AC Milan secure Champions League spot: Their season in numbers
AC Milan have secured their UEFA Champions League berth for the upcoming season after they defeated Juventus 1-0 in Serie A. A solitary goal from their veteran striker Olivier Giroud was enough to see the Rossoneri triumph over the Bianconeri. Milan are currently in the fourth position in the league standings with another game to go in this particular season. Here's more.
How did the match pan out?
It was a cagey first half, with both teams having some chances until Giroud headed Milan into the lead in the 40th minute. A cross from Davide Calabria found the Frenchman in the box, who lost his marker and thumped it past Wojciech Szczesny. Late in the game, Danilo's volley from a corner was cleared by Milan defender Pierre Kalulu right off the line.
A season of missed opportunities for Milan
Last season's league champions, Milan had a bright start to the season, but as the season progressed, they lost their mojo in important games. They bowed out of the UCL after losing to rivals Inter in the semi-finals. They lost to Torino in the R16 in Copa Italia. They were thrashed by Inter in the Supercoppa Italiana. Milan are momentarily fourth in Serie A.
Milan's double over Juventus
Milan completed the double over Juventus this season with this 1-0 win in the Serie A. As per Opta, this is the third time the Rossoneri have completed the double over Juve in the last 50 years. They completed the double over the Bianconeri back in the 1990-91 season and also in the 2009-10 season. Earlier this season, Milan defeated Juventus 2-0.
Milan scripted this unique record against Juventus
As mentioned, Milan have completed the double over Juventus in Serie A this season. However, the Rossoneri have kept a clean sheet in their last three consecutive meetings against Juve. This has happened for the second time in Milan's illustrious history after a period between 1988 to 1989 when the Rossoneri kept four consecutive clean sheets against the Old Lady.
Giroud scripted this record
Giroud slammed home the only goal in the game, which was enough to separate the two teams. This was his 12th goal in the 2022-23 season in Serie A. As per Opta, he has scored 12 goals for the first time in a season in a top five European leagues since the 2016-17 season. He netted 12 goals then for Arsenal.
Who are the key performers for Milan this season?
Rafael Leao is the star for Milan upfront with 13 goals and eight assists in the Serie A. He has also created 15 big chances this season, the most in the league. Giroud isn't far behind with 12 goals and five assists. Sandro Tonali averages 1.9 chances per game, besides providing seven assists and two goals. Davide Calabria averages 2.5 successful tackles per match.
Milan are fourth in the Serie A standings
AC Milan are in the fourth position in the league standings this season. They have accumulated 67 points from 37 matches. Fifth-placed Atalanta have to settle for Europa League as they mustered 61 points with one game to go. Napoli have won the title with 87 points, followed by Lazio with 71 points. Inter are just two points above Milan in third spot.