Seven players Milan should look to sell

Posted by Sumeet Paul

Antonio NocerinoAllsportCould Antonio Nocerino's future lay away from AC Milan?

The Coppa Italia exit to Udinese on Wednesday night brought back into question the standard of the current Milan squad, with transfer speculation this month suggesting some questionable moves in the market might lie ahead.

With Clarence Seedorf conceding that he will need time to implement his style of football as he looks to build a new project with the Rossoneri, it is unclear at this stage whether or not he will be forced to acquire players in January in order to help him achieve his objective.

Perhaps the more logical solution to the current situation at Milan would be to wait until the summer, when the Dutchman can really stamp his mark on this squad and have time to apply his ideologies.

However, at this stage, it is arguably worth considering which players he will need to offload in order to not only raise funds, but also to create space in the squad for others to develop.

Given his lack of experience and the pressure that he has immediately come under, it is feasible that he might decide to play safe and place his trust in the more experienced members of the squad to help him settle into his new role.

While that might seem like a sensible plan, it is one that will not help him in the long term, assuming that he is given the opportunity to see his contract through and potentially earn an extension -- should he be successful.

Nevertheless, he will have selection headaches ahead, and perhaps there is no better place to start than between the posts.

Marco Amelia

There had been previous suggestions that Christian Abbiati would retire at the end of the season, but given his experience and history with the club, he still has much to offer Milan. Instead, there is the option of promoting Gabriel to first choice or signing a young talent, such as Mattia Perin, and keeping Abbiati to help them develop which, in turn, sees Amelia gain first-team football elsewhere.

Daniele Bonera

Bonera is a prime example of how Seedorf will be tempted into selecting players he feels he can rely on. Does the veteran instil confidence that he can contribute to maintaining a consistently solid defensive line? Not for me.

Kevin Constant and Cristian Zaccardo

Squad depth has become an essential part of modern day football, and with the rigours of numerous competitions, it is vital to have cover in each area of the pitch. However, while Mattia De Sciglio and Ignazio Abate will be first choice full-backs for years to come, are Constant and Zaccardo of a sufficient standard to help improve the team in the absence of the two Italy internationals?

Antonio Nocerino

While there is a great deal of frustration with Nocerino, there should also be a sense of sympathy, too. The former Palermo star has never been able to replicate the form he showed in his first season with Milan, and, unfortunately, being a workhorse just isn't enough to be successful in this team anymore. Sulley Muntari arguably falls into the same category, but the Ghanaian continues to contribute key goals as Nocerino heads for London.

Valter Birsa

It might seem slightly unfair including Birsa in this list, as he has done a decent job of dismissing the notion that he wasn't good enough for Milan. His left foot is undoubtedly an asset, but is he the type of player that can be a star or improve others around him? Debatable.

Robinho

Robinho has been linked with a return to his homeland over the past few transfer windows, and, despite featuring heavily in Seedorf's first two games, he shouldn't have a long-term future at the club. He has been past his prime for some time, and, while he might contribute here or there, his loss of pace and trickery should see him head for the exit door.

It is unlikely that Seedorf will agree with the majority of the reasons above, but by removing those players from the squad, it will give the likes of Bryan Cristante and Riccardo Saponara room to develop and, in turn, Milan will be more competitive in the long run.

Michael Essien's arrival has its positives, as ultimately Milan need to advance in the Champions League -- even if it only benefits them financially -- as the only Italian team left in the competition. However, considering the reviews from certain Chelsea fans, he might be well beyond his prime.

Agree with the list above, or should they stay? Are there other players you would add to the list?

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

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