Assessing Allegri's legacy at Milan

Posted by Sumeet Paul

Following the 4-3 loss to Sassuolo on Sunday night, the writing was on the wall for AC Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri as Barbara Berlusconi insisted that a change was "necessary and urgent" and that it was "no longer tolerable" for Rossoneri supporters to watch such performances.

Despite Allegri revealing that he would leave the club at the end of the season when his contract expired, Milan have decided to push forward his departure, which was confirmed with an official statement on Monday morning.

Milan are still participating in both the Coppa Italia and Champions League, and while there is a possibility of salvaging something from this season and simultaneously looking to the future, it is evident that the Milan hierarchy finally felt that Allegri was no longer the right man for the job.

- Allegri sacked as AC Milan coach
- Domenico Berardi thrilled with display
- Paul: Berardi's Sassuolo show stuns Milan

Much was said in the aftermath of Allegri's decision to publicly reveal he would leave at the end of the campaign, with supporters and critics alike arguing over whether or not his tenure could be judged a success.

While it is important to recognise his achievements in ending a seven-year wait for a Scudetto, and arguably keeping Milan competitive during a period of transition and austerity, there are various areas in which he has undoubtedly failed.

Perhaps tactically limited and negative in his approach, Allegri sacrificed elements of previously successful squads and transformed the team into a more workmanlike outfit that lacked flair and imagination.

His reliance on individual talents made Milan one-dimensional and predictable at times. Despite never wavering in his faith of the defence, it has not been at a sufficient standard for over a year and the midfield has become burdened with a negative mentality.

Again, Allegri can't be solely blamed for the Rossoneri's problems over the past two years, and as a result the situation continues to split opinion on whether or not he had a positive contribution or only served to add to the problem.

Former coaches and peers continue to praise him, while the Curva Sud stood by him during troubled times earlier this season. However, for the most part, Milan supporters have been left disillusioned with how the club has slipped down the standings of Italian football; ultimately the coach will bear the brunt of their frustration.

Allegri will now perhaps move on and obtain a similarly prestigious job, but the situation at Milan dictates that the timing is right to make a change and bring in someone capable of dealing with the limited resources and extracting the best from the current squad.

Former star Zvonimir Boban claimed that this Milan side has "no soul", with reports suggesting that Clarence Seedorf could be tasked with restoring it. The Dutchman is still a risky appointment given that he has no previous managerial experience, but he does remain an intriguing option.

While results have been difficult to tolerate this season, the change in style, approach and repeated mistakes have arguably been the worst aspect of the Allegri era. He may not be remembered fondly by most, but given the situation around him and timing, he shouldn't be held accountable for Milan's downfall in its entirety.

Nevertheless, his sacking became a necessity, and it is hoped that the next coach can restore the joy that has long been associated with watching Milan, whilst also leading them to a successful future.

Was the time right to sack Allegri or should he have gone much earlier? Who is the best candidate to replace him with Pippo Inzaghi also linked with the post?

For all the latest Milan and Serie A news, you can follow me on Twitter @italiafooty


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