AC Milan's Quest for Victory at Udinese: A Critical Serie A Showdown
As AC Milan eyes a strategic win at Udinese to sustain their title chase, the encounter emerges as a crucial juncture for both teams in Serie A's competitive landscape.
AC Milan, still chasing the top two in Serie A, gears up for a pivotal match against Udinese this Saturday, aiming to tighten their hold on third place. Their recent victory over Roma has boosted their confidence, while Udinese struggles near the relegation zone, gaining only one point in 2024.
Milan's resilience after a Coppa Italia exit was evident in their 3-1 victory over Roma, a win that catalyzed Jose Mourinho's exit from the Roman club. Despite uncertainties surrounding Stefano Pioli's future, Milan's recent performances, including goals from Adli, Giroud, and Hernandez, have been commendable.
With Milan out of the Champions League and continuing a two-decade Coppa Italia drought, they are nine points behind leaders Inter Milan. However, their recent Serie A form has been impressive, averaging over two points per match in the last eight fixtures.
Udinese, however, presents a unique challenge for Milan. Despite Milan's strong performance against teams like PSG and Newcastle United, their last league defeat at home was against Udinese. Now, as they aim for a win in Udine, a location where they haven't secured a league victory in over three years, the stakes are high.
Udinese, having defeated Milan earlier this season, aims for a rare consecutive win streak against them. Their recent draw against Fiorentina, after losing a lead, typifies their season's struggles.
Milan's defensive concerns persist with the absence of Thiaw, Tomori, and Kalulu due to injuries. However, the return of Sportiello and possibly Florenzi brings some relief. With Giroud leading the attack, Milan remains a formidable opponent.
For Udinese, the absence of key players like Deulofeu adds to their challenges. However, the potential return of midfielder Payero could bolster their lineup, which is likely to feature Lucca as the key striker.
Udinese could start with Okoye; Ferreira, Perez, Kristensen; Ebosele, Payero, Walace, Lovric, Kamara; Pereyra; Lucca. Milan's possible lineup includes Maignan; Calabria, Kjaer, Gabbia, Hernandez; Reijnders, Adli; Pulisic, Loftus-Cheek, Leao; Giroud.