October 03, 2010 – 00:15 IST
Stadio Ennio Tardini, Parma
After struggling to a point at the Amsterdam Arena, AC Milan travel to Parma for their sixth match of the Serie A campaign. The scheduling of the matches has been very hectic for the Rossoneri and they will be keen to keep themselves motivated before they go on a long International break. Allegri will again need to make some important decisions before he fields eleven players at the Ennio Tardini.
The Milanello training ground saw Alexandre Pato warming up with the team. He is expected to play the game, though the chances of him starting are still slim. Common sense suggests that Allegri will rest Ibrahimovic, who has scored the bulk of Milan’s goals this season and is most likely to play for Sweden later on. The lanky Swede has been fighting against time to get fit for this fixture, and should perhaps be given some well-deserved rest.
However, Allegri may decide to play the striker due to the inability of the rest of the team to find the back of the net. Robinho has missed sitters in the previous two games and Pato is coming after an injury lay-off so the Diavolo could face some problems scoring.Ronaldinho was rested against Ajax and is most likely to start against Parma. He has been off colour so far and will be looking forward to this match to justify Berlusconi’s love for him.
To balance the fatigue of the team, Allegri may give a chance to some of the youngsters to show their potential. At the same time, this is a very crucial game and Milan have 3 points for the taking and would not like to miss out on grounds of being complacent.
Milan has clearly identified their prime target is to win the Scudetto this season. Big boss Adriano Galliani stated in a press conference that “Milan needs to win the league as it’s not an amusement park”. This comment is an indirect remark at the way Allegri is using his troops. With the line-up that Milan currently possess, the best Serie A manager for the past two seasons has not gone with the right tactics, due which the results have not shown the benefits of the Rossoneri’s transfer market splurge.
Parma, on the other hand, have had a dismal start to their campaign. The club is currently in 16th place on the table and in danger of entering the relegation zone already. They are coming from a 2-0 defeat to Fiorentina last week and to top it up they are without star players Alberto Paloschi and Sebastian Giovinco. The Crosiati will be relying on Antonio Candreva who is on loan from Udinese and could pose some problems for the Milan backline. Valerie Bojinov is another player that Milan would want to control as he was the one who scored the winner for Parma the last time these two sides met each other.
Milan would be making a huge mistake if they take this match lightly. If they win this, they have a realistic chance of closing in on Inter who have a potentially tougher match to handle against the Old Lady.
Milan’s possible starting line-up:
Abbiati, Abate, Nesta, Silva, Antonini, Boateng, Pirlo, Seedorf, Ronaldinho, Ibrahimovic, Robinho
Parma’s possible starting line-up:
Mirante, Zaccardo, Paci, Lucarelli, Antonelli, Morrone, Gobbi, Angelo, Candreva, Fernando Marqués, Hernán Crespo
TheHardTackle’s Blast from the Past:
TheHardTackle’s Player to watch out for:
RONALDINHO (AC Milan)
He was rested for the game against Ajax in mid-week. Always itching to perform well for his team, his eagerness was evident from the way he was training at the Milanello training centre. Off late, he has developed good chemistry with Pato and Seedorf and with all these player expected to start, R80 could create magic. With the skills that he possesses, Parma would need to mark him on the left side if they are to stop this man, and stand any chance of pulling off an upset.
TheHardTackle’s Prediction: Parma 0-2 AC Milan