If AC Milan took another step towards the title of Italian champion on Sunday, Olivier Giroud remained silent. The Milanese number 9 has only two games left to reach the ten-goal mark…
Put under pressure by Inter Milan, winner Friday at Empoli, AC Milan held their rank on Sunday on the lawn of Hellas Verona. Led 1-0 shortly before the break, the Rossoneri finally won 3-1, thus regaining first place in the Serie A standings with two points ahead of their neighbor with two games remaining. After years of scarcity, the Lombard club is only 180 minutes away from a 19th Italian championship title, the first since 2011.
And once again, Sandra Tonali played the saviors. Fifteen days after scoring the winning goal in added time on the lawn of Lazio, the Milan midfielder scored twice, allowing the residents of San Siro to reverse the situation. Olivier Giroud this time remained silent, stretching his bad patch. If he had equalized at the Olympic Stadium, he has only scored one goal in his last eight matches.
Two days from the end, the former Gunner is certainly still the club’s top scorer this season in Serie A, tied with Rafael Leao, but the two men do not show only nine goals on the clock. Enough to maintain, for the Savoyard, the curse of number 9 of AC Milan. Since the departure of Filippo Inzaghi in 2012, this shirt seems cursed at the Rossoneri, at least if we stop at the statistics.
In ten years, no less than ten players have succeeded under number 9, including some high-sounding names including Alexandre Pato, Fernando Torres, Gonzalo Higuain or Mario Mandzukic. However, none of them managed to score more than ten league goals. The Frenchman is already doing better than most of his predecessors, seven of whom had only stayed six months in Lombardy. And none have played for more than a year.
Because if he does not panic the counters, the native of Chambéry has nevertheless become an indisputable holder. Likewise, these 9 goals are already a record for the last decade since they surpass the 8 achievements of Lapadula. Regularly questioned about this curse, Olivier Giroud seems to have fun with it. “I don’t really believe in the curse of jersey number 9. Afterwards, I must admit that between the Covid, the back, the ankle…”he confided in January in reference to his physical glitches a repetition of the first half of the season.
Number 9 since 2012:
Mandzukic (10 matches, 0 goals), Piatek (18 matches, 4 goals), Higuain (15 matches, 6 goals), Fernando Torres (10 matches, 1 goal), Destro (15 matches, 3 goals), Matri (15 matches , 1 goal), Pato (4 matches, 0 goal), André Silva (24 matches, 2 goals), Lapadula (27 matches, 8 goals), Luiz Adriano (26 matches, 4 goals).
Read also:Serie A fixtures and resultsSerie A standings
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