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It had been thought that Rossoneri boss Massimiliano Allegri might rest the Italy international, who has only just working his way back to full fitness after six months out

Antonio Cassano continues up front for AC Milan in Wednesday night's must-win Serie A clash with Atalanta.

It had been speculated that the Italy international, who made his first start against Siena at the weekend after six months out of action following an emergency heart procedure, might be left on the bench for the game at San Siro.

However, Cassano has again been paired with Zlatan Ibrahimovic in the Rossoneri attack after a scintillating display at the Artemio Franchi.

There are, though, six changes to the side which defeated Siena 4-1 on Sunday, with coach Massimiliano Allegri opting to field an entirely different back four.

Alessandro Nesta and Philippe Mexes return at the heart of the Milan defence in place of Mario Yepes and Daniele Bonera, while Mattia De Sciglio takes over at right-back from Ignazio Abate and Luca Antonini replaces Djamel Mesbah on the opposite flank.

In midfielder, meanwhile, Mark van Bommel and Gennaro Gattuso make way for Massimo Ambrosini and Antonio Nocerino.

The game has come too soon for Thiago Silva, Clarence Seedorf and Urby Emanuelson but all three are expected to be available for this weekend's Milan derby against Inter.

As for the visitors, they are buoyed by the return from suspension of defender Guglielmo Stendardo and midfielder Luca Cigarini, while Simone Tiribocchi has been recalled to partner German Denis in attack. Ezequiel Schelotto has been surprisingly dropped to the bench.

AC Milan (4-3-1-2): Abbiati; De Sciglio, Nesta, Mexes, Antonini; Nocerino, Ambrosini, Muntari; Boateng; Ibrahimovic, Cassano.

Subs: Amelia, Yepes, Mesbah, Gattuso, Aquilani, Robinho, Maxi Lopez.

Atalanta (4-4-2): Consigli; Ferri, Stendardo, Lucchini, Peluso; Raimondi, Cigarini, Cazzola, Bonaventura; Denis, Tiribocchi.

Subs: Frezzolini, Manfredini, Bellini, Schelotto, Carrozza, Moralez, Gabbiadini.


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