Milan and Juventus both fell to home defeats on Sunday in Serie A, with the defending champions losing 5-2 at home to Sassuolo before Juventus, mired in mid-table following their 15-point penalty, going down 2-0 to Monza.
Stefano Pioli is under mounting pressure as the Milan manager following a fourth defeat in five matches. The hosts were comfortably second-best at San Siro in a bad-tempered game which saw 11 yellow cards shown, seven to Milan players and four for the visitors.
Olivier Giroud thought he had given Milan the lead in the eighth minute, but his celebrations were cut short after being ruled offside by VAR. Sassuolo, a lowly 16th in the table, went in front after 19 minutes when Domenico Berardi sent a cross into the box and an unmarked Gregoire Defrel tapped in.
Davide Frattesi doubled the lead two minutes later when he hammered a low shot into the net. Giroud pulled one back for Milan in the 24th minute, heading Davide Calabria’s cross into the top corner, but Berardi quickly restored Sassuolo’s two-goal lead before Andrea Consigli denied Ante Rebic in first-half stoppage time.
Milan went in 3-1 down and any hope of a comeback was all but ended when Armand Lauriente converted a penalty to make it 4-1 two minutes after the restart. Rebic did find the net in the 54th minute only for VAR to rule it out, before Matheus Henrique added the fifth for Sassuolo 11 minutes from time.
Divock Origi got Milan’s second late on, but the damage was done. The defeat keeps Milan in fifth place, 12 points behind the leaders, Napoli, who host Roma later on Sunday.
Juventus have dropped to 13th place in the table as they were overtaken by Monza after a 2-0 loss in Turin. Massimiliano Allegri’s side were docked 15 points this month following an investigation into the club’s transfer dealings and their hopes of a top-four finish now look remote.
Gianluca Caprari thought he had given promoted Monza the lead after 10 minutes, but he was ruled offside by VAR. The visitors did score after 18 minutes when José Machín sent a well-timed through ball to Patrick Ciurria, who shot high into the net.
Dany Mota doubled Monza’s lead six minutes before half-time as he picked up the ball inside the box, rounded Juve keeper Wojciech Szczesny and finished into the empty net. Juve dominated the second half but were repeatedly denied by the Monza keeper, Michele Di Gregorio, who made a particularly fine save to repel Manuel Locatelli’s shot.
“We were sluggish and didn’t even react after the first goal they had disallowed, which was a warning,” Allegri told Dazn after the game. “We’ve been making too many mistakes and haven’t had the right mentality, but the attitude in the second half was completely different.” “I don’t think we’d ever played a first half like that and we should reflect on that. It went better after the break, but we must admit responsibility for the overall performance. We were unbeaten at home until now. Monza are a good side, but we cannot concede those two goals so softly.”