AC Milan's late activity in the summer transfer window may not guarantee the club success this season, but at least the tifosi can look ahead with a degree of enthusiasm.
For most of the summer, it looked as if the Rossoneri were content to keep the faith with a squad that finished third last season and were beaten 7-2 on aggregate by Manchester United in the Champions League second round.
But the arrivals of Zlatan Ibrahimovic on loan from Barcelona and Robinho in a permanent move from Manchester City will at least provide a temporary illusion that the club can return to former glories, even if the reality may be different.
So what can Milan fans expect this season? A four-man attack featuring Ronaldinho, Alexandre Pato and Robinho behind Zlatan Ibrahimovic is a possibility, although it remains to be seen whether coach Massimiliano Allegri will sacrifice one of these, or at least rotate, with both Serie A and the Champions League to consider.
The club also signed Kevin-Prince Boateng on loan in the summer but there have to be question marks about his place in a first-choice starting line-up, despite the Ghanaian being in better form than the other four players.
Milan's midfield is aging. Massimo Ambrosini, Andrea Pirlo and Clarence Seedorf have served the club with distinction over the years, but I wonder if they have the legs for another two-pronged assault on Serie A and the Champions League. Ronaldinho, Robinho and Zlatan are hardly renowned for their diligent tracking back when out of possession; do the midfielders have what it takes to compensate for the lack of workrate further up the field? This is why we may see Matthieu Flamini more to the fore this season, because the Frenchman will run all day.
So Milan without the ball this season may be just as fascinating as Milan with the ball and Rossoneri fans can expect the proverbial 'rollercoaster ride.'
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