Sunday showdown for Allegri as alternatives emerge for Milan

Posted by Sumeet Paul

AP Photo/Luca BrunoDespite Milan reaching the UCL, Massimiliano Allegri looks to be on the way out

The decision is imminent. After having dinner with Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani on Thursday night, Milan's incumbent coach Massimiliano Allegri will have his fate revealed by the club on Sunday following a meeting with owner Silvio Berlusconi.

Having been postponed twice in the past week, thus leading to speculation Berlusconi is purposely snubbing Allegri in an effort to force his hand into resigning rather than being fired, it appears D-day is finally upon us.

- Allegri fate to be decided by Sunday

The idea of former Rossonero Clarence Seedorf replacing Allegri has been wholeheartedly rejected by the Curva Sud, who displayed a banner outside Via Turati last week merely stating: "Seedorf? No thanks."

Similarly, coaches and players both past and present have lent their support to the Italian tactician, believing that he has worked well and ought to stay, with Fabio Capello warning that coaching Milan "is not a joke" and that as a first experience for Seedorf it could be a massive risk.

Nevertheless, it would appear that negotiations and meetings centre on Allegri's departure rather than extending his stay, with Billy Costacurta suggesting that Berlusconi is "trying to get rid of him".

If that is indeed the case, it is rumoured that Roma are paying close attention to the situation, with a view to installing Allegri as their new coach for next season. Given the interest from the likes of PSG and Napoli before the arrival of Rafa Benitez, it is a reflection of how those within the football world view Allegri and the job he has done at San Siro.

As noted in previous blogs, there isn't a general sense of support for the 45-year-old, with opinion divided on whether he is the right man to take the club forward. However, given that he picked up the mantle of the post-Ancelotti era and has effectively rebuilt the squad in his three-year tenure, it remains a puzzling decision given the lack of stand-out replacements.

Nonetheless an intriguing prospect was introduced into the scenario in mid-week, with Corriere dello Sport speculating that former Milan midfielder Frank Rijkaard had emerged as a potential candidate.

The Dutchman undoubtedly possesses the experience following his successful stint in charge of Barcelona, although coaching roles at Galatasaray and Saudi Arabia have somewhat soured what appeared to be a promising managerial career.

Given his work in Catalunya though, where he helped usher in a sustained period of success by re-establishing players that had come through the youth ranks whilst simultaneously combining them with precious talents such as Ronaldinho, it could work again at Milan.

However, the timing is still all wrong considering that the project has already begun and the squad is being built. While new and exciting attacking ideas would be most welcome, who is to say that the replacement will not want to introduce their own players and methods, thus bringing back the instability of last September?

It may have been a struggle, but Allegri secured Champions League football. Having won the Scudetto in his first year in charge he has proven he is worthy of the job he currently holds. With the foundations now in place, he has all the elements to be successful again next season, but it appears as though Berlusconi's personal opinion matters most.

Previous comments suggest you are split in your opinion on Allegri. Instead, name your candidate to replace him and explain why he is ideal for the job.

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