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14 January 2013
• Stadio Comunale Luigi Ferraris, Genova
Referee: M. Guida
• Attendance: 24544
That is it from us here at Goal.com, but be sure to keep it with us for all the post-match news and analysis, including match report and player ratings. My name is Tom Webber and it has been a pleasure to guide you through tonight's match. Have a great evening.
The final whistle goes! That proved to be the last action of what was a fairly disappointing draw between Sampdoria and Milan. The Rossoneri never looked threatening, while the hosts will no doubt be content with a point.
90' + 3'
It is played short and worked out wide to Mexes. The Frenchman plays in a decent first-time cross with the outside of his boot but the offside flag is raised as the strikers look to run onto it.
90' + 3'
A free kick 35 yards from goal offers Milan possibly their last chance of the game. Can they steal all three points?
90' + 2'
Well over the bar! That just about sums up the Rossoneri's evening. De Sciglio finds Robinho on the far side but his shot as appalling and sails well off target.
90' + 1'
A corner for Sampdoria in the first minute of an additional three is dealt with easily by the Milan defence. There was a lack of commitment in the area from the hosts there.
Costa plays a long, high ball up to Icardi but the Argentine cannot bring it under control inside the area. He lays it back and possession is worked to Obiang and his cross is headed behind by Constant.
Quite why Allegri has opted to take off a striker and bring on a midfielder, I do not know. Milan, as the superior side, should be chasing the win here. Instead the coach is looking to tighten things up. An odd decision to say the least.
Yellow Card Daniele Gastaldello
Obiang does brilliantly to pick up the ball in midfield and beat his man with one touch, but his second lacks the same quality as he sends his pass straight to the Milan defence.
It is now Milan's turn to sit back and allow the opposition to control the ball. There really is almost a cup-tie feel about this game. There are five minutes remaining and both sides look desperate for the winner.
Sampdoria finally push on as they look to capitalise on a counterattack but the move comes to an end as Tissone adds yet another diabolical touch, putting in a cross that is nowhere near one of his team-mates.
Mexes rises highest in the area to meet the resultant corner but he is unable to find either side of the net, instead sending the ball straight into the arms of Romero.
Sampdoria are sitting back now and inviting Milan onto them, clearly hopeful of seeing out the draw. It almost costs them as a long ball up is not dealt with by Tissone. Flamini pounces on the lose ball but his shot is deflected just wide of the post off of the Argentine.
Milan almost grab a goal as a deep corner is met at the back post by Boateng. He sends it straight into the danger area but it seems to get caught up amongst a horde of bodies and Sampdoria get it away.
Some tidy footwork on the wing from Boateng creates the space to whip a cross into the box. He looks for the head of Niang but puts the ball just out of reach of the forward and Romero collects.
Poli, who has worked extremely hard this evening, hits the deck after over-stretching himself to reach the ball. He gets it stretched out from a member of the opposition before walking off the pitch. Looks like he is going to be fine.
Yellow Card M'Baye Niang
Time for retribution for Niang as he sends an elbow out at the face of Costa. It is a rather gentle one so the referee gives him the benefit of the doubt and only shows him a yellow.
Niang beats Costa to the ball but the Sampdoria defender's swing for it catches the Frenchman. He screams as he drops to the ground but is told to get up and get on with it by his coach. And rightly so, contact was minimal at best there.
This match is very finely balanced. You get the feeling that it could go either way now, so both sides will need to keep up their concentration in order to keep any potential mistakes at bay.
Stephan El Shaarawy
Well there is the change from Allegri, with Robinho replacing the largely ineffectual El Shaarawy. But with the youngster have saved Milan's skin so many times this season, perhaps withdrawing Niang would have been a better idea.
Close from De Silvestri! The full-back has proved a more than a capable deputy for Berardi this evening, charging forward and lashing a shot across goal. Abbiati is at a loss but the attempt shades the outside of the post.
The hosts are really cranking up the pressure now and are pressing Milan higher and higher up the pitch. The Rossoneri are going to need a change soon because they are looking bereft of ideas in attack.
Just wide from Icardi! Sampdoria have responded brilliantly to that scare. After pulling a save from Abbiati, Eder feeds Icardi with a splendid through-ball that puts the Argentine one-on-one. He tries to slip it past the keeper and nestle it in the corner but slightly misjudges it and shoots wide.
WHAT A SAVE!! Sampdoria hang on to their clean sheet by the skin of their teeth. Bojan receives a cross from Niang at the near post but can only move it on towards the back. Fortunately Boateng is there to put the ball back on target but Romero manages to get his hands on it and keep it out.
Boateng gives the ball away in his own half once more. The Ghanaian has had a pretty poor game in the middle of the park and has struggled to get forward and support the strikers.
That was a real chance! De Sciglio finally looked to have played the right ball as he sent in a low cross from the byeline. Bojan was lurking in the area but had possession poked away from him at the last moment. Milan need to make the most of those sorts of chances.
Well wide from Niang. He does well to shield the ball from Obiang and move across the top of the box but his final effort never looks like worrying Romero. We have only seen glimpses of his talent so far this evening.
Another poor delivery from De Sciglio. The movement of the Milan forwards could well have been better, but he ultimately just kicked the ball straight out of play. Things are not clicking for the visitors.
A win for Milan would see them jump up to sixth in the table, just two points adrift of Fiorentina in the final spot for European qualification. There is still a long way to go this season but it is games like this where the Rossoneri will need to come out on top if they are to push for a top-three finish.
Niang and Bojan combine well on the right and the Frenchman drills a low cross into the area. It is sent behind for a corner but the youngster will take confidence from that, he looks a different player this half.
JUST WIDE!! A brilliant spell for Sampdoria comes to a close with Estigarribia shooting from 25 yards out. His effort takes a wicked deflection off of Zapata which leaves Abbiati rooted to the spot, but he breathes a sigh of relief as it drops just wide of the goal.
SUPER SAVE!! Excellent play from Niang as he comes to life for the first time this evening. He rolls the ball between Costa's legs and searches out the far corner with a thunderous strike. Romero has his bases covered, though, and tips it behind,.
And here we go, the second 45 minutes have begun. Will Milan step it up and get that valuable win or will Sampdoria inflict another upset?
Welcome back! The players are re-emerging from the tunnel so we are just a few moments away from the second half.
HALF TIME Sampdoria 0-0 Milan: The hosts have probably edged that first half, looking far more dangerous in the final third having pulled a string of saves from Abbiati in the early stages. The Rossoneri will need to seriously pick it up in the second half if they are to avoid missing out on some much-needed points. Join me in 15 minutes for the second half.
45' + 1'
Eder flicks a corner from front post to the back but it is just out of the reach of De Silvestri. The wing-back manages to win another for his team but Eder heads it over the bar before the half-time whistle goes.
Just one minute of added time to be played in Genoa and Sampdoria have the ball in the opposing half.
The Paraguayan is the one who fires it in but it is a Milan head that gets to it first. The visitors subsequently counter through Bojan and the Spaniard carries the ball right up to the edge of the area before sending another wayward shot behind the goal.
Estigarribia pops up on the right flank and shows his swift feet as he cuts inside of Boateng to win his side a free kick. Sampdoria will pump the bodies into the box in the hope of grabbing a goal before half time.
Bojan switches the play from right to left with a decent cross-field ball that finds El Shaarawy at the back post. The young Italian looks up and clips a cross into the area but it is once more a blue shirt that gets to it first and the danger is cleared.
Yellow Card Philippe Mexes
De Silvestri motors into space down the right flank and receives the ball with plenty of room to run into. He takes it to the byeline but is closed down by Mexes. The Frenchman's brilliant covering is rewarded as the last touch comes of the Sampdoria player and a goal kick is awarded.
PENALTY CLAIM FOR SAMPDORIA! Icardi looks to be set through by on goal but is brought down from behind by Flamini. The referee is completely sure though and simply waves play on. It certainly would have been a harsh one.
Sampdoria's bright start to the game seems to have fizzled out now and Milan are beginning to have more of a say over proceedings. It could well be one of those games where you get severely punished for not making that possession count.
Poli again with some impressive play down that left side, refusing to give up on the ball and eventually winning a corner off of De Sciglio. The resultant delivery is a good one and it bounces around in the area without a blue shirt managing to get a forceful shot at goal.
Well over from Bojan! The forward receives a loose ball at the top of the box and does well to stay cool and shift it past Obiang. However, when striking it he lacks that same composure and sends a wild effort at the crowd behind the goal.
A great one-two between De Sciglio and Bojan gives the right-back space to whip in a cross. Again, he fails to find a team-mate and his deep ball into the box runs out for a throw in.
An early substitution for Milan as Ambrosini is replaced by Flamini. The former is surrounded by staff as he sits down on the dugout so it looks like he may have picked up a knock.
The Rossoneri fail to punish their hosts after Krsticic is caught in possession inside his own half. Niang gets the ball and runs it forward but he fails to pick an option. As he slows down, the attack loses momentum and Allegri's men fail to test the keeper.
That is probably the most threatening move Milan have made all game. A quick exchange of passes puts Montolivo in behind the defence on the right side but his shot is deflected behind for a corner.
Former Inter player Poli is seeing a lot of the ball this half, primarily on the left side. He sends a lofted cross into the area but Constant somehow turns it behind for a corner with his chest almost on the ground.
Good run from Icardi as he finds the space between Zapata and Mexes to get a run on Costa's cross. He gets a small nudge from the Frenchman and that looks to be enough to stop the Argentine from diverting his header on target.
De Sciglio pushes on from right-back for the first time this evening but his cross is poor and does not beat the first man. He starts ahead of Ignazio Abate today who has been linked with a move to Zenit in the past week.
Conversely, Milan's front three are yet to really get involved in the game. They get a chance to counter and move forward but Boateng plays an absolute shocker of a pass straight to a blue shirt.
Milan's positive early start has dissipated now and Sampdoria are in control. The hosts are pushing up and looking to get the ball in to their front two, who are proving dangerous. Chances of another upset on the cards? Let me know your thoughts in the chat box on the Live Match Centre!
THIRD IMPRESSIVE SAVE FROM ABBIATI! Once again it is Eder who provides the danger, this time from a set piece. He slams the ball at goal from a central position but the Milan custodian shows strong hands to palm the ball behind.
Powerful running from Obiang as he charges forward from deep, exchanges passes with a team-mate, and then keeps going. He slows as he reaches the edge of the area but is brought down by Constant. Free kick in a dangerous area here.
ANOTHER SAVE FROM ABBIATI! Eder is given far too much space on the edge of the box and turns to face goal before shifting the ball out of his feet. He looks to bend a shot into the far corner but the keeper scrambles across and turns it over the bar.
Good save from Abbiati! A low 20-yard strike from De Silvestri looks to be heading for the far corner but the keeper gets down, low to his right, and parries the ball off to the side. The hosts starting to look threatening.
There is a raucous atmosphere in Genoa with the crowd really making themselves heard. At the moment though Milan look to be having the better start, enjoying a lot more of the ball.
Milan settle on the ball straight away but Sampdoria do well to close the space and win possession back. Eder latches onto a flick and tries to hold off Zapata at the top of the box. The Brazilian drops to the floor and claims a foul but the referee is having none of it.
We are under way in Genoa! Milan kicking from right to left in their traditional red-and-black stripes.
The teams are making their way out on to the pitch and kick off is just a few moments away.
Furthermore, Milan have not won on their last four league visits to Sampdoria. Tonight's hosts also got their season off to a great start with a 1-0 win over the Diavolo on the opening day of the season. This could well be a close game.
Despite Sampdoria's league position, this could well be a difficult task for the Rossoneri. They have been prolific on the road recently, scoring at least two goals in their last six away games. However, five of those fixtures they have also conceded a pair or strikes or more. All signs point towards goals!
Delio Rossi, makes just one alteration from the team that defeated Juventus as the suspended Berardi is replaced on the right by De Silvestri.
Milan (4-3-3): Abbiati; De Sciglio, Zapata, Mexes, Cosntant; Boateng, Montolivo, Ambrosini; Niang, Bojan, El Shaarawy.
Sampdoria (3-5-2): Romero; Costa, Palombo, Gastadello; De Silvestri, Krsticic, Poli, Obiang, Estigarribia; Eder, Icardi.
The teams are in and there are a number of changes for Milan, only one of which is enforced due to suspension. But we will begin with the hosts...
A big game for both of these sides tonight. Milan are in need of a win to get back in the hunt for a European spot, while Sampdoria will be eager to build upon their latest win and move further away from the relegation zone.
Hello and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE text commentary on tonight's Serie A clash between Sampdoria on Milan. The hosts come into the game off the back of a surprise win over league leaders Juventus, while the Bianconeri inflicted defeat on Massimiliano Allegri's men in the Coppa Italia in midweek. My name is Tom Webber and I will be guiding you through the action this evening.
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