Milan Derby Prieveiw : Fighting for a Europe League place

Not too long ago Internazionale and AC Milan were regulars in the Champions League, but in the last few years their fans have had to endure much bleaker pickings.

This weekend’s Milan Serie A derby at the San Siro on Saturday sees both teams fighting for a place in the Europa League – Champions League qualification seemingly no longer a realistic goal.

The rivals last met in November, and the derby was Stefano Pioli’s first game in charge of Inter. Ivan Perisic’s injury time equaliser rescued them a point, and the game finished 2-2. Antonio Candreva fired in Inter’s first, and Suso bagged a brace for Milan.

With both looking towards the Europa League to be playing continental football next season, the derby takes on an added dimension this time around.

In Italy, the winner of the Coppa Italia is granted a Europa League place. However, this season’s final is between Juventus and Lazio, who both already hold European qualifying spots. This means that 6th place in Serie A will be granted a place in the Europa League next season, and it looks very likely that a Milan club will benefit from this.

The Milan derby, or the ‘Derby della madonnina’, has something extra special because both sides have their home fans supporting them. Both Milan sides call the San Siro their home. AC have had the stadium since it was built in 1926, and it has been shared since Inter relocated from the Arena Civica in 1947.

Both teams have some injuries concerns ahead of the game, which will be broadcast live on the World Football channel at 12:30 on Saturday. Giacomo Bonaventura and Ignazio Abate are long-term absentees for Milan. However, ordering valtrex online coach Vincenzo Montella is looking for a return of Riccardo Montolivo and Andrea Bertolacci.

His Inter counterpart will be without long-term injured goalkeeper Andrei Radu, while Roberto Gagliardini is still nursing an ankle injury.

Cole He Xin, Sports Director of StarTimes Media Division, said the game will be one not to miss: “I won’t pick a side to win here, it’s strange when they both have the home advantage! But I know the Milan derby will be a huge occasion, both teams really need the points in this late stage of the season.

“Both clubs are below where they’re used to being. They both have such a rich history, it will be interesting to see who can climb back first.”

Both Milan and Inter have enjoyed great success in Serie A, and sit level on 18 titles each. The only team to have won more is Juventus with a remarkable 32. In recent years, neither Milan side have been able to match Juventus, who’s five consecutive titles have made them the true modern powerhouse of Italian football.

When it comes to the derby, Inter have their nose slightly ahead, having won 61 out of 167 matches, with AC winning 53 and 53 ending in a draw.

Serie A schedule for this match is as follows:

  • April 15 at 12:30: Inter vs Milan on channel 245 (World Football)
  • April 15 at 15:00: Pescara vs Juventus on channel 240 (Sports Focus)
  • April 15 at 15:00: Roma vs Atalanta on channel 246 (Sports Premium)
  • April 15 at 18:00: Sassuolo vs Sampdoria on channel 246 (Sports Premium)
  • April 15 at 20:45: Napoli vs Udinese on channel 245 (World Football)