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HomeSerie ALoftus-Cheek's brace is not enough: Milan miss too many penalties

Loftus-Cheek’s brace is not enough: Milan miss too many penalties

Milan were unable to take advantage of the slip-up by current leaders Juventus to pull closer. The Rossoneri missed two penalties against Bologna, but still turned the game around in the meantime – before Bologna were also awarded a penalty in stoppage time

After Juventus’ 1:1 draw against Empoli, Milan had the chance to make up ground. However, the game got off to a slow start against Bologna, who had recently gone three games without a win in the league. It was not until the 19th minute that the Rossoneri, who were unchanged from their 3-2 win in Udine, registered their first serious shots on goal through Rafael Leao and Calabria.

Zirkzee puts Bologna ahead, then it gets wild

Zirkzee was particularly eye-catching for the visitors and was also responsible for the lead after just under half an hour (29′) – before that, Kjaer had twice saved Fabbian’s shots.

Wild minutes followed: Ferguson had his leg up in Bologna’s penalty area, Kjaer’s head a little low. Referee Davide Massa ruled in favor of the Rossoneri – and awarded a penalty. Before the penalty could be taken, visiting coach Thiago Motta got so upset about the decision that he was promptly shown the red card. Skorupski calmed his coach’s nerves by saving Giroud’s penalty, which was not really well placed (42′).

Three minutes later, however, the Polish keeper had to fish the ball out of the net: Loftus-Cheek had straddled the line from close range after a quick attack down the right (45). The teams went into the break tied at one goal apiece and with a total of six yellow cards.

The game then flattened out considerably in the second half. Nevertheless, both Zirkzee (over the bar, 49′) and Reijnders (crossbar, 64′) had opportunities to put their teams ahead

Theo misses the next penalty

In the closing stages, Milan had a great chance to equalize, but the home side again missed a penalty – Beukema had brought down Rafael Leao with a hard tackle to the face. This time Theo failed to hit the post, but the Frenchman saved the follow-up himself (74′). The celebrations quickly died down, however, as the penalty taker is not allowed to be the first player to touch the ball again if it hits the post – which is what happened in this case

Loftus-Cheek nevertheless turned the game in the Lombards’ favor with a header (83′). But the game still had one more scene in store: Substitute Terracciano held Kristiansen by the shirt at the far post and referee Massa awarded a penalty after VAR intervention – the third on Saturday evening. Unlike Giroud and Theo, Orsolini converted from the spot (90.2) – and secured the point for the surprise club of this Serie A season, who remain in the thick of the action.

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