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0 vs 4
Played
May 8, 2013 5:00 p.m. IST
Stadio Adriatico-Giovanni Cornacchia — Pescara
Referee:‬ C. Russo‎
Attendance:‬ 20476‎
 
 
Mario Balotelli 10′ (PG)
 
 
 
Top of the Match
Mario Balotelli
Mario Balotelli
Milan
Mario Balotelli
Mario Balotelli
Milan
Flop of the Match
Uros Cosic
Uros Cosic
Pescara
Giuseppe Rizzo
Giuseppe Rizzo
Pescara

Pescara 0-4 AC Milan: Balotelli double solidifies third spot

The Rossoneri could see their place in the Champions League confirmed later today after a dominant performance, capped by the controversial striker's clinical finishing

By Daniel Edwards

Milan players celebrating - Pescara-Milan
AFP
Two goals from Mario Balotelli were key for AC Milan as they recorded a simple victory over Pescara, running out 4-0 victors in a desperately one-sided encounter. The former Manchester City man opened the scoring from the penalty spot and rounded off victory with a second-half finish, Sulley Muntari and Mathieu Flamini also hitting to complete the rout and put one foot into the Champions League.

Milan wasted no time in getting on the front foot against already-relegated opposition, pushing forward in search of the points that would help them towards a third-place finish and Champions League football next season. The home team, with nothing to lose, also went for it, ensuring an entertaining start to the game and Balotelli should have taken the lead inside the first two minutes, but slammed against the bar with the goal open.

It did not take long for the striker to make amends. Antonio Nocerino's surge into the box was cut short by a clumsy challenge by Uros Cosic, and a penalty was the result. Balotelli stepped up confidently, and with just 10 minutes gone sent Mattia Perin the wrong way to open the scoring.

The goal was the cue for Milan to take control of the game, dominating possession and attacking vibrantly, especially down the right flank through M'Baye Niang. The youngster almost hit a second, ghosting past Marco Capuano before steering in a shot that was dragged just wide of Perin's upright. The best opportunity for Pescara came through Giuseppe Sculli, who ran onto a long pass to beat a sleepy back line before sending a half-volley disappointingly wide of goal.

The away team increased their advantage midway through the first half. Capuano's challenge on Balotelli out wide resulted in a free kick, floated by Robinho over the mass of bodies that had congregated on the near post and penalty spot. There waiting was Muntari, and the midfielder was blissfully unmarked as he volleyed past Perin and into the net, putting Milan two up at the interval and looking comfortable.

If the first 45 minutes were disappointing for the Delfini, the second period threatened to become a complete disaster. A slip from Luciano Zauri proved fatal as Robinho bypassed the defender five minutes after the break, and the Brazilian had time to pick his target out wide. A delicate cross was met perfectly by Mathieu Flamini, steaming in from deep and the ex-Arsenal man timed his volley well to make the score 3-0, ending the game as a contest.

Milan were now rampant and the only question remaining was how many would be added to the rout. Another arrived just before the hour, when Flamini took down an awkward lofted ball on the right and squared to Balotelli. The forward still had plenty to do, but turned impressively to shrug off his marker and finished with a shot right into the roof of the net, for his second of the encounter.

The Rossoneri cruised through what remained of the match, almost adding a fifth through substitute Giampaolo Pazzini who was denied one on one by Perin. It mattered not, however, as Milan held on to a four-goal advantage and picked up what could be three crucial points in the battle for the Champions League.

The win means Milan move seven points clear of Fiorentina in third, albeit having played an extra game. If the Viola lose away to Siena in the later kick-off, Massimiliano Allegri's men will be assured Champions League football for 2013-14.


Pescara

1
Mattia Perin
Goalkeeper
3.00
5
Marco Capuano
Defender
3.00
6
Luciano Zauri
Defender
3.00
14
Antonio Balzano
Defender
2.50
23
Uros Cosic
Defender
2.00
-
Emmanuel Cascione
Midfielder
2.00
18
Giuseppe Rizzo
Midfielder
11′
3.00
14
3.50
-
2.00
14
3.00
32
3.00

Milan

3.00
32
3.50
17
3.00
20
2.50
21
Kevin Constant
Midfielder
3.00
33
Mario Yepes
Defender
3.50
4
Sulley Muntari
Midfielder
33′
3.00
-
3.50
20
3.00
7
Robinho
Striker
33′ 51′ 73′
3.50
9
4.00
45

Substitutes

-
 - 
-
 - 
-
 - 
15
 - 
-
 - 
22
 - 
-
 - 
-
 - 
-
 - 
18
 - 

Substitutes

 - 
1
Marco Amelia
Goalkeeper
 - 
59
Gabriel
Goalkeeper
 - 
2
 - 
5
 - 
4
 - 
81
 - 
-
Bakaye Traoré
Midfielder
59′
 - 
21
 - 
24
3.00
11
3.50
92

Coach/Manager

-
 - 

Coach/Manager

 
  • Goal
  • Own Goal
  • Penalty
  • Penalty Missed
  • Yellow Card
  • Assist
  • Penalty Save
  • Penalty Shootout Goal
  • Penalty Shootout Miss
  • Yellow Card / Red Card
  • Red Card
  • Substitution IN
  • Substitution OUT
  • Injury
  • Goal.com Rating
  • Goal.com Man of the Match
  • Goal.com Flop of the Match
  • Top & Flop Global Ranking
  • Fans' Man of the Match
  • Fans' Flop of the Match
Results
 
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Ciro Immobile Ciro Immobile
Striker
Torino
19 0
Carlos Tévez Carlos Tévez
Striker
Juventus
18 1
Gonzalo Higuaín Gonzalo Higuaín
Striker
Napoli
17 5
Luca Toni Luca Toni
Striker
Verona
17 2
Rodrigo Palacio Rodrigo Palacio
Striker
Inter
15 0