What to expect from AC Milan in their next game in the Champions League
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In European club soccer, winning a trophy in the continent’s toughest tournaments is what fans want to see more than anything. Domestic success is, of course, celebrated enthusiastically, but being able to beat the best teams in Europe is considered a far greater achievement than the teams from the same country you play in, week in week out. This is partly due to the novelty of playing these teams, as two top sides might only face off against each other in the Champions League once every five, ten, or even twenty years.
Winning European trophies is also used as a method to judge just how great a team really is. Take Paris Saint Germain for example. They have been the dominant side in Ligue 1 (the top league in France) for many years, winning seven titles out of the last nine. They have also excelled in the domestic cups, winning the Coupe de France six times in the last decade, as well as the Coupe de la Ligue six times in the same period.
However, despite this dominance, they have continually fallen short in the Champions League, the tournament the fans would love to see them win more than any. They have made it to the final once, in 2020, but were beaten by Bayern Munich. So, for all their domestic strength, they haven’t made it count at the top stage, and because of that, they won’t be considered a truly great European side until they do.
AC Milan is an interesting example. Historically, they certainly are considered to be one of Europe’s most illustrious teams. They have won the European Cup/Champions League on seven occasions, with only Real Madrid have lifted the famous trophy more than the Rossoneri. Milan last won it in 2007, where they overturned Liverpool 2-1. The victory was made all the sweeter as it was revenge for the final two years previously, where despite being 3-0 up, Milan conceded three second-half goals and ended up losing to Liverpool on penalties.
Milan has fallen away since ‘07 and had not qualified for the tournament since the 2013/14 season, which saw them knocked out in the Round of 16 to Atlético Madrid. Since then, they have either only played in the Europa League (very much a secondary tournament) or missed out entirely. Thankfully, their form has improved over the last few seasons, and this year sees them return to the Champions League for the first time in seven years.
Milan remains a popular side with fans of sports betting, who will scour their favourite online sports betting apps to find the best odds for each of their games in the Champions League. How will they fare in their next European tie? Let’s have a look at their form to find out.
Mixed fortunes so far
Domestically, Milan has started the season strongly. They won their opening three games, scoring seven while only conceding one. They then came up against Juventus, a side who have dominated the Italian league for the past decade. It was a close game, with Juve taking the lead early on. However, Milan managed to pull a goal back in the second half, and held out for an impressive 1-1 draw.
In the Champions League, they did not get off to the best of starts. They travelled to their old rivals Liverpool on matchday one and were on the end of a 3-2 defeat. To begin with, in this match, it looked like the young Milan side would be torn apart, as Liverpool scored and missed a penalty inside the opening twenty minutes. However, the Rossoneri recovered and pushed back, scoring two quick goals to go into half-time 2-1 up. They couldn’t hold on to their advantage, and goals by Mohamed Salah and Jordan Henderson meant they started their campaign off with a loss.
While the result wasn’t ideal, the performance was certainly positive, as Liverpool are a good side who are tough to beat at home. If Milan plays like that in their next Champions League game, they stand a good chance of getting a positive result.
Upcoming European fixtures
The next game sees Milan travel to Madrid, to take on Atlético. The Spanish side could only manage a draw in their first-round tie and have had a mixed start to their defence of the Spanish league title they won last season. On current form, Milan certainly appear to be the stronger team, so will be hoping to pick up some points at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium.
From there, their travel to Portugal to face Porto. Sérgio Conceição’s side has looked strong recently, winning 5-0 in their most recent fixture. If Milan want to progress to the knockout stages of this competition, it is the games against Porto that will prove crucial, so they really are must-wins.
We have a lot of Champions League action to look forward to this season, and hopefully, Milan will still be participating once the group stages are complete, when the real fun begins.
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