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26 January 2012
• Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, Milano
Referee: A. Gervasoni
• Attendance: 1920
C. Seedorf 18'
Z. Ibrahimovic 84'
D. Cissé 5'
90' + 4'
And that's full time! Milan triumph at home over Lazio, despite a beginning that suggested otherwise. It's 3-1 to Milan on the night after a great showing from El Shaarawy in particular. I'm Julian De Martinis; thank you for joining us tonight on Goal.com!
90' + 2'
Klose sends a low shot bobbling wide of the far post.
Stankevicius gets a solid header on target in the box but Amelia is able to get down to save it. Milan counter quickly and Nocerino's shot is deflected off Konko for a corner as the match heads into four minutes of injury time.
Robinho coming off for 18-year-old Simone Calvano, who gets a few minutes to show off his talent. The youngster usually appears for Milan's primavera side.
Ledesma tries to slip a pass through Milan's defence but a sliding Mexes is able to deflect the ball harmlessly for Amelia to collect. Lazio are playing with some urgency now but it seems too little, too late.
Yellow Card Antonio Nocerino
Nocerino booked for an unnecessary foul on Hernanes.
Goal Zlatan Ibrahimovic
AND MILAN GO UP BY THREE! Emanuelson does wonderful to dribble through two players and set Ibrahimovic completely free to waltz towards goal, though there is a hint of offside there. Nevertheless, he plays on, and one-on-one against Marchetti, the ever-calm Swede slots it by the goalie and the ball bobbles into the net! 3-1 to Milan!
Lazio have two free kicks within a few minutes right outside Milan's box, but both of them are disappointing from Reja's point of view.
Hernanes plays a pass right out of bounds in an uncharacteristic display of sloppiness from him.
Nearly a third for Milan from El Shaarawy! The youngster races through the heart of the visitor's defence and fires a shot that beats Marchetti but goes agonizingly wide of the far post.
A rare sight: Ibrahimovc rushing back to prevent Lazio from nicking the ball from his team. The Swede does very well there to maintain possession.
Abate makes a surging run from his fullback position in towards the centre of the Lazio box, but he's stopped just before he gets within shooting range.
Simone Del Nero
Lazio are turning up the heat in these final 15 minutes as they surge forward for an equalizer, as Del Nero comes on for Matuzalem.
Ledesma rifles a shot on goal but it's straight at Amelia, who has no trouble holding it.
Another substitution from Allegri as Seedorf comes off for Emanuelson.
Ibrahimovic has been a lively figure so far, stretching Lazio's backline though he was just caught offside. Cisse on the counter fires a good shot on goal that Amelia is forced to parry over the crossbar for a corner.
Yellow Card Mark van Bommel
Van Bommel is booked for literally holding back Hernanes with his arm, after the Lazio man caught the Milan midfielder out of position and looked to run by him.
Allegri throws on Ibrahimovic for the injured Merkel. Instead of setting up shop, the Milan coach is looking for a third goal here.
Merkel is taken off after all by Allegri, and Milan are temporarily down to 10 men.
Merkel is gingerly limping after clashing with Lulic in the buildup to Klose's header, but he's back on his feet, so to speak, and seems to be alright.
Substitute Klose nearly scores with his first involvement in the match with a header from close range.
Abate and Merkel team up on the right to advance towards goal; the latter's cross is blocked but makes its way to Mesbah, who whips in a great cross that gets cleared! El Shaarawy then tries a volley that just goes over the bar from inside the box! Great pressure from Milan.
Dias gets away with an awful challenge in the box! Mexes nearly scores from the corner but all eyes are on Dias' arm as he swings it into Van Bommel! The player gets lucky as the referee fails to spot the infringement!
Stankevicius is forced to clear the ball from Mesbah after Robinho had sent the fullback to the byline.
Milan absolutely encamped in Lazio's box but can't get a shot off! Seedorf had the best opportunity of that spell, but a second of hesitation saw him robbed of possession. Lazio counter quickly and Cisse tries a shot from outside the box that is well off target. Besides the goal, he's having quite a poor match.
Lazio now on the rise, but having trouble breaking into Milan's box. Konko in particular has been quite lively in spurring his side forward.
Goal.com's Kris Voakes' view from the stand sheds some insight into how the substitution changed the game tactically: "Lazio's change to a back four seems to have done Milan a favour really. Lulic's attacking threat had been forcing Abate back, but now their more narrow midfield is a little less threatening. What Ledesma has added, the new shape has seemingly taken away."
Both sides are having very difficult times advancing past the midfield now, as the introduction of Ledesma seems to have clogged it somewhat.
Ledesma's deep cross is too far for Gonzalez to reach and it rolls out for a goalkick.
A few fresh faces on the sidelines for Milan: possible new signing Maxi Lopez is watching the match, and Pippo Inzaghi is warming up as well.
Lazio are being terrible wasteful in midfield and lose the ball again. Merkel capitalizes this time and sends a wonderful ball across the face of goal, but none of his teammates are there to stab it into the net.
Ledesma loses the ball in the midfield which allows El Shaarawy to race towards goal. He tries to get around Stankevicius but the defender is able to read his movement and shepards the ball out for a goalkick.
E Shaarawy goes down inside the Lazio box under pressure from Konko but the referee isn't fooled as the Milan striker went down just a bit too easily.
As the second half begins as Ledesma comes on for Diakite, Goal.com's own Kris Voakes has a few words on what Lazio needs to get back into the match: "Cristian Ledesma has been warming up extensively at the break, and you'd back him to give Lazio a few more ideas in the middle. After their early progression down either wing they've really lost out in the centre, so his addition might give an otherwise superior Milan reason to keep their guard up."
45' + 1'
And that's the half after no additional time is played. Milan are up 2-1 after a good start from Lazio, but neither side's defence has been convincing so far. Join us in 15 minutes for the second half!
Seedorf plays a fantastic ball into Lazio's box but Merkel just fails to get on the end of it, much to the relief of Marchetti.
Hernanes plays in a solid free kick but it's quite central and Amelia parries it over for a corner, from which Cisse's shot hits the near side's netting.
Yellow Card Daniele Bonera
Lazio have a free kick just outside the box after Bonera and Hernanes collided- the former is booked and the latter stands over the dead ball.
Abate's solid run on the right, following a great cross-field ball from Seedorf, forces Lulic to kick the ball out for a corner. Milan take it short and play it it around the box before whipping a ball in that Dias is able to clear.
Lazio have another free kick about 15 yards outside the box. Hernanes stands over it and takes a shot on target but his effort is miles wide of the near post.
Ouf an awful miss from Cisse! Unmarked, he gets on the end of a high ball in the box and fires it well, well wide of the far post. He has his head in his hands as he knows how much better he should have done!
Abate reads Merkel's run beautifully and sends a perfect ball into the path of the midfielder. The latter's cross is disappointing and the visitors are able to come away with the ball.
The endless war between Stankevicius and El Shaarawy continues, with the Milan striker winning a free kick after being fouled by the former. It comes to nothing, however.
Rocchi is whistled offside as he rushes infield to retrieve a ball. Lazio are getting more and more into the match now.
Stankevicius finally wins a battle with El Shaarawy after using his strength to get in between the youngster and the ball before winning a free kick when the Milan man fouled him.
Lazio are putting Milan under more pressure now, after a free kick from Hernanes and a few crosses into the box, but none of these efforts have tested Amelia.
Robinho is called offside after a fantastic exchange with Seedorf. The Brazilian had the ball and backheeled it to his captain before racing forward to receive the exchange pass right outside the box.
Van Bommel strides forward and makes it all the way to Lazio's box, before firing a tame effort right at Marchetti.
Kris Voakes, Goal.com's Italian Football Editor. is at the San Siro: "This has been one of the most absorbing openings at San Siro since these two met on the opening night of the Serie A season! Milan took some time to get going, with Lazio looking sharp on the ball, but since then some moments of great technical quality have opened up the visitors at will at times. More goals to come, you feel!"
El Shaarawy brings the crowd to their feet after dribbling past Stankevicius on the wing. He gets the ball out of the box, and Van Bommel rushes to meet it with a long range effort, but his shot is deflected.
Oh, that should've been a third for Milan! Dias makes an awful mistake, gifting Robinho possession after a very poor backpass to his goalie. Robinho rounds the keeper but his finish hits the side netting!
A super save from Amelia! Gonzalez gets on the end of a cross, completely unmarked, and directs a powerful header towards net. Amelia pulls off a fantastic reflex stop to keep the ball out of the goal, and then reacts very well to Konko's rebound to keep his side ahead.
Konko plays a solid pass into the heart of the Milan defence which catches Mexes out of position and forces Bonera to rush and clear.
It's been a remarkable first half so far, with Milan going from a goal down to two up, all within less than 20 minutes!
Goal C. Seedorf
A STUNNER FROM SEEDORF! Milan have scored 2 goals in 3 minutes! El Shaarawy had a fantastic backheel to take two players out of the way and slip Seedorf in towards net. The veteran rounded Dias and then sent an absolute belter into the roof of the net! 2-1 to the home side!
The goal has given quite a bit of confidence to Allegri's men. They're now playing much more freely and controlling the match, though without getting too far up field.
ROBINHO GOAL! Lazio were unable to clear heavy pressure from Milan, and the home side's persistence paid off. Abate played in a cross that was deflected off of Stankevicius and fell perfectly for the Brazilian. While the ball was still in the air, Robinho furiously lashed at it and sent it into the roof of the net from mere yards away! 1-1 and game on!
Hernanes plays a great ball into the back post, which Stankevicius reaches and knocks back across goal. The ball goes out for a goal kick and Milan counter.
Nocerino takes down Cisse after stepping on the striker's foot and the referee awards Milan a free kick. The home side look a few gears out of sorts so far in this match.
Robinho wastes a Milan counter-attack after some heavy pressure from Lazio. The striker tried to square the shot but it went straight to Stankevicius, who cleared it easily.
Bonera tries a very audacious chip over the top for El Shaarawy but to no avail as the Lazio defence is easily able to nod it away.
Lulic gets past Merkel in the box and fires a shot on goal, which Amelia initially parries and later collects.
Milan look to get back into this as soon as possible, but Lazio are hungry and smell blood. The home side can't keep the ball at the moment and the visitors look dangerous.
Goal Djibril Cissé
LAZIO GOOALLL! Cisse makes his return to the scoresheet after taking advantage of poor defending from Milan. Gonzalez played a perfect cross into the box, and the Frenchman waltzed in between the two Milan centre-halves to coolly finish past Amelia. 1-0 to the visitors!
The home side, in their usual red and black kit, do well to keep the ball for an extended period of time but without much penetrating forces. The visitors, playing in white, are able to counter and Hernanes whips in a dangerous cross that Bonera clears.
Milan's first attack begets a shot on goal, but Robinho's effort from the left was lacking power and pace. Marchetti had no problem gathering that, but it was all too easy for Milan to counter through Lazio's defence there.
And we have kickoff! Lazio begin attacking with a deep cross from the defence but Mexes rises to the occasion. Vam Bommel then loses possession in the midfield, gifting Lazio a throw in.
Moments away from kick-off now as captains Seedorf and Rocchi exchange handshakes in the coin toss.
Kris Voakes, Goal.com's Italian Football Editor is at San Siro currently relaying a hilarious scene where one of the pitch's sprinklers has malfunctioned, leaving a rather sticky pool in the middle of the south half of the pitch, so don't be too surprised if the ball gets stuck mid-play as somebody attacks to the right of your TV screens!
Should things go awry, both coaches have potent options just waiting to be used. Ibrahimovic, Nesta, and Emanuelson are all available for Allegri to call from the bench; Edy has Ledesma, Klose, and Biava to call upon as well.
As for Lazio, Radu joins the injury table and Klose is rested as Cisse and Rocchi are given the chance to start in front of Hernanes. Marchetti; Diakitè, Stankevicius, Dias; Konko, Gonzalez, Matuzalem, Lulic; Hernanes; Cissè, Rocchi
The line ups have been announced, and both Allegri and Edy Reja have tinkered with their sides from what Serie A is used to seeing. Milan have to cope with injuries to the likes of Boateng and Aquilani as well as the continued loss of long term absentees such as Gattuso and Cassano. Meanwhile, Thaigo Silva is being rested for the match as well. New signing Mesbah is given his first start for the club and El Shaarawy is given a rare nod in the initial eleven as well. Amelia; Abate, Mexes, Bonera, Mesbah; Merkel, Van Bommel, Nocerino; Seedorf; Robinho, El Shaarawy
Neither team had an easy passage into the quarter-finals. Lazio were made to struggle more than they would have liked against Hellas Verona, who came back from two goals down to nearly snatch the win before Hernanes' last minute winner. Maximiliano Allegri's men needed extra time to break a 1-1 draw with Novara at home, with Alexandre Pato finally settling the game with his 100th minute winner.
Welcome to Goal.com's match coverage of AC Milan-Lazio! In this one legged Coppa Italia showdown, Lazio travel away to the San Siro in order to take on the Scudetto holders for the right of passage into the semi-finals. A two legged affair with Juventus awaits the winner come February and March. At the end of tonight's game, one of these giants will be out of the Coppa.
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