Tatarusanu; Kalulu, Thiaw, Tomori, Theo Hernandez; Tonali, Bennacer; Brahim, Krunic, Leao; Giroud were the starters.
Game got off to an excellent start when Leao took on the ball from Giroud – from a Tomori pass – and beat Pietro Terracciano in the far corner with his right foot. Riccardo Saponara threatened to equalize soon after but his shot hit the post.
The game was uneventful until another poor defensive display had the visitors equalize, none of the Milan players defended the ball well and Tatarusanu while not faultless had to deal with a deflecting ball. Milan’s next best chance came just before half time when Diaz scrambled with the ball but was unable to get the ball into the next. It was also not the first instance where refereeing was head scratching.
The 1-1 half time score was one reflection of the lack of intensity and overall poor structure and display.
Milan came closes to taking the lead with Diaz freeing Kalulu on the right. The latter’s cross was almost diverted in by Giroud. Moments later Leao shot just wide from a Theo pass. Dest and Origi came on for Thiaw and Diaz.
Tomori could have given away a penalty on the hour mark, his tackle was somewhat questionable and VAR deemed it legal. The performance was lackluster with most attempts to enter Fiorentina’s box wasted by a wrong pass, poor cross or overall bad decision making. An attempted Giroud bicycle kick from a Leao cross was one example of the ball going awry when given a chance. Vranckx came on for the ineffective and invisible Krunic with 15 minutes to go. Leao’s next attempt was half blocked by Giroud in the box in a continuation of the theme of the game. Then Leao shot way high when almost free on goal when Fiorentina had seemingly decided to sit back for counters and take the tie. Rebic came on for Tonali for the final five minutes.
The drama was not over as a late goal arrived from a Vranckx cross. The goalkeeper came to collect the ball but hit the Milan player instead as the ball moved to the far side and it was diverted in with Origi on the doorstep, the goal was credited an Nikola Milenkovic own goal. Fiorentina protested but VAR, correctly, saw nothing.
It was a 2-1 win and three needed points in a game where Milan frustrated and was poor.