AC Milan will get their 2023-24 Serie A campaign underway in just a few days as they face Bologna at the Stadio Renato dall’Ara on Monday 21 August.
As our colleagues at SempreMilan.it report, it is a match that will see the official competitive debuts of several new signings including three players who have already climbed Stefano Pioli’s hierarchies, namely Christian Pulisic, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Tijjani Reijnders.
Midfield takes shape
There are three players who are practically untouchable for the head coach given that he has used them in his ‘first string’ in preseason with the precise aim of having them at 100% for the Bologna game.
Two of them are in midfield, where Loftus-Cheek and Reijnders will position themselves either side of Rade Krunic in the new-look midfield trio as the two mezzalas.
Faith in Pulisic
However, it is a different matter for Pulisic who could play anywhere on the frontline including as a playmaker if Pioli decided to use the 4-2-3-1 system he has made his own over the past three years.
Against Bologna it should be the USA international who starts on the right side while waiting for Samuel Chukwueze to get to 100%, though he is destined to take over the reins at some point given the wing pairing foreseen with Rafael Leao.
It is not expected that Noah Okafor will be there against the Rossoblu because he is still behind the others in his preparation, but when he is ready he should rotate with Olivier Giroud in the No.9 role.
Musah and Romero
The player who has perhaps shown himself to be in the best condition in preseason is Luka Romero, who will immediately have a chance to show his capabilities and could come off the bench.
The former Lazio man could play anywhere across the forward line but also as a mezzala, while it is a similar discussion for Yunus Musah who however is also behind in preparation so it will still take some time before he is seen on the field consistently.