An inconsistent Milan remains decimated by absentees. Facing a Manchester United team somewhat in a similar situation in the English Premier League doesn’t really come at a good time.
All of Ibrahimovic, Mandzukic, Hernandez, Bennacer, Rebic and Calhanoglu are missing and remained in Milan. Add to that Romagnoli seems to have suffered a leg issue and may not start. A Donnarumma, Calabria, Tomori, Kjaer, Dalot back line is the likely line up as there is little other options available. Dalot is on loan from Manchester United and should be relishing the chance and Tomori has some familiarity with the Premier League being on loan from Chelsea.
Tonali is in the squad but could be rested for upcoming matches in favour of Meite. Meite did ok vs Verona. Perhaps Kessie needs the rest but the Ivorian has been the star and strong man of the team.
The biggest challenge remains up front as there are simply not many bodies available. There is talk of Saelemaekers, Diaz, Krunic and Leao as starters but Castillejo starting on the left and leaving Diaz on the bench is one other option for Pioli. Krunic was probably the star of the Verona match and if he can replicate the good play and the free kick goal he scored Milan stand a much better chance of winning this match up. A lot of Milan’s fate will rests with Leao too. The Portuguese has been poor and very poor at times and needs to get more involved and needs to find the space and execute.
This is the 11th time the two teams face each other in European competition and the teams have split the previous 10 matches with five wins each. The previous meetings feature memorable goals such as Kaka’s 2007 goal in Manchester in which he split the opposition’s defence in what is acknowledged as one of the best goals ever. As mentioned Manchester United miss several important players. Paul Pogba, Marcus Rashford, Edinson Cavani and Donny van de Beek are all likely out. Bruno Fernandes, one of the stars of the past year, is the danger man for the English version of the Red Devils.
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