Two wins in as many games, four goals scored and none conceded. These are the numbers from Stefano Pioli's AC Milan side in the 2020/21 Serie A season. After the 2-0 home win against Bologna, the Rossoneri won 2-0 away from home against Crotone. The same result and the same performance: solid, precise, ordered and clinical. Six days ago, Zlatan Ibrahimović was the central figure. Today though, it was Kessie and Brahim Díaz. Both players were excellent and displayed a lot of quality. Pioli is sure to be pleased about a number of things, starting with the team's personality and their ability to read the game. The Rossoneri were able to score either side of half time. The attack functioned well and the defence was impenetrable, who kept a second consecutive clean sheet in Serie A. The only downside to the trip to Crotone was the injury to Ante Rebić, who went off at the beginning of the second half. This AC Milan team continue their good run or results and are sure to be hungry for more good performances and points in an extraordinary 2020. Now though, attentions turn to Thursday's (21:00 CEST) vital game in the Europa League playoffs and Rio Ave, where a place in the group stage is at stake.
TAKE A LOOK: THE GALLERY FROM AC MILAN V CROTONE
The Rossoneri started strongly and forced their first chance within fifteen minutes as two new boys combined well: Tonali and Díaz. Sandrofed Brahim, whose first-time effort was turned behind by Cordaz, the Crotone goalkeeper. AC Milan looked dangerous and were positive in their approach at the Stadio Enzo Scida. In the 20th minute, Kjær met the corner and headed it into the ground, but it bounced up and struck the crossbar. The rhythm of the game was largely affected by a strong breeze, which needed an explosive moment for its opening goal. On the stroke of half time, Rebić was brought down in the penalty area and, after a lengthy VAR check, a penalty was awarded to AC Milan. Kessie stepped up and stroked it home. A brilliant penalty and a 1-0 lead at half time. The goal changed the game completely and, after the break, the Rossoneri began to find a lot of space. Not long into the second half, Çalhanoğlu and Saelemaekers combined to feed Díaz, who pounced on the ball and turned it home. But there was no time to celebrate: Pioli was forced to bring Rebić off as he came off worse in a heavy collision. Colombo replaced him. Crotone tried to force a goal, but never really threatened the Rossoneri defence. AC Milan almost grabbed a third through Krunić, whose shot struck the crossbar. This was the last real piece of action in the game and it ended 2-0.
CROTONE 0-2 AC MILAN
CROTONE (3-5-2): Cordaz; Magallan, Marrone, Golemić; Pedro Pereira (66' Reca), Messias, Cigarini, Zanellato (46' Eduardo), Molina (83' Rispoli); Simy, Drăguș (71' Vulić). A disp. Festa, Spolli, Mustacchio, Crociata, Gomelt, Mazzotta, Kargbo, Yakubiv. All. Stroppa.
AC MILAN (4-2-3-1): G.Donnarumma, Calabria, Kjær, Gabbia, Hernández; Tonali (63' Bennacer), Kessie, Díaz (83' Leão), Çalhanoğlu (83ì Krunić), Saelemaekers (58' Castillejo), Rebić (57' Colombo). A disp. A.Donnarumma, Tătărușanu, Kalulu, Laxalt, Paquetá, Maldini. All.: Pioli.
Referee: Luca Pairetto di Nichelino.
Goals: 47' Kessie (M), 52' Díaz (M) .
Booked: 47' Marrone (C), 56' Pioli (M), 63' Gabbia (M), 78' Hernández (M), 93' Leão (M).
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