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Five Aside
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Sumeet Paul blog profile  By Sumeet Paul

Leonardo Bonucci gets 4/10 after red card as AC Milan shut out again

Leonardo Bonucci's reckless elbow drew a red card which left his teammates short-handed against Genoa.

Ten-man AC Milan were held to a goalless draw by Genoa at the San Siro on Sunday, with Leonardo Bonucci receiving his marching orders in the first half. To their credit, the Rossoneri pushed on for the win despite the setback, but they were unable to find a breakthrough as the pressure remains on Vincenzo Montella.

Positives

There was a significant improvement in the second-half performance, as even with the player deficit, Milan looked the more dangerous side as they mounted sustained pressure and created chances. The switch to a back four undoubtedly had a major impact in that.

Negatives

It's another disappointing result and it could leave Milan further adrift of the top four after this round of fixtures is completed. The red card was a huge blow, but prior to that the team looked disjointed in their buildup play and their failure to press as a collective.

Manager rating out of 10

5 -- Montella deserves some credit for the changes he made in the second half, both tactical and personnel, as his side dealt with the sending off well and looked in control for the most part. However, his persistence with a back three and the delay in bringing on Patrick Cutrone were hugely frustrating.

Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Gianluigi Donnarumma, 6 -- Made a couple of decent stops but was otherwise untested as he kept things simple with his passing and was alert to any danger.

DF Cristian Zapata, 7 -- A solid outing for the Colombian. He defended well without making any mistakes as is always feared when he plays. Produced a great recovery challenge to get back and deny Gianluca Lapadula a goal-scoring opportunity.

DF Leonardo Bonucci, 4 -- Left his teammates short for the majority of the game with a reckless elbow and deserved his red card. Prior to the sending off, was easily spun by Andrey Galabinov to show more defensive frailty.

DF Ricardo Rodriguez, 6 -- Did well to deal with Adel Taarabt's trickery and movement in an overall decent defensive display. Switched to left-back after the sending off, and was his usual tidy self in terms of his distribution.

MF Fabio Borini, 7 -- Will seemingly always lack that bit of quality needed in the final third to really make himself a hero among supporters, but he's surely changed opinion of him now. Worked tirelessly off the ball and never shied away from attacking when possible. Another good performance.

MF Franck Kessie, 6 -- A poor first half as he was often too passive and sloppy, but really grabbed the game by the neck after the break and used his strength and powerful running to burst through in midfield with regularity. Milan need more of that moving forward.

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MF Lucas Biglia, 5 -- Always tidy and accurate with his passing, but doesn't have much personality in his game. Needs to express himself more, take risks and be more mobile, but in his defence he was perhaps restricted on this occasion with Milan being a man down.

MF Giacomo Bonaventura, 5 -- It's just not the same Bonaventura that we're used to. He tries to spark some life into the game, but is just falling short at the moment and to make matters worse, he came off with a reported muscular injury.

MF Suso, 7 -- Constantly got on the ball in the second half and tried to make something happen. Not accurate enough with his passing or shooting for the most part. Looked dangerous and more naturally suited to attacking down the right wing, which is where he should stay after this.

MF Hakan Calhanoglu, 5 -- Have to feel sorry for the Turkish playmaker, as he would have been desperate to bounce back and prove himself after a disappointing night in the Europa League. A positive start, but he had to be sacrificed after the Bonucci sending off.

FW Nikola Kalinic, 4 -- The jeering as he was substituted was a little harsh given the circumstances of the game, but that doesn't mask the fact that he was terrible. Made a nuisance of himself at times, but his touch wasn't there when it mattered and needed to be busier with his runs in behind to give his teammates an option as he was isolated, but he didn't help himself either.

Substitutes

DF Alessio Romagnoli, 7 -- Looked really composed after coming on to slot into the backline in place of Bonucci. Good to see he looked comfortable in a back four, as ultimately that has to be the way for Montella moving forward.

DF Davide Calabria, 6 -- Did a decent job on the right wing for the last half hour as was never troubled defensively but could have been more efficient with his crossing.

FW Patrick Cutrone, N/A -- Received a huge ovation after coming off the bench, and should have come on sooner. Did his best to lift the tempo and urgency for the final few minutes.

Sumeet Paul covers AC Milan for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter: @SP_Calcio.

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