Tuttosport: Probable XIs for Milan vs. Atalanta – Thiaw back from start

By Isak Möller -

AC Milan will take on an in-form Atalanta tomorrow and with seven points separating the sides, the Rossoneri need to come away with a win. Given the importance of the game, Stefano Pioli is set to field the usual XI. 

Atalanta have been in great form lately and could move within four points of Milan tomorrow, and with a game in hand as well. Therefore, it will be very important for Pioli and his men to come away with all three points, or at least not to lose.

According to Tuttosport (see photo below), Pioli is expected to field the usual starting XI, though putting Malick Thiaw in the centre of the defence. The German had a disastrous game against Monza and will surely be eager to prove his qualities.

Probable Milan XI (4-2-3-1): Maignan; Florenzi, Thiaw, Gabbia, Hernandez; Bennacer, Reijnders; Pulisic, Loftus-Cheek, Leao; Giroud.

Probable Atalanta XI (3-4-1-2): Carnesecchi; Scalvini, Djimsiti, Kolasinac; Holm, Ederson, De Roon, Ruggeri; Koopmeiners; Miranchuk, De Ketelaere.

Rafael Leao bagged a goal against Rennes but struggled throughout the game and he will need to be at his best tomorrow. He still hasn’t scored in the league since September and tomorrow would be the perfect opportunity to change that.

Tags AC Milan Atalanta Malick Thiaw Stefano Pioli


  1. The fact that Atalanta could be within 4 points with a game in hand is unsettling. Literally 2 weeks ago we were coasting to 3rd, and now if we lose we could be only 1 point above 4th depending on other results. It’s precisely where we didn’t want to be at this point in the season. Bologna is lurking too. How sad would it be if Atalanta and Bologna finished 3rd and 4th, and Motta and Zirkzee are like “no thanks” when we come calling in the summer because we’re 5th.

    1. Have you seen Atalanta’s schedule coming up? There’s no way they aren’t dropping any points in the next six games. NO WAY.

      We got this.

      1. Atalanta has been the most in form team in the league last 10-12 games with Inter. We were up there too but stumbled. And they’re not conceding much too. I wouldn’t put it past them to do better than us in the same stretch. We got all our bogey teams and Lazio lol 😂. Sassuolo, Verona, Firoentina and of Inter

  2. I’m concerned with Thiaw starting. I have completely lost confidence in him. I wonder if Simic would be better. It’s hard to start such a young player in a very important game against quality opposition but despite his age he’s been composed and calm when he had the opportunity to play with the first team; he seems mature beyond his age.

    Yes, by now 3rd place and even 4th place are in jeopardy. We must win this game and it won’t be easy; Atalanta seems to have our number.

    1. Why? Because he made a dumb challenge? You know any defenders that haven’t made dumb challenges at 22? He’ll grow and learn.

      i just hope he’s in a better mental framework for this game. I’d rather take my chances with Thiaw than Kjaer coming off a game Thursday.

      1. His reckless last man challenges are too frequent – e.g. Juve game. I’d go with Simic and Gabbia since Gabbia isn’t the fastest either.

      2. I share Luigi’s concern because I see a pattern of dumb challenges this season not only the last one.

        I also see his potential.

        That said Simic was shockingly composed and aggressive. Not saying start him here. I am saying he needs to get minutes at end of games frequently to while we reintegrate Tomori.

      3. Rest as a professional footballer /defender clear a player inside box 18th, ref didn’t blown u made the worst challenge inside the box… I can tell you that Thaiw was bribed to do that. He sells that game for gambling

  3. I think we should respect Atalanta and go for more sit-back and counter approach with emphasize on zonal defense rather than our usual man-marking pressing and high line.
    Atalanta proved twice this season that they are perfectly able to punish us for being overextended and are themselves deadly on the counters.
    Also with Bennacer far from his best and Thiaw still rusty and slow, being disposessed while being high up the pitch cand be our demise.
    A game like against PSG in SanSiro or against Napoli might be ugly and unconvincing but with our current setup it’s the best way to avoid conceiding goals.

    1. If there is a starter on the list that concerns me it is Benny. He simply wasn’t fit mid week. Trouble is I’m not sure who to start in his place. Adli needs time to develop not get tossed into the crucible. Musah the same.

      I think I’d favor Musah from the start with a tactical set up that is stop everything, don’t go past half line. Stay in our have 10 to 20 yards in front of defense. Same with Reinjders but allow him more freedom to roam forward on the counter?

      I’d hold on to Benny as a super sub for the first guy we need to replace. He may not be fully fit, but with 20-30 min in him his passing could break open the game or aid us in holding possession when we need it.

      3-1 Milan. Puli, RLC and Reinjders. Assists from Puli, Leao.

      1. Musah along with Chuk have been awful and the worst high profile transfers. He belongs on the bench but unlike Chuk, if he plays like crap – we open up an already troubled defense.

        1. I agree Musah doesn’t play well as a right back, right wing etc. But in the pivot he seems out best option. Energy and pace and a willingness to get chippy.

          Musah was bought to develop, not to rely on day to day as I understand it. So I guess I’m a bit more willing to accept the faults. Chuk is 24 and was supposed to be the starter. IMO apples and oranges.

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