This is not the best of time for Nigeria and AC Milan dashing winger, Samuel Chukwueze and his teammates after they were humiliated 5-1 in a Milan derby by Inter at the San Siro.
Although the Nigerian forward came in as a substitute in the second half with little to blame him for AC Milan performance, his coach, Stefano Pioli, who refused to apologise to the club’s supporters after the game is now at war with a section of their fans.
Saturday night’s thrashing was their fifth consecutive defeat by Inter this year but there was no show of contrition afterwards.
“I do not agree with this idea of apologising to the fans,” said an angry Pioli.
“Do you think we lost 5-1 to Inter on purpose and lose the derby? We are disappointed, just as the fans are.
“You should only apologise when you do something wrong on purpose.”
Pushed further on the subject by reporters, he replied: “You turn around and look at what you want. We lost five derbies and will try to do better.”
The result continued Inter’s perfect start to the season with four wins from four but represented a hefty first loss for Pioli’s Milan.
They lost both legs of their Champions League semi-final meeting with Inter, as well as the corresponding league game 1-0 in February.
Milan also suffered a 3-0 loss to their rivals in the Italian Super Cup in January, meaning they have scored only once and conceded 12 times in five meetings.
“Inter are strong, that is not surprising. But the result is too heavy considering our performance,” Pioli added.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan opened the scoring just five minutes at San Siro, with Marcus Thuram’s long-range strike doubling their lead.
Rafael Leao pulled a goal back for Milan on 57th minute but further goals by Mkhitaryan, Hakan Calhanoglu, a penalty, and Davide Frattesi handed Inter an emphatic win.