Udinese - AC Milan Preview: Allegri in last-chance saloon against winless Zebrette
The Rossoneri boss will be looking to silence the boo-boys on Sunday, when they will visit a side suffering similar woes, having failed to register a victory this season
By Alex Mott
Benatia, Danilo, Domizzi
Basta, Pereyra, Pinzi, Willians, Armero
Barreto, Di Natale
Abate, Bonera, Mexes, Antonini
Nocerino, Montolivo, De Jong
Pazzini, El Shaarawy
Udinese should make three changes from the side that drew 2-2 with Siena last weekend.
Andrea Lazzari is the only absentee, after his red card at Stadio Artemio Franchi, and so should be replaced by Pablo Armero out on the left.
Elsewhere, Roberto Pereyra returns and looks likely to slot into midfield at the expense of Giovanni Pasquale, alongside Willians who comes in for Allan.
Otherwise, it will probably be an unchanged starting XI for Francesco Guidolin's side. Daniele Padelli is between the sticks, marshalling Mehdi Benetia, Danilo and Maurizio Domizzi.
Giampiero Pinzi will lead the midfield, with goalscorer Antonio Di Natale leading the line.
For AC Milan, they also should make three changes following a shock 1-0 home defeat to Atalanta last Saturday.
Philippe Mexes returns and could replace Francesco Acerbi at centre-back. In midfield, summer signing Riccardo Montolivo will come in for Massimo Ambrosini, while Antonio Nocerino replaces Urby Emanuelson.
Nigel De Jong keeps his place in front of the back four, while Kevin-Prince Boateng will be tasked with feeding Stephan El Shaarawy and Giampaolo Pazzini in attack.
|DID YOU KNOW?
- AC Milan have made their worst start to a Serie A campaign for 80 years - losing two and winning one of their first three games.
- Kevin-Prince Boateng (pictured right) is the player in the Italian top flight who has attempted the most shots so far (13) without scoring.
- The corresponding fixture last season finished Udinese 1-2 AC Milan. Stephan El Shaarawy and Maxi Lopez scored for the Rossoneri.
- Udinese have also made an unexpectedly poor start to the season - losing two and drawing one of their first three games.
- Zebrette forward Maicousel scored with his first-ever touch in calcio on matchday one against Fiorentina.
|Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|Sign up with bet365 for a free bet up to £200|
|Sign up to Paddy Power for £250 in free bets|
Top 3 Predictions
Udinese 0-2 AC Milan
- 16.16 %
Udinese 1-2 AC Milan
- 14.08 %
Udinese 2-1 AC Milan
- 10.57 %
|Italy - Serie A (ITA1)||Mar 8, 2014||Udinese 1 - AC Milan 0|
|Italy - Coppa Italia (ITAC)||Jan 22, 2014||AC Milan 1 - Udinese 2|
|Italy - Serie A (ITA1)||Oct 19, 2013||AC Milan 1 - Udinese 0|
|Italy - Serie A (ITA1)||Feb 3, 2013||AC Milan 2 - Udinese 1|
|Italy - Serie A (ITA1)||Sep 23, 2012||Udinese 2 - AC Milan 1|
|Mar 8, 2014||Udinese 1 - AC Milan 0||ITA1|
|Mar 2, 2014||Cagliari 3 - Udinese 0||ITA1|
|Feb 23, 2014||Udinese 1 - Atalanta 1||ITA1|
|Feb 16, 2014||Genoa 3 - Udinese 3||ITA1|
|Feb 11, 2014||Fiorentina 2 - Udinese 0||ITAC|
|10||Antonio Di Natale||Striker|
|10||Paulo Vitor Barreto||Striker|
|92||Stephan El Shaarawy||Striker|
|2||Mattia De Sciglio||Defender|
|34||Nigel De Jong||Midfielder|
|Antonio Di Natale|
The 34-year-old is simply put: the best finisher in Italy. Despite his age, he can still cause defenders all sorts of problems, and will inevitably rise to the occasion here.
|Stephan El Shaarawy|
In contrast to Di Natale, the 19-year-old is the future of Italian football. His skill, pace, verve and cunning should get the better of Udinese's three-man defence on Sunday, and I expect him to score, or if not, be involved in Milan's key moments at Stadio Friuli.
Despite AC Milan's dreadful start to the season, expect them to get a result at Stadio Friuli. The burden of playing in front of a home crowd is lifted here, and with Stephan El Shaarawy expect to start, the Rossoneri will have some much needed invention in the final third.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed