After comfortably beating Bologna in the opening fixture of Serie A this season, AC Milan are set to welcome Torino at the San Siro on Saturday evening.
Having sold Sandro Tonali to Newcastle United in a £60m deal this summer, the Rossoneri have invested the money wisely and signed several new players.
Christian Pulisic, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Tijjani Reijnders, Yunus Musah, Noah Okafor, Samuel Chukwueze, Luka Romero and Marco Pellegrino have been bought by Stefano Pioli’s side.
A few new signings immediately made an impact on the opening fixture as Reijnders assisted the opener before Pulisic scored the second from distance.
Loftus-Cheek was also impressive against Thiago Motta’s side on Monday and he seems to be an excellent acquisition for Pioli’s side at first glance.
After investing heavily to strengthen their squad this summer, Milan are now considered to be one of the favourite to win the Scudetto this term. So, they will be looking to come away with all three points against the Toro this weekend to keep the winning run going.
After reaching the semifinal of the Champions League last term, Milan will be looking to go deep into that competition once again and challenge for the league title this term.
In order to achieve that, adding depth to the squad is extremely essential and they have done exactly that this summer. Milan have signed Loftus-Cheek and Pulisic but they have struggled with their injury issues over the last few years so Chukwueze and Musah have been purchased to manage the ex-Chelsea stars’ minutes and keep the duo fresh throughout the campaign.
Okafor will support the ageing Giroud so they have depth in their squad all around the pitch. The Rossoneri hierarchy have handed Pioli the necessary resources to fight on all fronts and the fans will be hoping that the 57-year-old will be able to achieve success this season.
Every player came unscathed from the previous encounter so Pioli will have a full squad to choose from this weekend. Musah remained sidelined in the opening fixture due to suspension but he is set to return and is expected to make his debut against Torino.
But, it is highly unlikely that Pioli will be making any changes to his starting eleven from the last game so the USA international will have to settle for a place on the bench in this encounter.
However, the sad news is Ismael Bennacer is set to remain unavailable for this encounter due to an injury problem. But, Milan currently have enough firepower in the middle of the park so the Algerian’s absence shouldn’t make any impact on the Rossonerri’s result this weekend.
As for Torino, they are set to start a full-strength starting eleven as they don’t have any injury or suspension issues in their squad at the moment.
Players to keep an eye on
Milan are currently filled with attacking talent following a successful summer window. Rafael Leao has been the mainstay of the Rossonerri’s success over the last few years but Pulisic’s addition will now ease the pressure off the Portuguese’s shoulders.
Theo Hernandez is a devastating fullback and on his day, he can single-handedly help his team win any games. So, Torino will have to keep him quiet if they want to come away with anything from this encounter.
Reijnders and Loftus-Cheek displayed excellent performance in the previous game and they will have the responsibility of dictating the game from the middle of the park.
Above all, Torino have to keep a close eye on Oliver Giroud as the Frenchman has established himself as an integral part of Pioli’s system after joining the club a couple of years ago.
Samuel Chukwueze will be introduced in the second half and he is expected to cause all sorts of problems for Juric’s side with his pace and trickery. Okafor is also expected to come on after the interval and he has the ability to become a nuisance for Torino’s defence. So, this suggests Milan have qualities all around the pitch and it will be difficult for Torino to contain the host.
Meanwhile, as for Torino, Schuurs is an excellent player and Juric will be heavily reliant on him to keep the clean-sheet, while responsibility will be on former West Ham United star Nicola Vlasic to create chances for Antonio Sanabria to score goals.
Possible formation and line-up
Pioli used a 4-2-3-1 formation until last season but following the departure of Brahim Diaz and Charles De Ketelaere, Milan are currently without a natural number 10.
So, Pioli has decided to change his formation and opted to go with the 4-3-3 in the opening fixture against Bologna and it’s expected to be the same this Saturday.
Milan’s potential starting eleven
Mike Maignan; Davide Calabria, Malick Thiew, Fikayo Tomori, Hernandez; Reijnders, Rade Krunic, Loftus-Cheek; Leao, Giroud, Pulisic
Ivan Juric likes to deploy a three-back system with a lone striker leading the line. Wing-backs will have the responsibility of stretching the opposition defensive lines and two inverted wingers will look to find spaces between the lines and create chances for the striker.
Torino’s possible starting eleven
Vanja Milinkovic-Savic; Schuurs, Alessandro Buongiorno, Ricardo Rodríguez; Raoul Bellanova, Samuele Ricci, Ivan Ilic, Mergim Vojvoda, Vlasic, Yan Karamoah; Sanabria
How to watch
Supporters can still buy AC Milan tickets for the same but for those who can’t attend the match in person, you can still follow all the action from the comfort of your own home. The match will begin at 7.45p.m UK time on Saturday and it will be telecasted live on TNT Sports in the UK. The online live streaming will be on TNT Sports app and their website.
Milan have enjoyed great success against Torino at home in Serie A over the last few decades as the Toro haven’t been able to beat the Rossoneri at San Siro since 1985. Their recent victory at this historic stadium came against Milan in Coppa Italia last season.
Therefore, Torino will be desperate to change their league fortune at San Siro this weekend so Milan will have to be careful and will need to be at their very best to come away with all three points from this encounter.
Torino enjoyed a promising campaign under Juric’s guidance last term, finishing 10th in the league. So it won’t be an easy fixture for Milan. But, the Rossoneri should come away with all three points from this game as they are expected to challenge for the league title this season and winning these types of matches will boost their confidence to go all the way.
So, having started the campaign on a higher note, Milan shouldn’t drop any points this weekend and should continue their winning run. It is going to be interesting to see whether Milan can display consistency and win back-to-back games. Milan 3-1 Torino
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