Sports Mole previews Wednesday’s Coppa Italia clash between AC Milan and Lazio, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
After their derby day success on Saturday, AC Milan will now turn their attention to the Coppa Italia when they face Lazio in the quarter-finals on Wednesday.
The hosts are aiming to reach the last four for the third time in four seasons, while Lazio are bidding to move into the semi-finals for the first time since the 2018-19 campaign, when they went all the way to lift the trophy.
The mood in the AC Milan camp will be at a significant high after they blew the Serie A title race wide open with a 2-1 victory over their bitter rivals Inter Milan at the weekend.
For a large part of Saturday’s contest, it seemed as though the Rossoneri would finish on the losing side after Ivan Perisic had given Inter the lead with a neat finish into the bottom corner.
With just 15 minutes left to play, Stefano Pioli‘s side restored parity when Brahim Diaz‘s deflected effort fell to Olivier Giroud to poke home and the Frenchman was celebrating once again just moments later as he showed great skill to spin quickly in the box before guiding the ball beyond Samir Handanovic.
Wednesday’s hosts will now put their title challenge on hold as they turn their attention to a Coppa Italia quarter-final, with AC Milan dreaming of winning Italy’s domestic cup competition for the first time since 2003.
The Rossoneri required extra time to beat Genoa in the previous round and after winning twice in regular time in their previous 10 home games in all competitions, Pioli will know his side face a tough test on Wednesday.
After winning their seventh Coppa Italia title in 2019, Lazio have been eliminated at the quarter-final stage in the last two seasons.
In the previous round of this season’s competition, the Biancocelesti were taken to extra time by Udinese, where they booked their place in the last eight thanks to Ciro Immobile‘s delightful lob in the 106th minute.
The visitors will enter the midweek contest full of confidence after a 3-0 away win over Fiorentina saw Maurizio Sarri‘s side extend their unbeaten run to four games in all competitions.
After a goalless first half at the Stadio Artemio Franchi, Lazio hit the front in the 52nd minute courtesy of Sergej Milinkovic-Savic‘s effort before Immobile slotted home to double the Biancocelesti’s advantage, and a comprehensive win was complete when the unfortunate Cristiano Biraghi put the ball into his own net.
Having scored at least two goals in seven of their last 10 away games in all competitions, Lazio will believe that they have the quality to trouble the Rossoneri defence at the San Siro on Wednesday.
AC Milan Coppa Italia form:
AC Milan form (all competitions):
Lazio Coppa Italia form:
Lazio form (all competitions):
Despite receiving a red card in the derby, Theo Hernandez will be available for the cup game, although he will miss the Rossoneri’s Serie A encounter with Sampdoria on Sunday.
Fikayo Tomori returned to the AC Milan bench on Saturday following his recovery from injury and after being an unused substitute at the weekend, Pioli may be tempted to bring the England international into the backline for the Coppa Italia fixture.
After impressing as a second-half substitute against Inter, Diaz could also come into the starting lineup for Wednesday’s contest.
As for Lazio, they are unable to call upon the services of Francesco Acerbi and Jean-Daniel Akpa Akpro, who remain unavailable through injury.
Pedro came into the starting XI on Saturday following his injury return, and the 34-year-old is expected to keep his place in the side for Wednesday’s cup fixture.
Immobile has failed to score in just one of Lazio’s last six matches in all competitions, and the Italy international will look to continue his fine run of form, when he leads the line at the San Siro.
AC Milan possible starting lineup:
Maignan; Calabria, Kalulu, Tomori, Hernandez; Tonali, Bennacer, Diaz; Messias, Leao, Giroud
Lazio possible starting lineup:
Strakosha; Hysaj, Felipe, Patric, Marusic; Milinkovic-Savic, Cataldi, Alberto; Pedro, Zaccagni, Immobile
We say: AC Milan 2-1 Lazio
AC Milan have already beaten Lazio at the San Siro this season after winning 2-0 in Serie A back in September, and following their victory in the Milan derby on Saturday, the hosts will be oozing with confidence, and we think that they will use to that to their advantage to edge out the visitors on Wednesday.
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