Zlatan Ibrahimovic could feature for AC Milan for the first time in seven weeks when the Serie A table-toppers host Torino on Saturday.
Ibrahimovic suffered a hamstring strain after netting a brace in a 3-1 win at Napoli on November 22, before a calf injury in training last month further delayed his return.
Milan coach Stefano Pioli told reporters on Friday that he did not expect the former Sweden international to return but he was listed in a 24-man squad published on Milan's website on the day of the game.
What's been said?
“He has done his programme, he has done some work, but I don’t think he will be available tomorrow," said Pioli at his pre-match press conference on Friday.
“We will have to grit our teeth, if two more injuries were to be added, we would have many absentees.
“We must resist, we must do well. If there were seven, eight, nine players missing, it would be normal to face difficulty. But the players will soon return and we can increase the rotations.”
Why does it matter?
The 39-year-old produced scintillating early-season form, scoring 10 goals in six top-flight matches following a bout of coronavirus to establish Pioli's side as the pacesetters in the Scudetto race.
However, the Rossoneri's lead at the Serie A summit is down to a point after they suffered a first league defeat of the season at home to Juventus in midweek - the reigning champions running out 3-1 winners as Federico Chiesa scored twice.
How have Milan performed with & without Zlatan?
Milan's form without Ibrahimovic this season has held up very well, with a 70 per cent win ratio in the matches without him edging 66.7% from four wins and two draws with him on the field in Serie A.
However, Pioli's men average slightly more goals (2.3 to 2.1), shots (17 to 15.6) and crosses (12.8 to 11.2) per 90 minutes with Ibrahimovic as their attacking spearhead.
What is the Milan squad to face Torino?
Goalkeepers: A Donnarumma, G Donnarumma, Tatarusanu.
Defenders: Calabria, Conti, Dalot, Duarte, Hernandez, Kalulu, Kjaer, Musacchio, Romagnoli.
Midfielders: Calhanoglu, Castillejo, Diaz, Frigerio, Hauge, Kessie, Olzer, Tonali.
Forwards: Colombo, Ibrahimovic, Leao, Maldini.