CorSera: Objective completed by Milan with a game to spare – now the focus is the league

By Oliver Fisher -

It was mission accomplished for AC Milan on Thursday night as they secured qualification for the Europa League knockout stages, a report claims.

As il Corriere della Sera reports (via MilanNews), Milan’s owners Elliott Management made it very clear in the summer that the Europa League – while often snubbed by Italian clubs – is an important competition in which the Rossoneri must try and get as far as possible.

Thanks to yesterday’s win against Celtic and the simultaneous defeat of Sparta Prague against Lille, Milan have reached the knockout stages with a game to spare.

It was not exactly all straightforward for Pioli’s team, as they went 2-0 down in the early stages against Celtic and lost Simon Kjaer to a muscle problem.

However, in the absence of Zlatan Ibrahimovic it was Hakan Calhanoglu’s turn to lead the Rossoneri and he started the comeback with a fine goal from a free-kick. Castillejo, Hauge and Diaz the fired Milan to three decisive points.

By next Thursday the Diavolo will know if they will go through as first or second in group H, but the relief is that for two and a half months they can think of the league and the league only, with the round of 32 scheduled between 18 and 25 February.

Tags AC Milan