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Jan 13, 2022 at 8pm UK
AC MilanAC Milan
Giroud (74'), Leao (102'), Saelemaekers (112')
Tonali (42'), Saelemaekers (115')
Skiri Oestigaard (17')
Badelj (37'), Yeboah (47'), Skiri Oestigaard (53'), Hefti (64')

Preview: AC Milan vs. Genoa - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: AC Milan vs. Genoa - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Thursday's Coppa Italia clash between AC Milan and Genoa, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

AC Milan will be looking to claim their fourth successive victory across all competitions when they welcome Genoa to San Siro for their last-16 clash in the Coppa Italia on Thursday night.

Meanwhile, the visitors – who have beaten Perugia and Salernitana to reach this stage of the competition – will be hoping to progress to the quarter-finals for the first time in 30 years.

Match preview

Stefano Pioli celebrated his 400th Serie A game as a manager when AC Milan comfortably beat Venezia 3-0 away from home on Sunday, to claim their first victory in 2022.

It took less than two minutes for Zlatan Ibrahimovic to open the scoring, netting his eighth league goal of the campaign, before a second-half brace from Theo Hernandez secured all three points for the Rossoneri.

Milan now sit just one point behind city rivals and league leaders Inter Milan, who have played a game less, and they are on course to qualify for the Champions League as there is a 10-point gap between themselves in second and Juventus in fifth place.

Pioli's men now head into their Coppa Italia encounter having progressed from the last 16 in each of the previous 12 seasons; however, they have not lifted the trophy since the 2002-03 campaign, a 19-year drought which the Rossoneri hierarchy will be keen to end.

Milan, who are unbeaten in nine of their last 10 meetings with Genoa, should be confident of beating their relegation-threatened counterparts on Thursday, considering they cruised to a 3-0 victory against them in the league just six weeks ago.

Genoa's struggles in Serie A continued over the weekend as they suffered a narrow 1-0 home defeat to relegation rivals Spezia.

Simone Bastoni's strike in the 14th minute was enough to condemn the hosts to their 11th league defeat of the campaign and sees them sitting five points adrift from safety.

Genoa's only victory in their last 19 matches across all competitions was in the second round of the Coppa Italia against Serie A basement club Salernitana, who they beat 1-0 in December.

Head coach Andriy Shevchenko is facing an uphill battle to turn the club's fortunes around, and while a potential cup run will not be considered as one of his priorities, a return to winning ways is high on the agenda so a positive result in midweek can only help the Liguria-based outfit going forward.

Shevchenko will return to familiar territory on Thursday as he spent eight successful years across two spells with Milan as a player, scoring 175 goals, winning five major trophies and also claiming the 2004 Ballon d'Or.

The Rosseblu head into their midweek tie having failed to reach the round of 16 of the Coppa Italia in each the last 13 seasons; the last time they reached the quarter-final was back in 1991-92 when they came out on top against Pisa.

Genoa have fared better away from home so far this term, claiming eight of their 12 Serie A points on the road with five draws and a win. However, success in the cup on Thursday is unlikely against an in-form Milan outfit, who they have only beaten twice in their last 19 visits to San Siro.

AC Milan form (all competitions):
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • W

Genoa Coppa Italia form:
  • W
  • W

Genoa form (all competitions):
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • D
  • L

Team News

Milan quintet Fikayo Tomori, Alessio Romagnoli, Samu Castillejo, Davide Calabria and Ciprian Tatarusanu were all absent last weekend after testing positive for coronavirus and all five are doubtful for Thursday's clash.

Simon Kjaer is ruled out for the rest of the season with an ACL injury, while Franck Kessie, Ismael Bennacer and Fode Ballo-Toure are all away on international duty with their respective countries at the Africa Cup of Nations.

With Milan short of options at centre-back, Matteo Gabbia and Pierre Kalulu are expected to continue in the first XI, with full-back Alessandro Florenzi and Hernandez also set to retain their positions in the back four.

Ibrahimovic can rest his 40-year-old legs for this encounter as he is suspended, with Olivier Giroud the most likely contender to start up front.

As for Genoa, Laurens Serpe is set to remain in isolation after testing positive for COVID-19, while Nikola Maksimovic, who has been out with a muscle injury since October, is to remain on the sidelines.

Club captain Domenico Criscito is also expected to miss out as he has only just finished his self-isolation period after testing positive for COVID-19, but the return of midfielder Nicolo Rovella, who came off the bench last weekend, will provide a much-needed boost for the visitors, with the Italian in contention to start at San Siro.

Experienced strikers Goran Pandev and Felipe Caicedo will be hoping to force their way into the first XI ahead of first-choice attackers Mattia Destro and Caleb Ekuban.

AC Milan possible starting lineup:
Maignan; Florenzi, Kalulu, Gabbia, Hernandez; Bakayoko, Krunic; Messias, Maldini, Leao; Giroud

Genoa possible starting lineup:
Sirigu; Vanheusden, Bani, Ostigard; Ghiglione, Sturaro, Badelj, Rovella, Cambiaso; Caicedo, Pandev

We say: AC Milan 2-0 Genoa

Even though Genoa will be desperate to put an end to their miserable winless run, everything points towards a routine victory for Milan on Thursday.

The hosts will without a few key players but Pioli is set to name a side strong enough to get the job done at San Siro.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a home win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home Win:data

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