Having gone down very early in the game, AC Milan came back to take away a point courtesy of a second-half strike from Gonzalo Higuain.
AC Milan marked their return from the international break with a 1-1 draw against Cagliari at the Sardegna Arena on Sunday night.
Brazilian Joao Pedro, in his first game back after a six-month doping ban, put the home team ahead with an untidy effort just four minutes into the game. Milan huffed and puffed in their search for an equalizer, which finally came ten minutes into the second period, as on-loan striker Gonzalo Higuain slotted home after rounding goalkeeper Alessio Cragno.
The winning goal proved elusive for either side as they shared the spoils on the night. The result lifts Milan to 14th spot on the Serie A table with four points from three matches, with a game in hand on most teams around them.
— AC Milan (@acmilan) September 16, 2018
Here’s how the Milan stars fared on the night.
Gianluigi Donnarumma: 6/10
There was little the Italian international could do about Joao Pedro’s strike early in the game. Wasn’t called into action a lot from thereon and was alert when needed to be. However, his distribution from the back seemed to put his teammates under pressure on occasion.
Davide Calabria: 6/10
The right-back got forward with great intent but his end product left a lot to be desired. Over-hit his crosses more often than not, although his link-up with Suso and Franck Kessie was a source of optimism. Defended fairly well against any threat from his flank.
Mateo Musacchio: 6/10
The 28-year-old Argentine centre-half struggled to get going in a frantic start to the game and wasn’t always comfortable dealing with the physical threat of Leonardo Pavoletti. However, he improved with time, won his fair share of aerial duels, and made sure Milan didn’t concede any more goals.
Alessio Romagnoli: 5.5/10
An uncharacteristically jittery display from the 23-year-old club captain, especially in the opening stages of the game as he got caught out by Pavoletti leading up to the goal. Got better with time like his partner, but the dodgy start ended up proving costly.
Ricardo Rodriguez: 6/10
A solid enough performance from the Switzerland international. Was steady defensively and got up to support his team in attack, delivering some decent crosses into the box as Milan chased the game. Taken off late on in the game for Diego Laxalt.
Franck Kessie: 7/10
The young midfielder showed a lot of heart and energy throughout the game. Linked up well with Suso and Calabria on the right side. Never lacking for effort and his hard work paid off, as his pressing led to an unintentional assist for Higuain’s goal in the second period.
Lucas Biglia: 6/10
The Argentine international offered a calm and steady presence in the middle of the park, which was very much needed after the shaky start. Did good work defensively, but seemed to slow down the pace of the game, which affected Milan’s attack.
Giacomo Bonaventura: 5/10
Got into promising positions but couldn’t make the most of it, as he missed a couple of great opportunities to bring Milan back into the game. Didn’t inspire confidence when in possession. Unsurprisingly was the first to be hauled off by the manager.
The Spaniard was a bright spot in the final third as he regularly got into dangerous positions, but his decision making let the team down on a number of occasions. Crossing not always accurate, but did force a couple of saves from the Cagliari goalkeeper.
Gonzalo Higuain: 7/10
The Argentine forward cut a frustrated figure at the top due to the lack of service coming his way and had to drop deep in search of the ball. Made the best of the chance that came his way to equalise in the second period and could have won it late on, but his headed effort went wide. Will be relieved to get his first goal for his new club, though.
Hakan Calhanoglu: 4/10
A disappointing outing for the former Bayer Leverkusen man. Kept in check by Darijo Srna for most parts and when he did manage to get into a good position, he failed to make it count. Had little impact on the proceedings and was withdrawn for Samu Castillejo.
Tiemoue Bakayoko: 6/10
A much-improved display in comparison to his debut against Napoli. Showed good discipline, regained possession on a few occasions and drove forward, having replaced Bonaventura in the 66th minute.
Samu Castillejo: 6/10
Came on for Calhanoglu in the 77th minute. Looked purposeful and added some pace in the final third. End product not up to the mark though.
Diego Laxalt: N/A
Replaced Rodriguez with five minutes left to be played.