Milan are in deep crisis after a 2-0 home defeat to a weakened Fiorentina, as Juan Manuel Vargas and Borja Valero silenced San Siro.
The Viola were furious after a 2-1 defeat to Napoli, which saw Juan Cuadrado unfairly sent off and the ban not revoked despite video evidence. He missed out along with the injured Mario Gomez, David Pizarro and Josip Ilicic. Max Allegri was still feeling the pressure after a midweek 1-1 draw with Lazio left the Rossoneri in 10th place. Philippe Mexes was suspended with Matias Silvestre, Mattia De Sciglio, Daniele Bonera, Stephan El Shaarawy and Giampaolo Pazzini sidelined.
Massimo Ambrosini recovered from injury in time to face his former club and was given a warm welcome by the supporters. A banner read: ‘18 years of your career, your name in Rossoneri history.’
Gabriel stuck out a hand to intercept a dangerous Ryder Matos counter-attack for Giuseppe Rossi, while Neto smothered a weak Sulley Muntari finish set up by Kaka.
Fiorentina took the lead when a Juan Manuel Vargas low free kick took a deflection off Muntari in the wall to wrong-foot Gabriel, flying into the far bottom corner.
Ambrosini was making his comeback from injury and hobbled off again after 33 minutes to make way for Matias Vecino.
Kaka’s free kick found Cristian Zaccardo in the box for a fresh-air volley, while Mario Balotelli needed treatment for a knock to the back when he walked into Gonzalo Rodriguez.
Balotelli went down in the box, but replays clearly show he kicked out at Manuel Pasqual, so the referee did well to wave play on.
Alberto Aquilani had already been booked when he held back Balotelli in midfield, running a real risk of a red. Balotelli did get a yellow card for a completely pointless shove in the back on Neto when the ball was running out of play and will be suspended against Chievo. It was his fourth booking of the Serie A season.
The Rossoneri struggled a great deal to get anywhere near Neto’s goal, Zaccardo unable to keep his header on target from a corner.
Instead, Fiorentina doubled their lead with Borja Valero, who was ready to tap in when Gabriel slapped away a Joaquin cross from the right. The Spaniard had also scored in last season’s Viola victory at San Siro. At this goal, Adriano Galliani left his seat in the stands, as the crisis at Milan is escalating.
Riccardo Saponara had the chance to get the Rossoneri right back into it, but ballooned Ignazio Abate’s cross over the bar.
Matos drilled wide of the upright and the fans vented their frustration, including a banner pointing out they had warned this team needed a defender and midfielder rather than another striker.