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AC Milan VS Torino, hosts will get 3 points

ITA D1AC Milan VS Torino, hosts will get 3 points

Submit by tipster Catherine
Posted Sat, 09 Jan 2021 09:10:28 GMT        

Match Time:1/10/2021 03:45 Sunday  (GMT+8)

Italian Serie A --  AC Milan   VS   Torino

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Beset by a crippling injury and illness crisis, AC Milan aim to recover from the desperation of defeat to Scudetto rivals Juventus in the first of back-to-back meetings with improving Torino on Saturday.

Milan saw their 27-round Serie A unbeaten run finally ended in midweek and now welcome Turin's second side to San Siro, just as Marco Giampaolo's struggling outfit have seemingly turned a corner.

 

Match preview

After approaching a calendar year undefeated in Serie A, Milan's remarkable run was mercilessly shattered by old foes Juventus on Wednesday.

Stricken by both a series of injuries and a pre-game COVID-19 outbreak - which affected Rade Krunic and Ante Rebic - the Rossoneri encountered the Old Lady seriously short-handed in midfield and attack, with Davide Calabria asked to improvise in midfield.

The gap between both sides' respective squad depth became glaringly apparent during Juve's 2-1 victory, as each club's second-half substitutions contrasted significantly.

Defending champions Juventus could introduce match-winning combination Weston McKennie and Dejan Kulusevski from the bench - plus big-money buys Arthur and Federico Bernardeschi - while Milan called upon rookie defender Pierre Kalulu and primavera graduates Daniel Maldini and Lorenzo Colombo.

Fortunately for the Diavolo, as city rivals Inter contrived to lose 2-1 against Sampdoria, Stefano Pioli's men remain top of the pile - for now - but the chasing pack are starting to close in.

Now, within the next few days, they take on Torino in both league and cup - with a pair of back-to-back meetings taking place at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza.

Milan are unbeaten in their last 24 Serie A home games against the Granata - winning 16 and keeping 17 clean sheets in the process - and will expect to get the better of one of their least successful former coaches, Marco Giampaolo, not once but twice.

A late equaliser from Brazilian defender Bremer - apparently a transfer window target for several bigger clubs across Europe - gave Torino a merited 1-1 draw with Verona in midweek.

Head coach Giampaolo reverted to using Sasa Lukic as a 'number 10' behind the front pair on Wednesday, with his team managing 17 attempts - though only two were ultimately on target - against a notoriously resilient visiting side.

In their last four games, the Granata have earned a respectable six points thanks to draws against Roma, Bologna and Napoli and a rare victory against Parma.

All of which leaves Giampaolo's men in 17th place with a meagre tally of twelve points, so they can not afford many missteps in the coming weeks given their close proximity to the relegation zone.

To continue their revival, Torino must improve in defence, as they have conceded 33 goals so far - only Crotone and Cagliari have let in more. In fact, 20 of those goals were leaked in the last 30 minutes of games - six more than any other Serie A side have conceded in the final half-hour this term.

Such a sloppy finale against a vengeful Milan outfit - even one scarred by major absences - would surely result in another dismal defeat for a club that so struggles at San Siro.

 

AC Milan Serie A form: DDWWWL

Torino Serie A form: LLDDWD

 

Team News

Pioli will still be without the injured Matteo Gabbia, Ismael Bennacer and Alexis Saelemaekers, while Krunic and Rebic are out due to COVID-19 infection.

Though nearing a return soon, Zlatan Ibrahimovic is still struggling with the muscle injury that has kept him out since mid-December, before which he had spells out with both illness and injury.

Alongside the dependable Franck Kessie in midfield, Sandro Tonali is back from a costly suspension which caused him to miss the crucial Juventus clash. Calabria can therefore return to right-back, with Diogo Dalot dropping to the bench.

Brahim Diaz could be preferred to Jens Petter Hauge in support of Rafael Leao up front, having made an impact from the bench in midweek.

Torino boss Giampaolo has a fully-fit squad, with midfielder Daniele Baselli now back from long-term injury.

In a familiar 3-5-2 formation, former Milan man Ricardo Rodriguez starts at wing-back, with Wilfried Singo on the opposite flank.

Serbian schemer Lukic could be replaced by Soualiho Meite in midfield, with the tireless Andrea Belotti - who regularly finds the net at San Siro - and Simone Verdi starting up front.

 

AC Milan possible starting lineup:

Donnarumma; Calabria, Kjaer, Romagnoli, Hernandez; Kessie, Tonali; Castillejo, Calhanoglu, Diaz; Leao

Torino possible starting lineup:

Sirigu; Izzo, Lyanco, Bremer; Singo, Lukic, Rincon, Linetty, Rodriguez; Verdi, Belotti

 

AC Milan 2-1 Torino

 

AC Milan VS Torino, hosts will get 3 points

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