The historic rivalry between AS Roma and AC Milan is the main reason why tonight's match won't be "normal", but it isn't the only one. Rudi Garcia and Siniša Mihajlović have both one last chance to prove they're the right men for their teams so they're supposed to go all-in with their tactical choices to earn the three points and save their job.
The rossoneri come from a tough loss to Bologna on Round 18 of the serie A, when they struggled more than usual in staying focused on the game and play together, as the huge scoring chance missed by Alessio Cerci proves. In effect, Milan played quite well for short periods on Wednesday, but they suddenly tuned off the lights and conceded easy opportunities to the Rossoblu who found the game winner just 10 minutes before the final whistle. For the first time in the season, Mihajlović couldn't manage the team and the substitutions well and seemed really worried about the situation, but Milan's chairman Silvio Berlusconi eventually decided to let him one more chance to redeem himself.
Roma's situation looks exactly the same as Milan's: their first game of 2016 didn't end in the way they expected, drawing 3-3 against a resilient Chievo Verona, and now their manager, Garcia, could lose his job in case of loss against the rossoneri. Their defensive line have been playing awfully since the beginning of the season and it's one of the main reasons why they're not among the top 3 teams in the league after 18 games, but also the lack of offensive support costed them a lot of points.
Things to remember & How to watch
Venue: Stadio Olimpico, Rome, Italy
Time: 8:45pm CET - 2.45pm ET
TV: Sky Sport 1 HD Italia, Sky Calcio 1, Sky Supercalcio (Italy), BT Sport Europe (U.K.), RAI International
Online: beIN Sports Connect (U.S. & Canada), Sky Go Italia (Italy), BT Sport Live Streaming (U.K.)
AC Milan (4-4-2): Christian Abbiati; Ignazio Abate, Cristián Zapata, Alessio Romagnoli, Mattia De Sciglio; Giacomo Bonaventura, Juraj Kucka, Andrea Bertolacci, Keisuke Honda; Luiz Adriano, Carlos Bacca
AS Roma (4-3-3): Wojciech Szczesny; Alessandro Florenzi, Kostas Manolas, Antonio Rüdiger, Lucas Digne; Miralem Pjanić, Radja Nainggolan, Daniele De Rossi; Umar Sadiq, Gervinho, Iago Falqué.
Notable facts: Kevin-Prince Boateng could make his return on the pitch for Milan after 2 years in Germany, but shouldn't start since he just recovered from flu-like symptoms. Also, Cerci was spotted at the casino after Wednesday loss to Bologna and wasn't called up by Mihajlović among the 23.
Roma 1 - 2 Milan
Both teams appeared to be in a bad period so it's quite unlikely to be an entertaining match tonight despite the huge offensive potential of both teams, but it will be surely a battle. Hopefully, the fans won't see a scoreless game.