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Climbing Mountain Milan

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Inter Milan vs AC Milan preview

AC Milan have a mountain to climb. After a listless performance in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League semifinal condemned them to a 0-2 defeat, the Rossoneri have it all to do in the second leg.

Inter blew away their archrivals in a performance that could have warranted even more goals. The absence of Rafael Leao hit Milan hard as they looked short of ideas in attack. In defence, Fikayo Tomori had a night to forget as Inter looked like scoring every time they came forward.

The one respite for Milan in the second leg is that the home and away terminology doesn’t matter here.

AC Milan and Inter share San Siro so the second leg will be played at the same stadium. Furthermore, the abolishing of away goals rule means AC Milan’s job is difficult, but not impossible. However, they would need to be at their very best and peay Inter aren’t as ruthless as they were in the first leg.

Here’s the Inter Milan vs AC Milan match preview, prediction, lineups and more as Milan seek to script one of Champions League’s historic upsets-

Inter Milan vs AC Milan lineups

Inter Milan predicted lineup

Inter are surging at the right time. Having won their last five in the league, accompanied by the statement win against Milan in UCL, Simone Inzaghi’s team is peaking.

Part of the reason why is their clearing injury slate. They are missing only Milan Skriniar, who is out with a back injury. Simone Inzaghi has a full quota of players to choose from otherwise.

The defensive axis of Andre Onana in goal, and Francesco Acerbi, Alessandro Bastoni, and Stefan de Vrij in front of him has picked up imperious form. Federico Dimarco and Denzel Dumfries will be responsible for providing attacking thrust from the wing-back position.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan scored in the first leg and he will hope to keep his form alive in midfield. He should be accompanied by the ever-present Nicolo Barella and set-piece specialist Hakan Calhanoglu.

Inzaghi will have a decision to make in attack. Edin Dzeko turned back the clock in the first leg with a masterful striking display. However, Chelsea loanee Romelu Lukaku has been heating up in recent weeks, marking his form with a brace against Sassuolo in Serie A on the weekend. Meanwhile, Lautaro Martinez has been one of Inzaghi’s most trusted players. It is a good problem to have, and whoever drops out of the team from these three will be motivated to make his mark off the bench.

Predicted Inter lineup: Onana, De Vrij, Bastoni, Acerbi, Dumfries, Dimarco, Mkhitaryan, Barella, Calhanoglu, Martinez, Dzeko

AC Milan predicted lineup

If Inter are surging, Milan are going the other way. There was an inquest at the weekend as Milan ultras argued with the players after a surprise 0-2 loss against Spezia. Ismael Bennacer’s injury and doubts over talisman Rafael Leao’s status add to Stefano Piolo’s headache.

Facing a two-goal deficit after the home fixture, Pioli will have no choice but to go out all guns blazing. AC Milan are five points adrift of UCL places in Serie A so they might not even be in this competition next year. Their best chance of booking a place next year is to win this year.

Mike Maignan’s selection in goal is undisputed. Fikayo Tomori might be given the opportunity to redeem himself at San Siro and the experienced Simon Kjaer should start alongside him. Pierre Kalulu is a dark horse for selection. Davide Calabria and Theo Hernandez round up the back four.

Sandro Tonali is the undisputed selection in midfield and in the absence of Rade Krunic and Bennacer, youngster Tommaso Pobega should get his chance to impress.

Alexis Saelemaekers, Brahim Diaz, and Ante Rebic should take their position behind Olivier Giroud in attack. Milan will need a better performance from the quartet in Rafael Leao’s absence.

Predicted AC Milan lineup: Maignan, Calabria, Tomori, Kjaer, Hernandez, Pobega, Tonali, Rebic, Diaz, Saelemaekers, Giroud

Inter Milan vs AC Milan prediction

It’s often said that the form book goes out the window in derby games. However, it is impossible to ignore that the trajectories of these two teams are trending in opposite directions.

Armed with a two-goal lead and with a UCL Final at the iconic Ataturk Olympic Stadium on the horizon, expect Inter to make this clash a battle of attrition as they tighten their grip on this game with a professional defensive performance.

FootTheBall predicts Inter Milan 1-1 AC Milan.

Vatsal Gupta
A die-hard Red Devil, who has straight up not had a good time since 2012. Lives on Korean dramas and books and can often be heard talking about armchair psychological stuff.

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