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Mexico - Apertura
World Cup 2014
October 30, 2012
• 3:45 PM
• Stadio Renzo Barbera, Palermo
Referee: N. Rizzoli
• Attendance: 18000
F. Miccoli 45'+
F. Brienza 47'
R. Montolivo 69'
S. El Shaarawy 80'
And that's my cue, thanks for joining us on Goal.com, till next time!
2-2 the final score. A fair result in the end, but in all honesty, it may feel like two points lost for both sides. Palermo, so superior for the best part of an hour, will be cursing their inability to hold on to a two goal lead. Milan meanwhile will be disappointed that they could not add a third goal, with their attack simply overwhelming in the latter stages of the game. The result does little to help both side's advance up the standings.
90' + 5'
And Palermo hang on or the draw, as the referee blows for full time!
90' + 4'
Last minute of added time as Palermo win a vital time wasting free kick. Tension all around the stadium.
90' + 3'
Mexes with a good ball into the feet of Pazzini, but the attention of two Palermo defenders prevents him from turning into space, and he is dispossessed.
90' + 2'
Ilicic has won a free kick against Constant, a welcome sight for Palermo who have been waiting for the final whistle for some time now.
90' + 1'
We are into the first of four minutes of added time...
Bojan with another great pivot in the middle of the park, freeing him for a shot from 20 yards out. But after opening up the space for himself, his shot lacks a bit of purchase, and is saved by Ujkani.
A point seems to be a fair result, as Palermo's superiority in the first half was matched by Milan after the interval. Is there a winner to be found here in Sicily?
Yellow CardPhilippe Mexes
Mexes goes into the referee's notebook for a 50-50 challenge on Miccoli. Bit harsh, that.
A good challenge by Mexes on Rios gives Emanuelson the chance to sprint forward on the break. With Bojan in the centre, Emanuelson instead elects to go for the shot, but it is blocked!
As we head into the final stretch, remember to reach me with any last thoughts on Twitter @keeghann.
Milan are playing some breathtaking stuff at the moment! A lovely counterattack sees Emanuelson feed Bojan on the overlap down the left, and the former Barca man squares to El Shaarawy at the near post, but Munoz makes a clutch challenge!
Miccoli immediately has a chance to restore Palermo's advantage, but after skipping away from his marker, fires directly at Amelia! The Italian forward, after so much activity in the first half, seems to have run out of gas.
GoalStephan El Shaarawy
MILAN ARE LEVEL!! And who else, but El Shaarawy! Montolivo plays a free-kick square to Abate, whose cross is punched clear by Ujkani, but EL Shaarawy pounces to drill home the loose ball for his seventh goal in ten games!
Nocerino has acres of space to advance in midfield, and tries to pick out the run of Pazzini, but Cetto steps in to make a crucial interception!
Giorgi keeping very close attention on Abate on the right. The wingback looked to have broken through during one moment, bu the substitute gets back well to intercept.
Yellow card for Cetto shortly after coming on, for a late challenge on Montolivo.
Yellow CardMauro Cetto
Allegri's gamble seems to be paying off handsomely. Milan look like they have another goal in them.
Miccoli suffering with a bit of cramp, but as Palermo have already made all three of their substitutions, he will have to soldier on. The physios are attending to him on the sidelines as the hosts temporarily go down to ten men.
MILAN HAVE ONE BACK! All credit must go to Bojan, who was excellent on the right flank to evade multiple defenders and spot the run of Montolivo into the area. The Italian fires in towards goal, it's deflected, but ends up in the back of the net! Game on!
How did El Shaarawy miss that? Abate does extremely well to motor down the right channel, and centre across the face of goal. El Shaarawy seems primed to tap in at the far post, but pressure from Morganella puts him off!
And as soon as I say that, Palermo execute a dangerous break, from which Morganella almost has a shot on goal from inside the area, but Montolivo gets back to make a crucial tackle!
For the first time in the match, Milan genuinely look like they could score. They are flowing forward in attack, and gaps are appearing that have not been there for most of the game.
The free kick is heading towards the top corner from Emanuelson, but Ujkani gets across his goal well to tip over!
Bojan has won a free kick against Garcia in midfield after getting the beating of the Palermo defender. It's been a very positive cameo from Bojan so far.
A much better game from Milan, who are dominating play at the moment after their attack minded substitutions. Palermo do have a two goal lead but have to be careful, as one goal will change the whole dynamic of this match.
Thoughts on the match? Reach me on Twitter @keeghann
Montolivo now is afforded a bit of room on the edge of the area bot could not replicate Bojan's feats, as Munoz is able to make the challenge. Good defending.
Yellow CardS. García
Almost a wonder goal from Bojan! He skips past three players on the edge of the area, and finds space at an angle to fire at Ujkani, who punches away! That was a flash to the wonderkid Bojan from Barca that seemed to have the world at his feet a few years ago.
And Milan's diminished defence is almost ruthlessly exploited by Palermo, as a run down the flanks from Miccoli finds Ilicic on the edge of the area, but his snap shot goes over!
Bojan is getting involved a lot early on in the attack, but not to any productive measure. They seem to almost be playing with two at the back in Mexes and Bonera, with Abate and Constant providing minimal support. Tactics of a desperate man, no doubt.
Double substitution from the beleaguered Milan coach: Pato and Yepes go off, Pazzini and Bojan come on. Milan now have nothing to lose.
As things stand, Palermo will move level with Milan on points. The axe is hovering ever closer to Allegri's head...
Where oh where do Milan go from here? They look absolutely clueless in all areas of the pitch. A two goal lead is exactly what Palermo deserve.
WHAT A HIT FROM BRIENZA! He collected the ball on the left, and had all the time in the world to line up his shot, which he drills into the bottom corner from 20 yards out! Amelia was rooted to the spot!
Here we go again! One change to report - Emanuelson coming on for the more defensive minded Flamini. Probably a good idea, since he was toying with a red card for much of the half.
Just when it looked like Palermo's attacking endeavor would not be rewarded, a slip-up by Abate on the cusp of stoppage time has allowed Miccoli to send them into a deserved lead from 12 yards out. Milan have a lot of work to do to get back into this game, as their threat has paled in comparison to the energetic hosts. Stay tuned for the second half.
45' + 2'
And that's it for the first half!
45' + 1'
Penalty GoalFabrizio Miccoli
MICCOLI SCORES! Great strike low to the left corner. Amelia guessed right, but such was the placement on the strike that he had no chance.
Palermo Penalty! Abate and Bonera are defending a Miccoli cross, and the ball strikes the hand of Abate, giving the referee no choice!
A good attack from Milan. Montolivo slips in Pato, who works the ball out to Abate on the channels. The wingback crosses to El Shaarawy at the far post, who gets his head on the ball, but Ujkani is there to stop low at his post!
Mexes does well to win the ball off Ilicic, but then undoes all his good work with a rushed long pass out of defence that finds neither Pato nor El Shaarawy, and goes out for a throw.
Pato is clearly a shadow of his former self. The Brazilian has time and space while advancing through the middle to take a shot, but dallies on the ball and rushes a tame punt towards goal at the end. Simply did not have the confidence to take one on from there.
An almighty scramble in the Milan box. Some good covering work from El Shaarawy prevents Morganella from having a clear run towards the byline. Yepes and Rios comes across and create a messy scrap for the ball, which eventually ends with a goalkick.
Flamini is lucky to still be on the pitch. The Frenchman led with a high foot in a challenge against Rios, and narrowly avoids doing some serious damage to his face with his studs. He's already on a yellow, major leniency from referee Nicola Rizzoli.
Free kick for Milan, from which Montolivo swings in a teasing delivery towards the six yard area. But a foul by Yepes chalks off the play.
Thoughts on how things have progressed? Reach me on Twitter @keeghann.
A fabulous free kick from Miccoli has flown just wide of the far post! The 33-year-old forward has come close a few times already, getting plenty of venom behind his strikes, but just lacking that crucial bit of accuracy.
And straight away Palermo break! Ilicic is primed to run in towards goal through the centre, but Flamini gets back and commits a tactical foul to prevent a one-on-one with Amelia, and takes his expected yellow card without complaint.
Yellow CardMathieu Flamini
El Shaarawy manufactures an inch of space against Garcia on the right, and drills in a cross that is caught by Ujkani. Some positive signs from the Rossoneri in the last few minutes.
Constant does well on the left wing, holding on to possession and firing in a good cross that forces Ujkani to punch clear. The rebound is worked to Nocerino at the edge of the box, but his shot, though strong, is fairly routine for the Albanian keeper.
Palermo have been far and away the better side, and are unlucky not to have scored. Their front three of Ilicic, Miccoli and Brienza is causing the Milan back three no end of trouble. In truth, they're unlucky not to be ahead.
Montolivo has adopted a deep lying playmaker role just in front of the defence, after originally penciled in as playing behind the strikers.
Horrible error from Constant, who plays a shot backpass under pressure from Ilicic. Miccoli pounces, on the edge of the box, but rips a thunderous drive inches over the bar!
Garcia gets his head on Miccoli's delivery, but sends it over the bar! Should have done better!
Yellow CardKevin Constant
Palermo break instantly, and Constant is booked for hacking down Brienza near the centre circle. Free kick to Palermo as they pile bodies forward...
From the resulting corner, Nocerino gets a touch centrally, but it's straight at Ujkani.
For one glorious second, Flamini had a clear sight on goal after being slipped in space by Nocerino. However, he took a second too long to hone his sights, and Garcia gets across to make a crucial block!
El Shaarawy has won Milan another corner kick after evading Morganella, but not Barreto. His kick is cleared by the defence though.
Thoughts on how the first 20 minutes have gone? Get in touch on Twitter @keeghann
A few mistakes in defence from Milan, who are just struggling to keep up at the moment. Palermo look much more dangerous than the Rossoneri whenever they attack.
And Miccoli has gone for it, it's hit with venom, and bounces out of the hands of Amelia before he can get a grip on it!
More space is appearing in the Milan midfield. Some good link up play between Morganella and Ilicic is halted by a Yepes handball. Freekick. which Miccoli has taken a particular interest in from 30 yards out...
In one instant, Ilicic turns away from Constant and feeds Miccoli on the run towards goal. The striker has the beating of last defender Bonera for pace, but, running towards the right, drags his shot wide of the far post!
El Shaarawy down after some heavy attention from Barreta. The youngster is down on the deck writhing in agony, much to the displeasure of the Palermo fans, who rain whistles down on him.
Very even start between the two sides to start the match. Milan have a promising counter, led by El Shaarawy, who feeds Pato out wide, but for the second time this evening, Milan are caught offside on the left flank.
A snap shot from Miccoli flies well over the bar. He did not have a lot of time to hone his sights.
Back to back action! First, Miccoli takes too heavy a touch inside the area and goes down easily under pressure from Constant - no penalty. Milan attack immediately, and Pato, for one second, looks to have a clean run on goal, but is checked by Munoz.
Palermo are doing a good job of keeping the ball moving in the Milan half. There is some good combination play occurring with their front three.
Steve von Bergen
On comes Steve Von Bergen for Donati who is shaking his head as he goes off. Suspicions that he may not have even been fit enough to start the match.
Donati seems to be struggling early here. Pato has just breezed past him with consummate ease, but Munoz comes across to cover. Gasperini is readying a substitute...
Thoughts, comments or wisecracks on the match? Hit me up on Twitter @keeghann.
Yellow CardDaniele Bonera
A bumbling run from Constant is fortuitously deflected into the path of El Shaarawy, who has a clean run towards goal, but has strayed inches offside.
Early yellow card for Bonera, who strides across Miccoli and cuts him down.
And here we go!
The teams are making their way put to the pitch, the lineups are being read out to the crowd.
Milan have been the very definition of mediocrity this season. From their opening nine league matches, they have picked up 10 points, with 10 goals scored, and 10 goals conceded. And they sit one point off of 10th place.
Milan's troubles are well documented, not least for coach Massimiliano Allegri, who must surely be taking things one day at a time. The threat of the sack looms ever larger after every poor result.
Palermo are languishing in 18th place as things stand, and have scored in only three of their seven games this season. Their last three league games have been drawn, and in their four home matches this campaign, they have picked up only one win.
AC MILAN (4-3-1-2): Amelia; Mexes, Bonera, Yepes, Abate; Flamini, Nocerino, Constant; Montolivo; Pato, El Shaarawy.
PALERMO (3-4-3): Ujkani; Von Bergen, Donati, Mantovani; Morganella, Rios, Barreto, Garcia; Ilicic, Giorgi; Miccoli.
Teams are in...
Greetings one and all, and welcome to Goal.com's live play-by-play for the Serie A clash between Palermo and AC Milan at Stadio Renzo Barbera! I'm Keeghann Sinanan, and I will be bringing you all the action throughout the match.
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