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AC Milan vs Manchester United: Key Battles and Predictions

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Milan need to use their chances well and to ensure they don’t concede early.

AC Milan v SSC Napoli - Serie A Photo by Jonathan Moscrop/Getty Images

AC Milan will be looking for a huge win to turn around their recent misfortunes in 2021 against Manchester United in the Europa League at the San Siro. Here are some key battles to watch out for in the game:

Key Battles

Central attacking midfielder vs Central defensive midfielder

Hakan Calhanoglu vs Nemanja Matic

Calhanoglu will be the main man to watch from Milan’s perspective as he looks to exploit the gaps in the defence we saw in the previous game. He will need to be able to dodge Matic who has been a wall to get passes behind Bailly and Maguire for the strikers. This creativity will be critical to ensure Milan do not need a last minute set piece to score. Matic has also been the engine of the United side and if Hakan can keep him busy we could better use the wings.

Central defensive midfielder vs Central attacking midfielder

Franck Kessie vs Bruno Fernandes

Just as last week, I believe Kessie and Fernandes will be a key match up. Last time, Kessie ran the game and had a wrongly disallowed goal. Fernandes has a sublime assist for United’s goal. This time around these two will continue to dictate the plays for their respective sides and who wins the personal battle between them will surely take the W.

Striker vs Centre back

Marcus Rashford vs Fikayo Tomori

Rashford is back and Milan should be worried. His pace and his shot are a recipe for disaster but on the flip side, we have a quick and aggressive Tomori who is more than capable of shutting him down. This should be his sole responsibility as the youngster can draw fouls in the box and can force a goal from any dangerous position. Milan have the away goal advantage and need to keep it for as long as possible.

Predictions

Calhanoglu Winner

Kessie Winner

Tomori Winner