Marco Giampaolo
MILAN, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 29: AC Milan coach Marco Giampaolo looks on during the Serie A match between AC Milan and ACF Fiorentina at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on September 29, 2019 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Emilio Andreoli/Getty Images)

AC Milan have fired coach Marco Giampaolo after just seven games in charge, according to Fabrizio Romano.  Giampaolo is set to be replaced by former Lazio and Fiorentina boss Stefano Pioli, who will be Milan’s ninth coach since firing Max Allegri in 2014, and it continues another chaotic year of questionable decisions at Milan.

AC Milan Sack Marco Giampaolo

He was in charge for just seven games, but apparently nine points from seven games aren’t enough for Ivan Gazidis and Milan management.  Given that Milan need to make it into the Champions League, it’s not a huge shock.  They are already four points outside the top four.

That does not mean that Marco Giampaolo was given a fair shot, nor was he blameless either.  His squad is not great, and many of his new signings were injured on their pre-season trip to the US.  It’s tough to build a team when important players like Theo Hernandez, Rafael Leao, and Ismael Bennacer all missing preseason.

Where Giampaolo lost his job was failing to deal with those problems correctly.  He decided to play Hakan Calhanoglu, a winger, at the base of his midfield.  He tried to play Suso, an inverted right-winger, as his number ten, a decision that has failed spectacularly.

So Gazidis hit the eject button before things got out of hand, and in comes Stefano Pioli, a cool head, who will put these players in the right positions to succeed.  He will have to figure out how to get Krzysztof Piatek scoring again.  The Polish striker has only found the back of the net twice, both from the penalty spot this season.

Pioli’s only task is to get AC Milan back into the Champions League.  It’s hard to tell if that goal is still obtainable, but Pioli’s job will depend on it.  Any failure to qualify and it would likely be the last act for Pioli as Milan boss.  The fact that that is the case might say more about AC Milan’s problems than anything else.

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