How will Allegri handle big debuts?

BY foxsports • September 8, 2010

A match with Cesena would not usually capture the imagination of Milan fans.

However, this weekend's clash promises something special as Milan's two major signings, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Robinho, are set to make their Milan debut.

Not for a few years has there been much excitement amongst the Milan tifosi about the club's chances of success. But, with Milan's two latest signings, the biggest signings made by the club ever since the capture of Pato in 2008, there is much renewed optimism amongst the fans.

The match against Cesena will provide the first glimpse of the new look Milan attack which will be now headed by Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

But, just where Robinho will fit in is unclear and it will be very interesting as to how Max Allegri utilises his new Brazilian ace.

Allegri has decided to set Milan up in a similar fashion though not identical to that employed by his predecessor, Leonardo, last term. With this system Ronaldinho can be at his best and given his phenomenal talent, not to mention his scintillating form of late, it is with good reason that this needs to stay unchanged, as surely it will.

With Pato and Ibrahimovic most likely to take up the other two roles in attack, there is actually no room for Robinho to play from the start.

The Milan midfield simply does not have the strength and depth to be reduced to two in order to allow for a four-pronged attack to be deployed with Robinho new addition.

It is best if a rotation system is used. Last year Milan suffered when Pato was injured and he is an injury-prone player. If Robinho is kept fresh, he will fit in seamlessly if needed.

It is a similar case with Ronaldinho. Without him on the field, the Milan attack loses its main protagonist. But, with a fresh Robinho, there is ready made replacement who can help curtail the loss of the Milan No. 80.

The problem with such a policy is that Robinho may become unsettled, something that has happened before. Allegri has the task of keeping Robinho happy, which is easier said than done.

However, if Milan are serious about pushing for honors, then given the strength of the bench and the midfield, there really is no choice for Allegri but to rotate the players and keep them happy.

Being a manager is not an easy job.

Frank Tigani is a featured columnist for Bleacher Report, the open source sports network.

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