AC Milan are back to winning ways on a particularly delicate night. The Rossoneri won 2-1 at the Olimpico thanks to goals from Kessie and Rebić, taking three precious points in the struggle at the top of the table – especially after two tough weeks. Rhythm, intensity, heart, cleverness and aggression; the team gave it their all on the pitch right from the outset, both going forward and at the back. It wasn’t easy for the Rossoneri to pick themselves up in the league and it wasn’t a given that it would happen in a game against a direct rival, who had been in fine form. But AC Milan did just that, with plenty of quality and quantity and a demonstration that they are willing to suffer without the ball. The Diavolo created plenty of chances – without taking them – in the first half-hour of the game. Kessie then opened the scoring from the penalty spot towards the end of the first half and, after Veretout’s equaliser just after the break, Ante restored AC Milan’s lead. There were plenty of positives, both on a collective and individual level, but, unfortunately, a couple of sour notes given the injuries to Ibra, Rebić e Çalhanoğlu, all of whom were forced off during the 90 minutes. Their fitness will be evaluated ahead of the midweek fixture on Wednesday evening against Udinese at San Siro (20:45 CET). In the meantime, let’s just enjoy this deserved victory.
CHECK OUT THE GALLERY FROM ROMA v AC MILAN
AC Milan started on the front foot. In the third minute, Tomori put the ball into the back of the net but it was ruled out for offside against Kjær. Two minutes later, Ibra stole the ball from Pau López but couldn't capitalise with the back-heel. The Rossoneri were well on top and, in the ninth minute, Ibra saw his goal chalked off for offside after Rebić squared it for the Swede. The Croat was in the thick of the action again; in the 17th minute, his effort from the edge of the box was blocked behind for a corner. AC Milan once more; Kjær's headed effort from Çalhanoğlu's corner rattled the crossbar. In the 28th minute, Roma caused AC Milan their first scare; Mancini flicked the header on to Mkhitaryan, who put the ball in the back of the net, but it was disallowed for a foul by the Giallorossi defender. The Rossoneri got back on the front foot though but, again, Pau López was there to thwart Rossoneri efforts, this time it was Rebić who forced a save from the Roma goalkeeper. One minute later, the Spanish shot-stopper made another save, this time to deny Saelemaekers. Roma found space on the counter and, in the 37th minute, Tonali recovered to block Pellegrini from close range. In the 38th minute, the Giallorossi pushed through Mkhitaryan, whose chipped effort over Gigio ended up wide of the post. Fazio then brought Calabria down in the box in the 42nd minute and the Rossoneri were awarded a penalty kick. Kessie stepped up to take the spot-kick and calm calm to give the Diavolo a deserved lead.
The second half began and Theo fired just wide. Then, the home side drew level. Spinazzola fed Veretout, whose effort nestled into the far corner. AC Milan didn't give up and regained their lead in the 58th minute; Saelemaekers found Rebić, who controlled the ball, turned and hit the ball across López and into the back of the net. In the 69th minute, Leão beat Karsdorp and Villar in the box but his shot was straight down the middle. Theo caused the defence more issues but his effort was blocked behind for a corner. At the other end of the pitch, Mkhitaryan fired just wide. In the 78th minute, Tomori again tested the reflexes of López, who kept the home side in the game and did so again moments later, deny Krunić's ambitious effort from midfield. AC Milan went through one last scare in the third minute of injury time; Gigio kept out Mkhitaryan's effort.
ROMA 1-2 AC MILAN
ROMA (3-4-2-1): Pau Lopez; Mancini, Cristante, Fazio (62' Peres); Karsdorp, Veretout, Villar (70' El Shaarawy), Spinazzola; Pellegrini, Mkhitaryan; B. Mayoral. Subs.: Fuzato, Mirante; Juan Jesus, Kumbulla; Diawara, Pastore; Pedro, Pérez. Coach: Fonseca.
AC MILAN (4-2-3-1): Donnarumma G.; Calabria, Kjær, Tomori, Hernández; Tonali (83' Meïte), Kessie; Saelemaekers (83' Castillejo), Çalhanoğlu (46' Díaz), Rebić (67' Krunić); Ibrahimović (56' Leão). Subs.: Donnarumma A., Tătăruşanu; Dalot, Gabbia, Kalulu, Romagnoli; Hauge. Coach: Pioli.
Referee: Guida from Torre Annunziata.
Goal: 43'pen Kessie (M), 50' Veretout (R), 58' Rebić (M).
Booked: 41' Fonseca (R), 42' Fazio (R), 46' Saelemaekers (M), 82' Mkhitaryan (R), 85' Calabria (M), 90' Pellegrini (R), 93' Castillejo (M).
Match KITS, clothing, accessories, gift ideas and much more: visit AC Milan online store!