Montpellier bring in Niang on loan
AC Milan forward M'baye Niang has joined Montpellier on loan until the end of the season.
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Niang, 19, joined Milan from Caen in 2012 but this campaign he has made just one Serie A start for the club.
With Keisuke Honda arriving next month and Giampaolo Pazzini now back from injury, the chances of Niang featuring more frequently in 2014 were even slimmer.
AC Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri hopes the Frenchman will come back even stronger from his time back in his homeland, although Montpellier have an option to make the deal permanent.
"It's a good option for him," Allegri said. "He needs to be playing. At his age, most lads are still playing in the youth team and maybe he's had too much responsibility placed on him when he should have been allowed to grow.
"There are times when things go well and times when they don't, but this is all part of a lad's growth and it happened with Stephan El Shaarawy too."
El Shaarawy flourished during a loan spell with Serie B side Padova, joining Milan from Serie A rivals Genoa when he was closer to being the finished article.