Week 37: Milan – Bologna

Follow the match as it happens, on the forum.

The week 36 1-1 tie versus Atalanta condemned the team into possible July fixtures to qualify for the Europa League proper. While European football is in Milan’s DNA and the Europa League provides exposure and limited riches playing qualifying games in July will hurt the team in another way as they limit the long planned July friendlies in China. Fiorentina lost to Napoli in those teams’ week 37 encounter so a win versus Bologna fulfils wishes of European participation, repeatedly expressed by Marco Fassone and others in charge of Milan.

Milan’s recent form has been anything but impressive and Montella took advantage of both absentees and returnees to give Montolivo a first start in a long time. The new and nominal 3-5-2 used versus Atalanta this late in the season added question marks for the coach but with one win in the previous six he was perhaps entitled to change the make up of the team. In the end the point meant little and a Suso yellow has ruled him out of this fixture vs Bologna at the San Siro.

Bologna have been scoring and conceding many goals in recent weeks and in their last four games – where they have a record of two wins and two losses – they have scored ten and allowed seven. Milan’s suspect three man defense will need to have a mistake free game and secure European football with three points. No excuses even though Bologna have shown they can score in bunches. The aforementioned 3-5-2 is set to include both Lapadula and Bacca starting together with Deulofeu possibly forming a trio to make it look more like a 3-4-3. Paletta might get a start instead of Gomez along side Zapata and Romagnoli. Vangioni will start in De Sciglio’s spot because the latter suffered a hamstring injury late in the Atalanta match and will miss the final to matches of the season, and if transfer talk is anything to go by he might have played his last Milan match altogether.