Messias, Díaz and Krunić expected to lead the line against Liverpool with Ibra, Kalulu favorite to start in defense

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Junior Messias and Brahim Díaz celebrating during Genoa-Milan at Stadio Luigi Ferraris on December 1, 2021. (Photo by Getty Images)

Rade Krunić will replace Rafael Leao in the starting XI alongside Brahim Díaz and Junior Messias in attack.

Tomorrow is Milan’s ‘do or die’ moment in the Champions League, as by the end of the night, they can find themselves in the competition’s Round of 16, or in the Europa League, or out of Europe.

To make it to the next stage, they must beat Liverpool, and hope for a good result in the Porto-Atlético Madrid game (a draw or an Atlético win which is ‘smaller’ than their win against Liverpool).

Coach Stefano Pioli is dealing with many injuries, and will be without Alessandro Plizzari, Davide Calabria, Simon Kjær, Samu Castillejo, Ante Rebić, Olivier Giroud, Rafael Leão and Pietro Pellegri. As a result, Pioli will not be able to field his strongest XI and needs to make decisions.

As reported by Milannews.it, Pierre Kalulu is currently favorite to start over Alessandro Florenzi in the right-back role. Kalulu will play alongside Fikayo Tomori, Alessio Romagnoli and Theo Hernández, should the French left-back be 100% healthy as he was dealing with a cold today and did not train with the rest of the squad. In goal, there will be Mike Maignan, making his return in the UCL.

In midfield, Sandro Tonali and Franck Kessié will play together, as they often do, leaving Ismaël Bennacer on the bench. In attack, Junior Messias is preferred over Alexis Saelemaekers and should play with Brahim Díaz and Rade Krunić, who’ll replace the injured Leão. No surprises in attack, as Milan’s only option due to injuries for the striker role, is Zlatan Ibrahimović.

Probable XI (Milannews.it): Mike Maignan; Pierre Kalulu, Fikayo Tomori, Alessio Romagnoli, Theo Hernández; Sandro Tonali, Franck Kessié; Junior Messias, Brahim Díaz, Rade Krunić, Zlatan Ibrahimović.

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SJF

In fairness to the English teams they are always motivated, even in games like this.

We cant expect Liverpool to roll over. We need to play with 100% intensity and concentration right to the end.

Clearly we are missing many players, but Liverpool will be far from full strength. So let’s not make excuses.

Come on guys, we got this!

Forza Milan

Simonsays

Guys let’s be realistic. We will lose this game. We always lose against Premier league teams. When was the last time we beat a Premier league team. Let’s just see this as it is

SJF

That’s not the attitude we need.
Milan are a great club and need to play to win. Showing the commitment befitting a club like Milan.

Simonsays

Being optimistic won’t make a difference stats do.

We never beat Premier league teams. Cmon who are you or any of these guys kidding.

Tell you what if milan win which the absolutely will not come back to this comment

SJF

Well then your just a fair weather supporter!

They may not win but they have every chance to do so. So I will support my team

SJF

If you like stats, the last 3 times we played Liverpool finished
3-3 2005
1-2 2007
3-2 2021

So we are 7-7 with Liverpool

Caesar

To ad to this… Milan lost 3-2 to Man Utd in 2007 but trashed them 3-0 in the return leg at San Siro.

Simonsays

We are nor in 2007 any more. This generation we can’t hold a candle up to these teams. Even inter are better then us let alone the English teams

Kossy

This Simonsays is the greatest Milan fan of all time, please let everyone give him a laud long applause, thank you Simonsays for showing us how so attached you loved negativity and how much you believe your so beloved club milan will fail………TO INVEST THIS MUCH NEGATIVITY IN SOMETHING YOU BELIVE YOU LOVE SHOWS YOU NEED HELP, YOU AINT A FAN AND YOU NEED TO LEARN ACM/LIV HISTORY.

SOHEIL

If it was up to me, I would start with Tonali, Kessie, Bennacer at the same time. They won the midfield battle last time. It would be really hard for us to win it while “the invisible man” aka Krunic is starting over Bennacer.

SJF

It’s a fair point. Play the best players available at this stage.
Bennacer is a good dribbler too

Caesar

Sometimes Krunic can be magical. Pioli knows what he sees in him so it’s up to us to trust his decisions.

dejan10

I’m pretty sure the scouser idiots will be walking alone tonight.

Rossi

If Leao isn’t avaliable then Diaz should start on the left. Krunic wont do anything there. Bennacer or Tonali as AM.

Ronaldinho80

Rebic is always injured. And what is wrong with Leao?