Having won the last two consecutive matches in Serie A, AC Milan will be looking to make it a hat trick of wins when they host Atalanta at the San Siro on Sunday at 19:45 GMT.
With Atalanta occupying 5th position on the table and currently 3 points behind 4th-placed AC Milan, Gian Piero Gasperini’s men will be looking for the three points they need to jump into the top four.
AC Milan will be looking to steady their form and performances as they bid to gain some consistency in their performances and results in the League to bolster their top-four hopes.
AC Milan’s Return to Form
After three consecutive defeats in Serie A, AC Milan’s title hopes were all but extinguished. The champions’ work was made all the harder by the consistency and brilliance of league leaders Napoli, who have opened up an 18-point lead over Milan.
Stefano Pioli and his charges have had to adjust their hopes this season by prioritizing finishing inside the top four in the league.
As a result, their clash against Atalanta n Sunday will be crucial in this context, especially because their opponents are just 3 points behind them on the table.
Atlanta’s Inconsistency Issues in Serie A
Atalanta’s hopes for the top four this season will rest on overcoming challenges posed by teams like AC Milan.
A win on Sunday will see them level on 44 points with fourth-placed AC Milan.
They will focus on a statement performance to signal their intentions of finishing inside the top four this season.
Stefano Pioli will be without defensive midfielder Ismael Bennacer; the 25-year-old enforcer is nursing an injury to his biceps femoris muscle. He has been out since January 30th, 2023. The player has missed 5 matches so far and is expected to be back fit by February 26th, 2023.
Milan will also miss the services of right-back Davide Calabria. The 26-year-old fullback is suffering from hip problems that have kept him out since February 16th, 2023. He has missed a solitary match so far. No return date has been issued by the club for his fitness.
Gian Piero Gasperini will not be able to select right-back Hans Hateboer. The experienced 29-year-old fullback has been nursing a cruciate ligament rupture since February 11th, 2023. He is expected to be back fit at the end of August 2023.
Center-forward Duvan Zapata is also missing from the squad and will likely miss the Sunday clash with AC Milan at the San Siro. Zapata has been sidelined with a hamstring injury since February 17th, 2023, and thus has missed 3 Serie A matches already.
C. Tatarusanu; F. Tomori, M. Thiaw, P. Kalulu; T. Hernandez, S. Tonali, R. Krunic, J. Messias; R. Leao, B. Diaz; D. Origi
J. Musso; R. Toloi, M. Demiral, B. Djimsiti; D. Zappacosta, Ederson, T. Koopmeiners, J. Maehle; J. Boga; R. Hojlund, A. Lookman
Stefano Pioli and his men will be looking to make it three consecutive wins in Serie A in the post-World Cup period as they look to step up their form in the second half of the season and solidify their top-four position.
With the gap to the top of the table standing at a massive 18 points, AC Milan will concentrate on the top-four race, especially against their direct rivals Atalanta, who are just3 points behind.
Milan will dominate the patch by controlling possession and setting the tempo of the clash through its midfield.
Atalanta will look to counter this by applying intensity; pressing and counter pressing to make sure Milan do not have comfortable possession. Closing down players and gaps will make this match a close contest at the San Siro.
AC Milan will win the match and take the three important points they need while Atalanta will receive a blow to their top-four chase.
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