Milan travel to Lecce on Monday evening hoping to bounce back from narrowly crashing out of the Coppa Italia to Juventus last time out, and against their relegation-threatened opposition should be worthy of backing.
Serie A 2019/2020
Date: Monday June, 22
Venue: Stadio Comunale Via del Mare
Lecce are running the risk of a swift
return to the second tier at this stage of the season, and the heavy 7-2 defeat against Atalanta before the break mirrored I Giallorossi’s campaign so far. Roma put four past them just before the trashing by Atlanta, thus bringing their goals conceded in the league to an astonishing 56 — the most of any team in the division by some distance.
Fabio Liverani’s side are capable of springing surprises, as they showed in February when they picked up three victories on the bounce versus Torino, Napoli and SPAL.
Milan on their part, held defending champions Juventus to a goalless stalemate in the second leg of their Coppa Italia semi final last time out, but Juve’s away goal from the 1-1 first leg result meant that the Rossoneri’s quest for a first cup triumph since 2003 will go on a little while longer.
With a top-six finish for the season still in view, they will need to recover quickly from that setback and chase their cause, as they are currently just three points off Napoli, who occupy the final Europa League spot.
Giulio Donati is suspended following his outburst in the defeat to Atalanta.
Diego Farias, Filippo Falco and Khouma Babacar are all set to miss out of the welcome of Milan through injuries.
Stefano Pioli will make do without the services of Leo Duarte, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Rade Krunic here.
Head to Head
In 25 competitive meetings between these two sides, Milan have 13 victories to their name, while sharing spoils with their rivals on ten occasions. Lecce have ever managed just two wins over Milan, the last coming in April 2006.
Lecce last five competitive games: WWWLL
Milan last five competitive games: DLWDL
Milan should be able to secure a victory to compensate for their valiant efforts against Juventus last time, and their dominance over Lecce in this fixture puts them in good stead. They shared spoils in this game’s reverse fixture this season, Lecce’s Marco Calderoni denying them with a late goal but I think with the likes of Theo Hernandez and Sami Castillejo returning to the side for I Rossoneri, it should give them some extra bite to go on and secure a win here. It is priced 3/5 for odds.
Hakan Calhanoglu is 9/4 to score anytime and takes an appeal on the goal-scorers market. The attacking midfielder was on song in the 2-2 draw with Lecce in Milan, and he could be able to get in among the goals yet.