GdS: Probable XIs for Milan vs. Atalanta – Krunic drops to the bench

By Oliver Fisher -

There are three days left until the crucial clash between AC Milan and Atalanta at San Siro, which has ramifications in the Scudetto race and the battle for the European spots.

According to what is being reported by La Gazzetta dello Sport (via MilanNews), head coach Stefano Pioli should field an unchanged defence consisting of Mike Maignan in goal, Davide Calabria, Pierre Kalulu, Fikayo Tomori and Theo Hernandez.

Sandro Tonali and Ismael Bennacer are likely to return as the double pivot pairing with Franck Kessie playing further ahead of them in the attacking midfielder role, meaning Rade Krunic returns to the bench.

Alexis Saelemaekers is tipped to get the nod on the right wing, with Rafael Leao on the left wing and Olivier Giroud up front as the striker.

Probable Milan XI (4-2-3-1): Maignan; Calabria, Kalulu, Tomori, Theo; Tonali, Bennacer; Saelemaekers, Kessie, Leao; Giroud.

Probable Atalanta XI (3-4-1-2): Musso; Djimsiti, Demiral, Palomino; Hateboer, De Roon, Freuler, Zappacosta; Pasalic; Muriel, Malinovskyi.

Tags AC Milan Milan Atalanta


  1. This is not a good idea, I would rather krunic keep his spot there as he played well against Verona, kessie has proven nothing in every game he has played as a CAM, he offers nothing there, I would rather move tonali forward and keep bennacer and kessie back

  2. Mistake to drop Krunic.
    Bennacer added nothing when he came on, only fresh legs.
    Kessie holding; Krunic and Tonali alternating forward.
    Rebic in for Saelemaekers.
    Lazetic should be on the bench too..

  3. I actually like Kessie as CAM versus Atalanta. He always rises to the occasion and plays his best football vs his former club. In October vs them was one of his best matches all year and last year in final match of season vs them, he was MOTM and fantastic in all phases.

    Krunic was really great versus Verona for sure and he worked very hard in that match (so maybe he may be a bit tired from that and can’t start and play 60+ minutes this weekend too?); and if for some reason, the Kessie experiment doesn’t work well, then he can sub Krunic in second half.

    The Rebic suggestion is a good/interesting one though on this thread too. He can play CAM; but also Rebic I think will sub in for Saele at the RW position in the second half (hopefully very early in 2nd half).

  4. Its all in the tactics…watch and learn…kessie is gonna drop deaper and tonali is gonna move between the lines and attack the space…same like we did against verona but it would be too obvious if we kept krunic on.

  5. I think the CAM position is now rotated during the match. Tonali and Bennacer are given more chances to go forward. I think even Theo took that role sometimes in the last few games.

  6. seems that when game time starts, changes may be made again,,,,,have doubted Pioli in the past however he seems to push all the correct buttons, give Atalanta no hope……THIS IS the game of the year,the Scudetto is the prize, so wish I could be at San Siro.

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