AC Milan are set to name a very young team against Cagliari in the Coppa Italia this evening as Stefano Pioli seeks to rest his senior stars.
As pointed out by La Gazzetta dello Sport (as seen below), the Rossoneri are going to put trust in some Primavera stars against the Sardinian side with two 18-year-olds and two 19-year-olds expected to be in the starting lineup.
In the defence, 18-year-old Jan-Carlo Simic is expected to start, whilst 18-year-old Alex Jimenez is expected to be the left-back with Theo Hernandez playing at centre-back again.
As well as those two, 19-year-old Chaka Traore could start on the left wing ahead of Rafael Leao, with 19-year-old Luke Romero playing as the attacking midfielder in a 4-2-3-1 formation.
Milan have not played with two 18-year-olds in the starting lineup since December 23, 2016. That day, Gianluigi Donnarumma and Manuel Locatelli both started. It will happen again with Simic and Jimenez.
Pioli clearly has faith in this young team to get the result that is needed against Cagliari, and it could be worth Milan taking the Coppa Italia seriously.
Their path to the final looks much simpler than others. A win against Cagliari would see them face Atalanta or Sassuolo in the quarter-finals. A win there would mean they face Fiorentina or Bologna in the semi-finals.
None of those would be easy games, but it could be tougher.