Witnessing AC Milan labour to a 1-1 draw against Atalanta feels like watching the same movie again. This is because Milan's woes are a repeated narrative and for the Rossoneri it is crystal clear that they need a top striker.
Before the season started, numerous names were linked to the Milanese giants as the new owners of the club looked to propel them into the elite category once again. Andrea Belotti, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alvaro Morata were some of the big names connected to the seven time European Cup winners. However Milan finally settled on the Portugese prodigy Andre Silva and secured the services of Nikola Kalinic on a loan deal from Fiorentina. Surprisingly another striker emerged from the youth setup in the form of Patrick Cutrone with his performances in the pre-season forcing former coach Vincenzo Montella to include him in the senior squad
It must be said that among the aforementioned strikers, it has been Cutrone that has been the most impressive. His work rate and poaching abilities have caused Milan's fans to liken him to Filippo Inzaghi. The teenager is currently Milan's top scorer with eight goals in all competitions: a testament to his abilities. While it is impressive for a 20-year-old Serie A debutant, the problem is when he fails to shine, the goals tend to dry up too for Milan.
Take the most recent example in the Coppa Italia final against Juventus, Cutrone started the game however he faded badly and failed to score. He was eventually replaced by Kalinic who was atrocious and ended up scoring an own goal to compound the matter. Of course Gianluigi Donnarumma's errors did not help as well. But the crux of the matter is crystallised here. Milan's strikers aren't good enough.
Kalinic has endured a torrid time in Milan. The Croatian never really settled at the club. From a fractious relationship with the Milan fans to training ground bust-ups with Gennaro Gattuso, he is clearly set for a move away from the club with pundits believing he is a waste of money. A meagre five goals scored also did not help his cause. It can be argued that the system used by Gattuso at times left him isolated; however a striker of his experience certainly needs to do better.
If Kalinic was a wrong investment, Silva can be described as a flop signing. The 22-year-old went from being a star in the Portugese top flight to a failure in Serie A. It must be maintained that Silva is undeniably talented however he might not quite be ready for the physical demands of a higher level of football. At times when donning the Milan jersey, he looked bereft of ideas and the watertight defences of Serie A seemed to overwhelm him. From netting 17 goals in in the Primeira Liga to hitting the target only twice in Italy, it proved that Silva has yet to reach his potential. And Gattuso might have just hit the nail on the head when he said that the Portuguese must do more.
If the 18 time Scudetto winners are to return the glory of yesteryears, they need to recalibrate their transfer policy in the summer and go after top marksmen. It wouldn't hurt to maybe start scouring in Serie A. Edin Dzeko and Mario Mandzukic wouldn't be too bad of a start now would it.