AC Milan take on the visitors Arsenal at “San Siro” in the first-leg fight of the 1/8 final stage of the UEFA Europa League. The game will be played in Milan on Thursday, March 8th.
AC Milan please their supporters with the great performance recently. Last week the club promoted to the final of the Coppa Italia, having beaten Lazio by the penalty shoot-outs. Things started to change for good in the Italian Serie A as well. Besides, in this calendar year Gennaro Gattuso’s side has got five triumphs, single draw and not a single loss in six encounters played within the Serie A, having beaten AS Roma, Sampdoria and Lazio. On the previous stage of the UEFA Europa League “I Rossoneri” had no difficulties in defeating Ludogorets, having won both tackles with 4:0 aggregated score. With all the competitions counted, AC Milan haven’t tasted any failure across 13 consecutive fights already which hasn’t happened for quite a long time already. Nevertheless, this isn’t surprising as there are many top class performers in the clubs roster and all they needed was just time to find their game. One shouldn’t forget that AC Milan are a club with long and great history which has numerous fans, thus, “I Rossoneri’ cannot afford to be a mid-table side.
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On the contrary, Arsenal is in a deep crisis now. It all started with 1:0 defeat from Tottenham with furthermore lowered the team’s chances to get into top-four. Afterwards “The Gunners” thrash Ostersunds 3:0 on the road on the 1/16 final stage of the UEFA Europa League and it looked like the second-leg match had to be simply a formality. However, the English club promoted further in the competition with significant worries. Some explained this with the team’s preparation to the Carabao Cup final where it was thrashed by Manchester City 0:3. In few days Arsenal were beaten again by Manchester City, but this time at their own turf with the same 3:0 scoreline. And the last disappointment was 2:1 defeat gained from Brighton in the latest clash of the English Premier League. Thus, “The Gunners” have lost five out of six recent fights, having earned only one victory over Swedish Ostersunds. In addition, Arsenal look remarkably weak on the road as they have recorded only three triumphs and eight losses in 15 away tackles within the Premier League.
This is probable the most interesting pair of the 1/8 final stage of the UEFA Europa League. Both clubs have practically no chances to qualify to the next season’s UEFA Champions League through the inner tournaments. Thus, all their hopes are for the UEFA Europa League where they will fight till the last.
Taking into account that AC Milan had some time to recover and prepare for the forthcoming head-to-head of the UEFA Europa League as their latest battle within the Serie A was postponed and they are on a good pace now while Arsenal are far away from their best shape, I would give an advantage to the upcoming hosts.
Prediction for the match: AC Milan to win with 0.0 Asian handicap.