4M. Maldini clearly believed that the young Italian's stock may rise significantly if he manages to win a regular place in the first team and moved to secure the permanent transfer early.

Sounds like you have everything under control, great backups for strikers and defenders.

Interesting tactics, Milan is well known for employing the Trequartista behind the strikers, looking forward to seeing the different style of play this time round.

Any thoughts of bringing back Kaka to San Siro? I think you can get him for 25-30M next season, though you might have to tweak tactics to get the best out of him.

How does Carlos Kameni compare to Mandanda? I think he was pretty good too.
Really considered Kaka but he would go against the philosophy of clearing out the old guard. Madrid will let him go for £31M but he wants £200k a week. I think a better option would be Ganso. Santos are demanding £70M at the moment and he has broken his leg but maybe he would be an option next season to slot in next to Soutto if he does well....

As for Kameni, they are very similar players in ability - its a close call but I've never signed the Frenchman so he's the more interesting option for me!

Thanks for reading :)
Maldini Handed Tricky Champions League Group...

Wow. Talk about tricky. Though, just like in real life, Barcelona will let you know just how far you can go in the Champions League.

Try looking at Lucas Moura, or Willian from Shaktar, you can get him cheap like 10M or something.
Maldini's first Serie A match - Chievo v Milan

On the team bus to Verona, Maldini pondered his tactics for his first league match of the season against Chievo. Should he opt for a 3 man midfield as it was an away tie or make the most of our technical advantage and go at the Chievo defence from the get go? Maldini observed his new players mingling on the team bus. Rossi and Pato seemed to be getting along well, it was hard to distinguish who spoke the better Italian, mainly due to the fact that Rossi had spent the last few years in Spain and Pato was almost an honorary Italian! van Bommel stayed in Milan due to his injury so it was left to Ambrosini to sit at the front of the bus and take control of the group. He did it well and Maldini began to feel fortunate to not have got any transfer bids for the midfielder he had tried so hard to offload in the summer.

As the team bus arrived at the Marcantonio Bentegodi stadium, Maldini's mind was made up....He was going to show his intent for the season ahead and take the game to Chievo....

It was a sumptuous first half performance from AC Milan where new £34M man Guiseppe Rossi showed just why Milan invested such a high fee in him. He bossed the game from the start, relishing his Trequartista role, dropping into the hole behind Pato and threading intricate balls right through the Chievo backline. Rossi was rewarded with a hand in all 4 goals.

Brazilian International Thiago Silva made it 2 in 2 games as he rose to convert Rossi's flighted free kick from just outside the penalty box. Pato scored two stunning long range efforts, one a screamer into the top corner from 30 yards after a great ball from deep by that man Rossi and another from the edge of the box that didnt exactly cover the Chievo keeper in glory. Rossi got what he deserved 5 minutes before the break, latching onto a stella pass from another debutant, Fellipe Soutto. A mix up in the Rossoneri defence gifted a goal to Bojan Jokic on 55 minutes but Milan were able to cruise to victory and never really got out of first gear in the second half.

Maldini wont have been happy with the amount of shots Chievo were allowed to pepper Mandanda's goal with but he would have been more than satisfied with the performance of his team and a fantastic away victory!

Great Serie A debut for Rossi:

I would love Willian and Moura but in 12.2 SI seem to have tweaked their reputation as I was quoted £26M for Willian and £46M for Moura! A sign of the times!
Willian is excellent, and you should be able to knock the price down to £20m, especially if you talk positively about him in the press. I'm enjoying this story.

On a tangent: is giving up on Rossi the biggest transfer mistake Manchester United made during the 2000s? I'd say it's third, behind selling Stam in 2001 and later letting Pique go back to Barcelona.
Yeah gene, we wouldn't worry about losing vidic if pique was still here. You could go for james rodriguez usually around 12m
loving it mate, keep going!!
#44951 Nickbonista : Na, de jong is not better than van bommel and is barely younger

de jong is 27 and van bommel is 34 i think de jong is much younger than van bommel lol

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