Four. Four players on the night were awarded positive scores by the BWRAO community. Two of which were subs, and one of which was given his upvote almost certainly due to his performance in an altered position. To say that readers were upset with the performances of Max Allegri’s starting lineup would be an understatement.
Today’s edition is going to include more of my thoughts than usual, because I have a lot to say about this team right now. If you’re only going to read one of my results pieces, this is the one..
Here are the full results:
Higuain earned his second MoTM award in a row, and as consistency is to be highlighted with him, it’s his 5th positive rating in a row. His good form continues with another top 10 season performance at 83%. He’s our 90 million Euro man and right now he’s playing like it, and earning some points that the rest of the team debatably didn’t earn. Keep at it Gonzalo. He moves into 11th overall on the season (unofficial starting XI) and 1st on the team in the Champions League. Keep it up, Gonzalo.
Douglas Costa was good in his limited minutes and earned a score of +43%, as well as Blaise Matuidi who earned +41% in his limited minutes. Both these players have earned a starting position at this point, they’ve just looked better than Mario Mandzukic and Sami Khedira, respectively. Costa moves into 7th on the team for the season, and Matuidi stays in 5th. Play them.
The other positive player was Juan Cuadrado, who earned more downvotes than the others, likely due to his weak first half. His contributions that earned him his 32% upvotes came when he was moved to RB, signalling that he should probably be tried there more often. I think there’s at least a chance that he plays significantly better than Licht and MDS have so far this season, and to not even try it out would be a bad move. He’s 15th in the rankings for the team and 11th in Champions League. He’s not contributing much at RW, try him at RB or put him on the bench.
Onto the negatives, Max Allegri finished with the third lowest rating at an abysmal -50%. I want to go on record that I’m having my doubts on whether he can take this team to the next level. I’m not saying he should be removed yet, but he needs to figure out a way to get this team firing when it matters again. Integrating Costa and Rugani into the team nearly full-time would be where I would start. His season rating is +3% right now, but -22% in Champions League. He needs to change his approach from ‘Cardiff lineup’ because as we saw in Cardiff, ‘Cardiff lineup’ isn’t perfect.
Alex Sandro was next with -51%. He simply hasn’t been the same elite LB we saw last season. Considering Asamoah is his backup, with all due respect to Asamoah, he just needs to keep playing and try to get out of this funk. While Asamoah is a dependable backup, we need our left back back (ha) in form if we have any chance of getting back to where we want to be.
Mario Mandzukic earned the lowest rating tonight with -54% of votes. A quiet performance vs. Milan and the worst against Sporting is exactly how to lose your job after being given a second yellow for dissent and having Douglas Costa waiting behind you. He’s done more than enough to lose his starting spot for the time being, although there is certainly a spot for him in the squad right now as Higuain’s backup. He does still have the 7th best ranking in the CL thus far, but 14th overall.
Special shout-out to Paulo Dybala and Sami Khedira who also got whacked in the ratings earning -43% and -48%, respectively. Dybala is slowly ruining the near flawless ratings he earned at the beginning of the year, and giving basis to the idea that he struggles in the CL. It’s only four games, but he needs to improve there. Khedira is only ahead of Benatia and MDS in the overall rankings, and is dead last in the CL.
Thanks for voting. Follow me on twitter: @AnthonyTurgelis.