How Milan could line up vs Sassuolo: Important decision for Pioli in tough test for Rossoneri

Pioli AC Milan

Milan will look to extend their impressive form in midweek as we head to Sassuolo for what promises to be a difficult encounter as we continue to battle for Europa League qualification.

Since the restart, we’ve won six and drawn two while scoring 25 goals and conceding nine. That great run has allowed us to cut the gap to fifth place to just two points, and so we can ill-afford to drop points now after working so hard to get into this position.

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It will be far from easy to keep that good form going though, with Sassuolo earning plenty of plaudits and rightly so for their impressive campaign thus far, as they’re just eight points behind us.

With Atalanta ahead on Friday night, Stefano Pioli has an important decision ahead in terms of what line-up he puts out as he has done a great job of rotating and resting key players in recent weeks, but he has to keep getting that balance right to ensure we sustain our push in the closing stages of the season.

Pioli tipped to go with same XI

Given how the team has been performing from back to front, there is a strong argument in favour of not making any changes and keeping the winning formula in place.

From a solid backline which is giving us a foundation on which to go out and win games to our midfield duo of Ismael Bennacer and Franck Kessie who are proving to be hugely influential in both phases.

Not to mention the quality of our attacking players who have shown a clinical edge to kill games off,  it’s difficult to make a case for Pioli to make any changes to the side that saw off Bologna so emphatically last time out.

As per MilanNews, the expectation is that the Milan boss will go with the same XI, choosing consistency and building that winning mentality in this line-up rather than rotating too much.

Probable Milan XI (4-2-3-1): Donnarumma; Calabria, Kjaer, Romagnoli, Theo Hernandez; Kessie, Bennacer; Saelemaekers, Calhanoglu, Rebic; Ibrahimovic.

It’s added that perhaps the only doubt is at right-back, where Davide Calabria will hope to keep his place in the XI after an improved performance against Bologna, but Andrea Conti will undoubtedly be putting pressure on to replace him and get his spot back after two disappointing outings previously.

That’s the only change touted by La Gazzetta dello Sport below, and so it will be interesting to see if Pioli goes down this path or ultimately decides to make more changes to keep the squad fresh.

Given the quality of the opposition in our next two games, it’s hoped that everyone comes through unscathed and if our preferred starting XI is fit and ready to play, then perhaps the smart decision from Pioli would be to go with his first-choice line-up. That said, it’s still a complicated one as given it’s yet another short, three-day turnaround between games, much depends on how the players are holding up as the campaign reaches a dramatic conclusion.

 

Image courtesy of La Gazzetta dello Sport.