Gennaro Gattuso should take his fair share of blame after setting up his team so rigidly causing the 60,000 fans in attendance to shift anxiously in their seats. Indeed, it was an anxious performance from the Rossoneri as instead of attacking with intent, they decided to cling on for dear life defensively. It could have been a lot worse were it not for Gianluigi Donnarumma's heroics and the stoic centre-back pairing of Alessio Romagnoli and Matteo Musacchio.
It was fortunate that Milan even scored and the fact that it was an own goal tells you all you need to know about their display. There was no fluidity whatsoever; the sort that had led fans to believe a new Milan was on the horizon; one capable of challenging for silverware in the near future. Krysztof Piatek was starved of service but showed his brilliance in leading the line and causing Sassuolo all sorts of problems leading to Andrea Consigli's dismissal.
If there was ever a moment for the critics to point out how Gattuso is still tactically inept, then this was it as he stifled Milan's creativity for a smash and grab sort of victory. However, he must realise that such tactics are not worthy of Champions League quality, that all it does is shows his inability and how far this Milan team are from truly reaching their potential. Many fans and pundits will overlook this game as the Milanese giants sit third for the first time since the 2012-13 season.
It is frustrating when the likes of Lucas Paqueta, Hakan Calhanoglu and Piatek are not allowed to display the full range of their abilities because if they are able to do so then Milan's search for success in the long-term run will be sustainable. Timid tactics and resorting to time-wasting should never be implemented as they are not worthy of the Rossoneri's illustrious history.