Ahead of AC Milan’s Coppa Italia fixture against Cagliari, reports have revealed that Luka Jovic and Samuel Chukwueze are set to start the game ahead of Olivier Giroud and Christian Pulisic.
With League leaders Inter and Scudetto-holders Napoli out of the competition, Milan will now be seen as a favourite for the tournament. As a result, Stefano Pioli will have to get his lineup right, as earning silverware this season would bring much-needed positivity to the club.
MilanNews have written that Pioli will recall Jovic and Chukwueze to the starting XI, with Olivier Giroud and Christian Pulisic set to take a place on the bench. While Pulisic scored on Saturday against Sassuolo, he and the Frenchman did not set the world alight with their performances and will be given a chance to rest.
Who will feature in the defensive line is still to be decided. Simon Kjaer will be assessed ahead of the clash, but the Dane looks unlikely to start the game, given the short turnaround from the clash against the Neroverdi. As a result, Jan-Carlo Simic will likely partner Theo Hernandez in central defence, Davide Calabria will start at right-back, and Alessandro Florenzi will take his position on the left.
Ismael Bennacer has already departed for the African Cup of Nations. With Yunus Musah still absent, Yacine Adli will make up the midfield three, partnering Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Tijjani Reijnders.
The front line will consist of Chukwueze (who will depart for AFCON after this fixture), Jovic and Rafael Leao, who will all be keen to impress, with the two incoming players wanting to earn a chance to start in the next Serie A game against Empoli.
Milan predicted XI (4-3-3): Maignan; Calabria, Simic, Hernandez, Florenzi; Loftus-Cheek, Adli, Reijnders; Chukwueze, Jovic, Leao.
Substitutes: Nava, Mirante, Bartesaghi, Jimenez, Nsiala, Krunic, Zeroli, Pulisic, Giroud, Chaka Traore.
Unavailable: Sportiello, Kalulu, Thiaw, Tomori, Pellegrino, Caldara, Musah, Bennacer, Pobega, Okafor.