Three goals, three different goalscorers and three points on the board. That's a brief but apt summary of our game against Dinamo Zagreb. It ended 3-1 at San Siro, which got to witness a win in the Champions League for the first time in a long time. The key figures of the evening were Giroud, who opened the scoring from the spot, Saelemaekers with the Rossoneri's second and Pobega, who came on in the 67th minute and, ten minutes later, scored his first goal for AC Milan. Oršić had made it 2-1 but the hosts reacted brilliantly to shut down any further attempts from the Croatian side. It's a big win, both given the performance and the importance.
Dinamo, who beat Chelsea on matchday 1, were full of confidence and played with their usual defensive style, which worked for almost an entire half of football. Pioli's side created a lot, were patient and got their goal just before the break. These are clear signs that the group is maturing and growing in confidence in the Champions League now too. However, we must shift focus straight back to domestic football as we take on Napoli at San Siro at 20:45 CEST on Sunday - our last game before the break. Keep it up, lads!
CHECK OUT THE GALLERY FROM AC MILAN v DINAMO ZAGREB
Dinamo lined up at San Siro in a tight 4-5-1 to try and nullify the Rossoneri’s attack. But early on it was the home side who created several good chances to score. The first came after six minutes to Tonali but his header was too high, after a cross from Alexis. On nine minutes, Giroud created an opening for himself but his left-foot shot from 18 yards went just over the bar. The main chance fell to Leão after 20 minutes who ran down on goal from his own half but was well-stopped at the moment of shooting, from just a few yards out. On the half-hour mark, Dinamo had their first opportunities with Moharrami working Maignan at the near post, and Oršić shooting wide. At the end of the half, the breakthrough came: Šutalo brought down Leão in the box for a clear penalty, and Giroud made no mistake from the spot to make it 1-0 to AC Milan. The first half ended soon after.
After the break, AC Milan came out like a house on fire and doubled their lead through Saelemaekers, after not even two minutes of play. Leão ran down the wing and his cross was placed perfectly onto the number 56’s head, who sweetly found the net, continuing his fine Champions League form. But Dinamo reduced the deficit immediately through Oršić, who after 56 minutes took advantage of Petković’s nice feed through to beat Maignan. Pioli took off Tonali and Giroud, replacing them with Pobega and De Ketelaere, with the game taking a lull period as the Rossoneri controlled possession and Dinamo patiently waiting for an opening. A chance did come but it was for us after 77 minutes: Theo and Pobega combined quickly and Tomasso’s left-footed strike flew high into net for 3-1! The squad managed the game from there on in and without any further incident secured the win.
AC MILAN 3-1 DINAMO ZAGREB
AC MILAN (4-2-3-1): Maignan; Calabria, Kalulu, Tomori, Hernández; Bennacer (78' Krunić), Tonali (67' Pobega); Saelemaekers (78' Dest), Díaz (78' Messias), Leão; Giroud (68' De Ketelaere). Subs.: Jungdal, Mirante; Ballo-Touré, Gabbia, Kjær. Coach: Pioli.
DINAMO ZAGREB (4-5-1): Livaković; Ristovski (78' Drmić), Šutalo, Perić, Ljubičić; Moharrami (63' Špikić), Ivanušec, Mišić, Ademi, Oršić (84' Marin); Petković (84' Baturina). Subs.: Zagorac; Dilaver, Lauritsen, Štefulj, Théophile-Catherine; Bočkaj, Bulat; Emreli. Coach: Čačić.
Referee: Jesús Gil Manzano (Spain).
Goal: 45' pen. Giroud (M), 47' Saelemaekers (M), 56' Oršić (D), 77' Pobega (M).
Booked: 51' Pioli (M), 75' Oršić (D), 90' Marin (D).
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