Team news: Empoli were without Ardian Ismajli, Lorenzo Tonelli and Jean-Daniel Akpa Akpro, while Milan had to do without Mike Maignan, Theo Hernández, Alessandro Florenzi, Junior Messias, Divock Origi and Zlatan Ibrahimović. Kickoff was 20:45 CET at Stadio Carlo Castellani.

Goals: Rebić (80′), Bajrami (92′), Ballo-Touré (94′), Leão (97′)

Empoli F.C. (4-3-1-2) – Paolo Zanetti
Guglielmo Vicario; Petar Stojanović, Koni De Winter, Sebastiano Luperto, Fabiano Parisi; Nicolas Haas (83′ Nicolò Cambiaghi), Alberto Grassi (45+1′ Răzvan Marin), Liam Henderson (58′ Nedim Bajrami); Marko Pjaca (58′ Filippo Bandinelli); Martín Satriano (83′ Mattia Destro), Sam Lammers.
Unused: Perisan, Ujkani; Cacace, Ebuehi, Guarino, Walukiewicz; Baldanzi, Degli Innocenti, Fazzini; Ekong.

AC Milan (4-2-3-1) – Stefano Pioli
Ciprian Tătăruşanu; Davide Calabria (38′ Pierre Kalulu), Simon Kjær (72′ Sergiño Dest), Fikayo Tomori, Fodé Ballo-Touré; Ismaël Bennacer, Sandro Tonali; Alexis Saelemaekers (32′ Rade Krunić), Charles De Ketelaere (72′ Brahim Díaz), Rafael Leão; Olivier Giroud (72′ Ante Rebić).
Unused: Jungdal, Mirante; Gabbia, Thiaw; Adli, Bakayoko, Pobega, Vranckx; Lazetić.

Referee: Gianluca Aureliano.

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Nino

Pobega or Krunic should have started ahead of either Bennacer or Tonali who are both the first choice midfield tandem expected to star in the UCL game against Chelsea. Rotation is key and Pioli needs to trust some of these other players. This is Empoli and not Atalanta or Inter. Players like Vranckx need to play against teams like these to get into team chemistry and also help relieve the UCL squad through rotation. Well, it’s really difficult to criticize Pioli after winning the scudetto. We can only hope he realises that Milan has UCL pedigree. Winning a second scudetto… Read more »

SJF

I agree with you completely.
Squad players need some minutes so they are sharp when needed also.

Perhaps Pioli wants to get an hour into his first team to regain fluidity after being away.
Hope to see some of the likes of Adli, Rebic, vranckx etc get some solid minutes in the second half.
Also Giroud really needs a break, if he goes down we have problems

Jon

We lost our last game so I think Pioli is just playing safe!

milan4lyf

Hate to say this..
But Saele is really useless. Sadge.

K INC

Saladmaker is so bad

K INC

Great rotation Pioli smh

Nesta1

Calabria off now with hamstring injury, when will these injuries end

SJF

Honestly why did he start as he was recovering from injury?
Players dropping like flies, we need to rotate

Nino

When Pioli stops overworking players. He is rigid. Yes, he won the scudetto, but you’ve got to trust your other players. Calabria came off injured against Napoli. Why start him when you have Kalulu and Dest available as RB? Coupled with the fact that there’s a UCL game at midweek? Again, reality check means, playing to the strength of your squad. There are already injuries. Why not change formation to suite the options on the bench? This is Empoli. Now a depleted UCL squad is losing more players to injuries because Pioli is too scared to rotate. Adli, Vranckx, Thiaw,… Read more »

SJF

Also kjaer now injured. Another player who had been recovering and shouldn’t have started

Christian

Defeat is looming… 🙁

Christian

If I didn’t write this we wouldn’t have won, believe me 🙂 Well done guys, a win as only a great team can achieve. Forca

SJF

Frustrating first half, missed some good chances.
Interesting to see Leao play right and cdk left after salamakers went off.
We do need to try different options on the right.
Think Rebic would be a useful introduction in 2nd half, he has goals in him and Giroud needs a break before Chelsea games

Gems

This game is turning into a nightmare for injures
I think tomori’s just picked up a knock to

Gems

Why can’t adli get a run
he looked so promising in pre season ,
Milan dropping like flies
adli’s probably better than de ket & he’s definitely better than brahim diaz imo

SJF

Yes he deserves a chance. CDK has talent but is not doing the business

Rossi

That was strange, moving Leao on the right while not puting De Katelare there despite him being played as a RW in Brudge and being left footed. This would have been the perfect time to try CDK as a RW.

SJF

Or try Rebic or Diaz etc

Rossi

Yes that would’ve been good too.

PJOHNSON

We need a new backup GK, This guy scares me every time Empoli comes forward

Oluwa Shevy

I really don’t understand this mercato honestly I just pray we scramble a win here anyway we should

milan4lyf

At this rate.. we wont have enough players for UCL. Mind you, we have Adli, Vrankxx, Thiaw on the bench for serie A but Pioli decided to field the UCL team against a physical team like Empoli. We could’ve easily fielded our B team and if we were trailing we could just field our first team.

Now it looks like we are about to lose this Stup*id Game.

K INC

Lol at Piolis lack of subs, now we lost Calabria and Kjaer. And why did we sell solidarity and keep Tara and Mirante?

milan4lyf

Kjaer as well? 3 players in injured in one game? WTF? Well done Pioli. Keep fielding the rest of the players till they die or something. Pioli sure has his strengths.. but managing a UCL team isn’t surely one of them.

Nino

Perfect Pioli. Adli, Vranckx, Thiaw not registered for UCL and yet can’t get minutes against Empoli!

Nesta1

Rebic, goooooooaaaalllllllll

Oluwa Shevy

Ante rebic nice one goal

Nino

It’s good to win, but at what cost? I think a starting eleven with Pobega, Adli, Thiaw, Vranckx could have held their own against Empoli without risking the first team squad who are just coming off the treatment table. Besides, squad rotation is so important, considering that Vranckx, Thiaw and Adli are not even registered for UCL.

Niels8

I think that’s probably what Pioli was going to do if they manage to secure the lead until the midway of the game. As they were struggling, he prioritised the more dependable personnel to secure the win. The team had just lost last week, and a win here is crucial. It would have made more sense to gamble with new players had Milan been in a better position before the game. I understand the fans’ (and my) frustration though, especially regarding Adli who shone in the preseason. As for the injuries we got today, no one could have predicted it,… Read more »

AC Milan

Love the drama at the end. Good win.

Nesta1

Wtf!! Toure goooiiaaaalllll

Dindudre

TRUST. ALL. OF. YOUR. PLAYERS!
and give them freedom to play and score more goals.

Nesta1

Leao goooooaaaalllllll

Last edited 1 month ago by Nesta1
Dindudre

Stop it Leao!!!! . He’s so freaking good!!! Pay this man.

Oluwa Shevy

What a game high tension one at that.nice win use the momentum for Tuesday just painful it has to be our players that were injured I don’t know if Theo will be fit for Tuesday

Milancrazyfan

Wow what a thriller. Leao a a beast. Please managment give him the money already. He keeps this up arabs will have no problem paying 250mil for him. Bravo to “BENCH WARMERS” they stepped up tonight. Cdk plenty of room to improve, one thing he can learn from diaz is how to take charge and ask for the ball and carry it. However our injury list is problematic at the moment. Pioli, maybe should rotate a bit more. Calabria should have not started this game. He already had that muscle strain from napoli game. Anyways, the schedule this year is… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Milancrazyfan
SJF

Milan were so lucky, first goal was a foul throw.
Thankfully we got the points. With inter losing again we need to be capitalising!

Very happy for Ballo Toure, hope that goal gives him the belief he needs

Leao what can you say, he was awesome tonight. Sure he missed chances but how many he created and what a goal!!
We just can’t do without him

Last edited 1 month ago by SJF
Emmy Apache

The greatest celebration is coming back
so happy for this dying minute cracker and the beautiful part of it is the willingness and spirit of our players to get the 3 points
my children are jubilating and celebrating
Fooooooooorrrrrrrrrrrrzzzzzzzzzzaaaaaaaaaa Milan
we are getting there

SJF

Pioli needs to believe in his squad. First half empoli were awful and we shud have been a couple of goals up.
No reason vranckx, dest, gabbia etc couldn’t have held there own.

Anyway he has no choice now half the squad is injured

SJF

With Messias and Salamakers injured, pioli will be forced to try Diaz or Rebic on the right, it could be a blessing in disguise.
Think its time Adli got his chance too, obviously only in Serie a as hes not on our cl list.
We are well into the season now so time to start using Vranckx, Thiaw, Gabbia, Adli etc.
This sport is no longer about 11 players, its all about depth

AC Milan

It’s not like we have any players left to choose from. I wonder if our youth team will get some promotion?

Yusfull99

Definitely would love to see
leao – CDK – Rebic or Leao – Diaz-CDK
at the back of Giroud and thank God origi is also back