Antonio Donnarumma will be given the chance tonight, while Cristian Zapata returns after a long spell on the bench.
Milan have a 3-0 lead on Ludogorets from last week’s first leg away from home, and virtually all the bookies have odds on Milan to go through. And while Gattuso warned that the Diavolo haven’t qualified yet, he’s going to do some rotation.
Suso hasn’t been called-up and Giacomo Bonaventura, Hakan Çalhanoğlu, Lucas Biglia and Leonardo Bonucci are not expected to start, and it also seems that starting keeper Gianluigi Donnarumma will get a chance to catch his breath.
According to Sky Italia and La Gazzetta dello Sport, Gattuso has decided to play with Antonio Donnarumma in goal, giving him his second-ever Milan appearance, the first was of course against Inter in the Coppa Italia on December 27.
Antonio had a great showing in the Derby della Madonnina two months ago and he will hope to get another clean sheet tonight.
Donnarumma’s center backs will be Alessio Romagnoli and Cristian Zapata. It will in fact be Zapata’s first appearance since featuring in the 2-0 defeat away from home to Rijeka on the 7th of December, as he has been pushed down the pecking order this season with the arrivals of captain Leonardo Bonucci and Mateo Musacchio, who received compliments from Gattuso after the match against Sampdoria, but has calf problems and is not part of the squad for tonight’s game.
In midfield, Riccardo Montolivo will replace the Argentine Biglia as the regista and he will be flanked by Franck Kessié, who did not play against Sampdoria on Sunday due to suspension, and Manuel Locatelli, who’s been getting his minutes as of late in the role of the mezz’ala (side-midfielder).
In attack, there was a report from Sky yesterday that Gattuso was considering playing Primavera’s Riccardo Forte and Tiago Dias, but the two were not even called-up and Rino will be using first-team members only: Fabio Borini, André Silva & Patrick Cutrone will try to beat Ludogorets keeper Broun.
This match is another chance for Silva to prove his worth as he is yet to score a goal in Serie A, but has 6 goals to his name in the Europa League. The Portuguese will look to continue from where he stopped against Sampdoria, as the 22-year-old forward had a good showing in the last 20 minutes of the match in the weekend, replacing Cutrone who’ll be occupying the ‘Mario Mandžukić’ role.
Probable XI: Antonio Donnarumma; Ignazio Abate, Cristian Zapata, Alessio Romagnoli, Ricardo Rodriguez; Franck Kessié, Riccardo Montolivo, Manuel Locatelli; Fabio Borini, André Silva, Patrick Cutrone.