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Milan 3-0 Sampdoria: Rampant Rossoneri Crush Sorry Samp


AC Milan cruised to a 3-0 victory over an awful Sampdoria side at San Siro on Saturday evening. Marco Borriello gave the hosts the lead after less than two minutes, and Clarence Seedorf and Alexandre Pato secured the three points before half-time.

Luca Antonini started at left-back for the hosts, while Klaas-Jan Huntelaar started on the bench. Sampdoria captain Angelo Palombo didn't travel for the clash, and was replaced by Fernando Tissone in the middle of the pitch.

Samp kicked off the match, but were behind within 90 seconds. A loose pass gave Antonini possession in the Milan half - the full-back burst forward and fed Ronaldinho, who sent a delightful cross in for Marco Borriello to head home from close range.

The Rossoneri were rampaging forward in the early stages, with Ronaldinho and Pato looking to exploit the flanks. Tissone and Antonio Cassano were trying to spark the visitors into life, but Dida was a mere spectator in the early stages.

The lead could have been doubled in the 11th minute as Ronaldinho sent another excellent diagonal ball into the area, but Pato couldn't quite get on the end of it.

After a high tempo start, the Rossoneri were content to sit back a little, allowing Sampdoria to press a slightly higher line, but the Blucerchiati were finding it difficult to win the ball off the hosts.

Samp's lack of defensive discipline cost them in the 22nd minute as Ronaldinho exchanged a one-two with Clarence Seedorf, who rifled a shot into the top right hand corner. It capped an excellent move from Milan, and they nearly scored a third moments later but Luca Castellazzi was quickly out at Pato's feet.

It was three in the 24th minute, as Borriello's header found Pato ten yards out - the Brazilian's first shot was saved by Castellazzi but 'the Duck' made no mistake with the rebound.

Pietro Accardi conceded a free kick 20 yards out on the half hour, but Ronaldinho's effort was blasted over the crossbar. The Sampdoria defence were clearly struggling to cope with the Rossoneri attacks, while Cassano and Giampaolo Pazzini were cutting lonely figures at the other end of the pitch.

Ignazio Abate was brought on for Ronaldinho, who looked to have picked up a slight muscular problem, in the 34th minute, and should have set up Milan's fourth moments later. A long ball from Pirlo found the substitute on the right wing, but Pato couldn't capitalise on Abate's low cross.

The first yellow card was brandished in the 40th minute, with Tissone receiving a booking for a clumsy tackle on the lively Antonini. The Blucerchiati's frustrations were becoming increasingly evident, and Gigi Del Neri would have been glad to get his troops in for half-time with the score standing at 3-0.


It was all too easy for Milan

Despite being thoroughly outplayed in the first 45 minutes, Sampdoria chose not to make any substitutions at half-time.

Abate's pace was causing the visitors some real problems on the right hand side, and Stefano Lucchini was booked for a late challenge as Abate threatened to break free on the wing. The substitute then had half a chance to score, but there was just too much weight on Pato's inviting cross.

Sampdoria had their first clear opportunity in the 56th minute, when Franco Semioli and Cassano combined on the right hand side to set up Reto Ziegler, but his shot was well blocked by Gianluca Zambrotta.

The game had slowed to the pace of a training match, but Sampdoria were still struggling to get much possession. Milan were still looking for a fourth goal though, and Pato nearly found it in the 63rd minute as he skipped past two challenges but saw his shot parried behind by Castellazzi.

Milan continued to dominate possession, and Leonardo looked to freshen things up by bringing on Klaas-Jan Huntelaar with 20 minutes to go. However, neither side were showing any real inclination to bring the tempo of the game above walking pace; Milan were looking to conserve energy for their Champions League tie while Samp were on a damage limitation exercise.

Dida was called into action in the 83rd minute from Tissone's long range shot, but it was a comfortable save for the 'keeper, who was a spectator for much of the evening.

Huntelaar nearly set up Seedorf for the elusive fourth goal, but after some excellent work from the striker to hold off a host of defenders, Seedorf blasted his shot off target.

Milan cruised through the final few minutes of the game and will be delighted with the performance, but it was another away defeat for the beleaguered Blucerchiati.

Anthony Wright, Goal.com