Thursday November 1 2018
Suso inspires Milan revival

Forget Gonzalo Higuain or Alessio Romagnoli, the key man for the Rossoneri right now is the silky Spaniard, writes Daryl Hammond.

What we saw from Suso in run up to Milan's first goal against Genoa was nothing new. Outfoxing his defender, cutting inside and unleashing a left-foot thunderbolt to beat a stunned goalkeeper.

Genoa fans who travelled up to Milan to watch their side lose 2-1 to an agonising late goal might remember him a little differently.

The Spanish winger spent his formative years in Italy on loan with the Rossoblu, still a fresh-faced 21-year-old.

Back then he was confident, sure, and skilled, no doubt, with a penchant for the spectacular. But these days there's more of an end product to back up the flashy game he showed when he first hit these shores.

Playing for Genoa back in the 2015-16 season he scored six goals in 20 appearances, which on the face of things is a passable ratio. However, all six of those goals come in only three matches. Three against relegated Frosinone, two at Sampdoria and one against Palermo. Otherwise his contributions were minor, as he registered only one assist that year. 

Now through five Coaches, three owners and countless players he is the picture of consistency at Milan. Through the turbulent years of change, his place on the right flank is assured.

With nine of his last goals in Serie A coming from outside the box, he is earning a reputation for his wonder goals, with the end of career highlight reel looking in good shape.

But it's his creativity that has really got the Rossoneri ticking. He leads everyone in Europe's top leagues in assists, his total of seven already matching his figure from last season, with a hat-trick of assists against Chievo a standout performance this season.

Of course, it helps having a world class striker to feed. The most common goal combination in Serie A this season has been the one that sees the Spaniard set up summer signing Gonzalo Higuain.

The Spaniard feels he is playing the best football of his career, and it’s difficult to argue with him. He sits with esteemed company, as both he and Juventus superstar Cristiano Ronaldo have made the most goal contributions in the league this season.

All the more amazing for Milan, considering the pittance of €1.3m they paid Liverpool for his development fee and the fact he rejected city rivals Inter.

Suso has spoken of his admiration for players like Lionel Messi, Eden Hazard and childhood hero Kaka. He rightly acknowledges he is not in the same class as those he admires. But it is more than talent that keeps him out of the conversation.

On the big stage, those players take over big games. Suso is yet to have too many big game performances in wearing red and black.

Of the 11 goal contributions he has made this season, only one has come against a team one would consider a rival of Milan; an assist in a 3-2 loss to Napoli. In games against Roma and Inter his contributions were limited.  

In games against Roma and Inter he was increasingly anonymous, as he looking increasingly like a flat track-bully. Great against Chievo, Sassuolo and Atalanta, not so much the bigger ones.

They are games that need to be won of course, but the way he took over the Milan derby two years ago, scoring twice in a 2-2 draw are the moments everyone remembers. His super strike to see them over the line against Sampdoria on the weekend is a good start.

Through his breakout years at Liverpool, loans at Almeria and Genoa and now his several seasons with Milan, it is easy to forget he is only 24-years-old. Set to become a father for the first time later this month, he is growing up on and off the pitch. 

With perspective it is clear to see how far he has come since his days with Genoa. As he further refines his game, he will have an impact at the top level. And Milan will be all the better for it.

Watch Serie A live in the UK on Premier Sports and get your first month free. £5.99 thereafter until September with promo code: ITALIA

Have your say...
In years gone by we wouldve come out of 2 tough games v Genoa and Udinese with half a squad with 2 points, this year we collected 6/6. These are the games which will make a difference to our season and frankly if we get UCL football I could care less how we play, we can worry about how we play once we're getting the results. 3 points is all that matters right now and this team is fighting for it. With Paqueta and Ibra in Jan it will add the much needed depth Gattuso is crying out for.
on the 5th November, 2018 at 5:52pm
Wow our best start to a season for a long time, back into the top 4 and looking like we really can challenge for top 4 and once again everyone here is moaning. Gattuso has 7 players injured, 5 starters but people really want to slate him for the teams performances. We havent been playing well, granted, but we've been collecting 3 points each week. All I hear about when Juve do this is how they have a winning emntality yet when Milan do the same we are labelled as lucky.
on the 5th November, 2018 at 5:50pm
@Giancarlo C's Mom

on the 5th November, 2018 at 11:03am
@ Viktor

Vikky's BELOVED ex-captain says, “Then, with time and looking from the outside, I realised that leaving Juventus wasn’t the right decision because ONLY HERE AND WITH THIS (BLACK AND WHITE) SHIRT can I express my potential on and off the field.

“Together with President Agnelli and my agent, I was LUCKY ENOUGH to return and I realised that was the ONLY THING I really wanted.”

LMAO... Clownucci seems to have betrayed you... LOSER.
on the 4th November, 2018 at 8:41pm
@Anono Im not buying anything. I have few sweaters from early 80s and thats that. Im loyal to my team and thats that. What you seem to neglect or deny is wether the team performs well, spend money, score goals, etc you stick to your team The fact that I have strong bonds to milan for personal reasons is another topic.
on the 4th November, 2018 at 3:02pm
I know exactly how 'devoted' you are. You have ink remember, heard it all before and ties fininvest and knowing Nordahl wasn't interest when you told me and not interested now.
Of course you stand by your team but trying to defend them the way you do when fans spend money on merchandise and tickets etc etc and they try to pull wool over their eye by pretending we have more than we do.
You are in exact kind of fan that they fool into buying more and more for half hearted performances!
on the 4th November, 2018 at 11:10am
@ vicky. Pls see 1st comment. Also dont get defensive as usual lol. You dont have any stars lol. Remember when you got your hopes up about leo b and last season lol and all the seasons before lol. How is your captain doing lol i am sure u have a lot to say about that lol. 8 years is a long time for you losers.
on the 4th November, 2018 at 5:12am

Who the hell said anything about superstar. And you have ZERO idea on how devoted I am to Milan. You stand by your team no matter superstar, relegation, whatever. My blood is red and black so keep you bs for yourself. Curva sud for life.
on the 4th November, 2018 at 1:04am
The guy your mocking is correct. Milan have nothing and Higuain is no Superstar, that's why Juve sent him packing. You claim to be this massive Milan fan so trying to defend this group is just ridiculous! I think true fans should speak the truth because defending what has been going on for the last 10 years at Milan is stupid. We have a group of above average players nothing more than that, Higuain might a stretch be classed as a good striker but no superstar.
on the 3rd November, 2018 at 3:04pm
@Maldini heir
Constantly moaning about managers, they change the manager and you are once again NOT happy and moaning.
Milan have no choice. You want to see a Conte or Lippi on our bench it will not happen it is the worst seat in football to have. Milan up until only a few months ago were owned by some Asian lot who turned out to have less money than when we started! No top manager would take this role, I mean Suso is classed as one of our best I think this really tells you the state of Milan!
on the 3rd November, 2018 at 2:57pm
Suso, average player made to look better than he is because we are so bad!
In a great team Suso would struggle to get this kind of stuff written about him.
I think he wastes more than he actually does but with the state of this Milan team I guess we should be happy with where we are currently sat.
Every game looks like hard work no matter who they are playing, I think we would struggle again a serie C side to be honest.
on the 3rd November, 2018 at 2:49pm
Very happy for Suso. He's been outstanding, carrying the creative burden on his shoulders. I just don't know how much longer he can keep this up.
Milan is so predictable and one-sided - attack down the right through Suso beating his man, cutting inside. The left wing is non-existent.
We won't be able to beat many big teams if we only threaten from one flank.
on the 2nd November, 2018 at 6:01pm

"Milan does not have superstars lol higuain and a bunch of other boys. Kinda like inter lol"

Thanks for the contribution now go back to playing with dolls and suck on your thumb.
on the 2nd November, 2018 at 10:26am
Minus the pace, his movement reminds me of Arjen Robben.
Of course eyes are on him and with top Spaniards wold class midfielders heading to international duties retirement, and if he took care of himself chances are he'll be regular in the N-team.
Fingers crossed we'd keep him then and would have a good team overall.
Forza Milan
on the 2nd November, 2018 at 3:08am
consistency. Suso will be a big part of that. I'm assuming Paquetá will then be on the left.
on the 1st November, 2018 at 11:13pm
Cagliari and this side could be challenging for the title. We need to remember this in January and in the summer when fans and the media are calling for an entire overhaul of the squad. Can Gattuso get this Milan side into the Champions League? We'll have to see. We definitely need to do something about the random drops in intensity we see in games like against Genoa. For those results which could've gone in our favour there's also as many that could've gone against us. We need to improve our
on the 1st November, 2018 at 11:12pm
The wins over Sampdoria and Genoa have not changed my view of Gattuso. I don't think he's the best coach in Serie A or even in the top 4 best coaches. And without that Milan will struggle to qualify for the Champions League since ultimately it is the coach that makes all of the difference. However, it does need to be said that if we had not conceded the last minute goals to Inter and Atalanta Milan would be joint second with Napoli and above Inter. Add to that the dropped points to Empoli and
on the 1st November, 2018 at 11:10pm
Milan started the game against Genoa quite well and then as usual dropped off. One of the things that worked well at the start was the dynamism where Suso moved inside. His goal came not from cutting inside from the right but from being in the centre. People who say he's a one trick pony don't seem to notice that he does put in crosses with his right foot. Defenders do have to figure out which way he'll go.
on the 1st November, 2018 at 11:07pm
Milan does not have superstars lol higuain and a bunch of other boys. Kinda like inter lol.
on the 1st November, 2018 at 9:18pm
Plain and simple when suso is on his game he can't be stopped. Once he finds consistency that will leap frog him into being a world class player. So far he's had a great season
on the 1st November, 2018 at 4:38pm
Without him on the pitch we look flat without ideas. He is 24 and will still improve. He should improve crossing with his right foot and his decision making at times. His dribbling, ball possession, movement off the ball and left foot are devastating.

If we can find a similar winger on the left flank we would be a force to be reckon with.

We are already the second best attack after Juve with 20 goals scored. We are also second for shots per game at 18.6!
on the 1st November, 2018 at 2:51pm
Suso has always been Milan’s more dangerous player. I wonder if his €40 million release clause is still in place? If yes then Inter should have triggered the clause rather than submitted half hearted bid. Not cheap but better than gambling it on 20-21 years old unproven player from another league.

He’s kinda one-trick pony though, with tendency to cut inside and shoot/cross always using left foot. Maybe that’s why he struggles against top defender. We didn’t give him space at all at the derby.
on the 1st November, 2018 at 12:40pm
Suso is our superstar and I've got a feeling that he may go to Real Madrid or other big Spanish giants in the summer. Please, Maldini and Leonardo keep Suso tightly.
on the 1st November, 2018 at 12:38pm

Post new comment

Your email address is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
If you have your own website, enter its address here.
Maximum 500 characters.
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Enter the characters shown in the image.
Your responses will be moderated, and sometimes edited, by Football Italia before appearing on the site. Your data may be made public and you accept our Privacy Policy. Please keep your comments clean and try to keep them relevant to the blog above. We reserve the right to reject views that we deem unsuitable for publication.