AC Milan off for a strong start

AC Milan off for a strong start

AC Milan is looking to start strong by winning against Newcastle United, as they inch closer to their aims of winning another Champions League title. This is the 20th time that Milan qualified for the Champions League, where they were able to win seven titles. Last season, Milan were able to reach the semi-finals of the contest, but a 0-3 loss against Inter eliminated them. Moreover, this is also their third straight qualification in the Champions League, which may work for their advantage. As for Newcastle, when it comes to the Champions League, they are not that familiar, as it has been almost two decades since they last entered. Newcastle last entered the Champions League during the 2003-04 season of the Champions League. These two teams kick-off their campaign on September 20, 2023, at 12:45 AM (GMT+8), with Milan as hosts.

AC Milan

Champions League: AC Milan
Photo courtesy of AP Photo

Milan is now ready to take revenge following their unfortunate exit last season against their arch-rivals, Inter Milan. It was a 0-3 loss on aggregate that eliminated them, without even scoring a single goal. Moreover, they do not have a confidence coming into this match, as they are from a 5-1 loss against Inter on their last match. On that match, it was Rafael Leao who scored the consolation goal for Milan. In fact, before that loss, they are in a perfect run in the Serie A, and it is just unfortunate that they were not able to retain that record. Fortunately, they have a good record in the Champions League whenever they play at home. In fact, they won three of their last four home games in the Champions League, where they scored a clean sheets in those wins.

Pierre Kalulu remains to be unavailable here due to a concern in the thigh, which may keep him out for a few weeks. Ismael Bennacer on the other hand is also out, as he have yet to recover from his knee surgery. Meanwhile, Fikayo Tomori will be serving his suspension here, making him unavailable in this match.

Newcastle United

Champions League: Newcastle United
Photo courtesy of Reuters

Newcastle on the other hand is a team who qualified in the Champions League for the first time in 21 years. They last entered the contest during the 2003-04 season of the contest, which makes them eager to have a strong start in the contest. Moreover, Newcastle has a renewed confidence coming into this game, as they are from a narrow win domestically. After three consecutive losses in the Premier League, Newcastle finally earned a narrow 1-0 win against Brentford. It was Callum Wilson who scored for Newcastle, where he successfully made a second-half penalty kick. When it comes to their participation in Europe, they last reached the European stage during the 2012-13 season. On that campaign, they were able to reach the quarterfinals. However, they are not doing well when it comes to their away matches this season, suffering losses in their two away games.

Joe Willock, Emil Krafth, and Joelinton, are all unavailable coming into this match due to their own injuries. Meanwhile, Matt Ritchie, Mark Gillespie, and Javier Manquillo are all left out for the Newcastle squad in the Champions League.

Prediction:

AC Milan (2.5)
Odds: -0.88

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