The Rossoneri will get their season underway in the San Siro Sunday, August, 21st against Siniša Mihajlović’s Torino.
When: August 21st, 2016, 12:00 p.m. (ET), 5:00 p.m. (BST)
Where: San Siro: Milan, Italy
Milan Probable XI (4-3-3): Donnarumma, De Sciglio, Romagnoli, Paletta, Abate, Bonaventura, Montolivo, Bertolacci, Niang, Bacca Suso
Torino Probable XI (4-3-3): Padelli, Molinaro, Moretti, Rossettini, De Silvestri, Obi, Vives, Acquah, Ljajic, Belotti, Boyé
Vincenzo Montella will look to impress on his debut to the campaign as former Milan coach, Mihajlovic will line up on the opposing touchline in his return to the Giuseppe Meazza. The red and black’s new manager has worked to install tactical structure revolving around possession and building attacks from the back line. However, questions still remain about who will start with Romagonli at the heart of the defense. Montella has seemed to taken a liking to Gabriel Paletta, who provides a ruggedness to Romagnoli's fine-tuned poise in the back. On the other hand, Milan acquired Paraguayan defender Gustavo Gómez from Lanús for €7 million, who played well in his preseason debut for his new club, completing passes while providing structure to the defense.
Milan had an up and down preseason with the late purchase of the club by a Chinese consortium led by established businessman Han Li, which due to the late deal did not allow for much activity in the transfer window and Montella’s men also saw mixed results on the score sheets. However, in these games, Montella's side has shown promise with its free flowing attack and with the fresh arrival of Bacca who hasn't played much due to a few knocks as well as transfer speculation from West Ham, Milan have the ability to give the Milanisti an opening win and inspire hope for a finish that will give them European competition, something that’s eluded the Rossoneri for the past few years.
Montella will most likely start in a 4-3-3 formation that will change throughout the game showing traits of 4-4-2 and even at times a 3-5-2 with the use of De Sicglio and Abate as wing backs. Montolivo is set to captain his team at the heart of the midfield and look to make up for a poor 2014/2015 campaign under his new boss. Bertolacci will also having something to prove as he comes off a disappointing maiden campaign in the red ans black stripes, he has however shown some improved displays in the preseason. Bonaventura will most likely take up his role on the left side of the midfield and be the creative spark that he was last season. Bacca, who was a scoring machine in his first Serie A season will look to garner space created by Niang and Suso and put his chances away in the clinical fashion he’s known for.
The former Milan manager Sinisa Mihajlovic will get a crack at his old team in his Serie A debut with Torino. Il Toro have enjoyed success in the preseason, winning four games (one in penalties) and playing to a goalless draw against RB Liepzig. The Serbian tactician has implemented his style of running the play through a field general midfielder and using the flanks to his advantage, with impressive displays from the new attacking midfielder Adem Ljajić. Mihalovic will most likely use a 4-3-3 formation, and without the assuredness and tenacity of center back Kamil Glik, who was purchased by Monaco this summer for €15 million, he will look to partner veteran center back Emiliano Moretti with new signing Luca Rossettini and try to mitigate the potent Rossoneri attack. Up front Ljajic and Boyé will look to link up with young center forward Andrea Belotti who saw a fine start to his Torino career, netting 11 times in 31 games with Il Toro.
Predicted Scoreline: AC Milan 2, Torino 1