Milik, decisive goal in Juve-Lecce: “Whether you play 5 minutes or start, I do mine”

The Pole was decisive against Lecce: two shots, one goal. But also a participation in the game other than Vlahovic. With an eloquent piece of data that illustrates his impact on Juve’s results when he scores

Giuseppe Nigro

He was present at his first match as a starter. In one evening Arkadiusz Milik played more minutes (78) than he had played so far (63, plus various recoveries) in five games, always coming off the bench, but never before the 70th minute in Empoli, when he only needed about twenty minutes to make an impact anyway, scoring Chiesa for 2-0. He tried again this time, with a through ball to kiss Federico, exactly halfway through the first half. A minute earlier he had attempted to do his own thing with a shot from outside which called for Falcone to save: it had been his only shot, before the touch in the 57th minute to correct Rabiot’s header into the net with the goal which earned the return to success for Juventus after the reverse against Sassuolo.


It was difficult to find space behind these Chiesa and Vlahovic, who had started the season with 7 goals between them in the first four games. What opened the field for him from the start against Lecce were the liveliness always shown even in the few moments (excluding Sassuolo), the necessary physical management of the Serbian and the chance of turnover offered by the only week for quite a while in which with three matches in eight days Juve doesn’t realize they’re not making the cups: “This year there’s a lot of competition, we have strong players up front – commented Arek to Dazn at the end of the match -. I do my thing, I focus on what I have to do on the pitch. If the coach makes me play for 5 or 10 minutes I do my best, if he makes me play from the start I do my best. I don’t look at the others, the season is long and we’ll see what happens.”


It happened in the meantime that he didn’t miss the opportunity available. But to say it was overwhelming would be misleading. Just two shots in fact, which is most of what is asked of those in the profession, but it would be ungenerous not to see everything else. That is, a participation in the game that is spontaneously different from what Vlahovic is working on, tends more to come together to sew up the game, freeing up the offensive front for Chiesa and for those who want to move up: duels won, 23 positive passes out of 24 total, one that helps to build. But bites in the goal area zero, up to that touch of a bird of prey. Because in the cliché of the true center forward there is also the gift of being the one who only needs half the ball. What Milik needed to find the goal he had been missing for a lifetime, almost 5 months to be precise, and oh well, summer was involved but since that goal in the 1-1 draw in Bologna 429 minutes have passed without scoring in Serie A: fasting broken.


There is a piece of data from the Opta surveys that tells a lot about Milik’s impact, especially if it can be used as added value for a department that also relies on other resources: since he joined Juventus the Pole has scored in eight matches of the championship, and of these the Lady has won five and drawn three. Decisive. If he scores he doesn’t lose. “It is certainly a very important goal because he gave us the victory – said Arek at the end of the match -. It was important after the defeat against Sassuolo to get the three points at home. I’m happy with the first goal of the year, it gives me a lot of confidence: it was important to win and we did it.” And again: “We struggled a bit in the first half, but sometimes games are like that. The important thing is that in the end we brought home the victory. We know that we can improve a lot and we must, we can play better and we will, but it takes time: above all we needed to win, we can’t lose points at home.” We already know that it won’t happen if Milik scores.