Milan were on the brink of their first Serie A defeat in 23 games before Theo Hernandez scored twice to draw 2-2 with Parma on Sunday.
Theo Hernandez scored twice as Milan recovered from two goals behind to draw 2-2 with Parma and maintain their unbeaten start in Serie A.
The hosts appeared to be heading for their first defeat in 23 league games – and the first in 11 games this season – after Hernani and Jasmin Kurtic put control of Parma.
But Milan showed exactly the reason for the team’s top spot thanks to two goals scored by Hernandez – the equalizer in the 91st minute – as they deepened Sunday’s game at the San Siro.
The point was the least worthy of Stefano Pioli’s men, after hitting the goal frame four times – Hakan Calhanoglu was in charge of three of them – and a shot between the visitors’ goals was canceled.
AC Milan (acmilan) December 13, 2020
Hernani walked away from Gianluigi Donnarumma in the opening match after a good showing from Gervinho, who made his league debut as Pierre Calolo – an early substitute for injured Matteo Gabia – and pulled the ball back towards the penalty spot.
Milan thought they were back on level 10 minutes later with Samo Castillejo’s tackle after Brahim Diaz crossed Hernandez into the attacking midfielder’s path, but VAR kept her from offside.
Diaz then hit the crossbar, five seconds before Calhanoglu equalized with a shot that hit the surface of the ground as Milan pressed hard to equalize before the end of the first half.
The owners of the land were more frustrated when he hit Calehanoglu outside the post with a free kick, then hit the crossbar on both sides of the half.
With Bewley accusing the corpses forward, Hernani sent a cross from the right that cleared Andreas Cornelius but was shot into the net by Cortic’s unmarked header in the middle.
Milan’s response was immediate, as Hernandez sneaked out to meet Berkina Kalahanoglu as the hosts scored in the 31st successive league match.
After interrogating away for the next half hour, Hernandez found a way to pass a second time as he reacted faster to launch a loose ball into the lower corner and salvage a late point.
what does that mean? Chasing the package fill the gap
Inter, Napoli and Juventus had wins earlier on Sunday to put pressure on Milan at the top of the standings.
It’s hard to say how Bioli’s men failed to win this match, with 65 per cent and 26 shots – six of them on target – but the late point may prove formidable in the grand scheme of things.
The team is three points ahead of arch-rivals and closest rivals Inter, with Napoli and Juventus another point behind in the exciting Scudetto.
Hernandez will grab the headlines thanks to the second half brace, but Hernani also deserves credit for his impressive attacking show in the San Siro.
His opening match ending was impressive, leaving Donnarumma rooted in his place, providing good help to Cortic’s header that seemed to be the winner until Hernandez showed up in the last moments.
Milan striker Calhanoglu will have a smash of luck after he nearly missed a hat-trick, coming from the six shots he managed in 90 minutes.
He is the fourth Serie A player to hit woodwork three times in the same game since Opta started recording such data in 2004-05, along with Ciro Immobile (versus Bologna in 2017), Mohamed Salah (against Bologna in 2016) and Arturo de Napoli (against Sampdoria in 2005).
AC Milan (acmilan) December 13, 2020
Facts about Opta:
Milan have avoided defeat in their first 11 league season matches for the first time since the 2003-04 season
After defeating Atletico Madrid on Saturday, Milan are the only team unbeaten in the first five European leagues after the closure.
– No team has hit woodwork more than Milan in the top flight this season (11).
– Hernani (13th minute) scored the fastest goals for Parma against Milan in the Italian League since Antonio Cassano in March 2014 (nine minutes).
Hernandez is the first Milan defender to score a brace in Serie A since Alessandro Nesta in October 2009 against Chievo.
Milan returned to Serie A on Wednesday with a trip to Genoa, while Parma host Cagliari on the same day.