AC Milan were given something of a scare as they travelled to take on Hellas Verona on Sunday evening, but were able to leave the Stadio Marc’Antonio Bentegodi with a 2-1 victory on Matchday 10 of Serie A.
The Rossoneri took the lead through an own goal from Gialloblu captain Miguel Veloso, but the hosts equalised minutes when Koray Gunter’s cross inadvertently became a shot, and the ball went into the net with the aid of a deflection from Milan defender Matteo Gabbia.
Despite the pressure from Verona to earn a shock lead, it was the Rossoneri who won it thanks to Sandro Tonali less than 10 minutes from time. Tonali was Milan’s hero against Verona last season as well.
The win takes AC Milan to third in the Serie A table with 23 points while the Veronese remain in 18th spot with just one win so far.
Verona pose problems for Milan
A change was made during the week in Verona as Salvatore Bocchetti replaced Gabriele Cioffi as coach, and he immediately transformed the team, implementing pressing tactics that broke any rhythm that Milan tried to get into.
The reigning Serie A champions took the lead after nine minutes after Rafael Leao dribbled into the penalty area, beat a defender, and produced a low cross that was diverted into the net by Veloso.
Hellas Verona were leaving gaps in the defence early on, which allowed AC Milan to provide a threat on the counter-attack. In truth, the Rossoneri could have been leading by more, but Olivier Giroud wasted two good chances to score.
The Gialloblu were determined to put pressure on Milan, and they got an equaliser in the 19th minute, when Gunter produced a low cross from the left-wing and the ball was deflected off Gabbia. This gave Verona greater confidence when attacking and they kept on creating chances to take the lead but they were not able to beat Ciprian Tatarusanu in the Milan goal.
Tonali proves Milan’s hero in Verona… again!
Stefano Pioli was not happy with what he saw in the first half, prompting him to bring on Ante Rebic and Divock Origi. Aside from an early chance falling to the Croatian forward, the changes did not bring the desired effect immediately and it was Verona who looked more likely to score.
Arguably the best chance for the Gialloblu fell to Roberto Piccoli, who was brought on for the injured Ajdin Hrustic, and his header hit the crossbar. AC Milan were still able to creat chances of their own, and they did regain the lead on 81 minutes when they launched a counter-attack and a low cross from Rebic was side-footed into the net by Tonali.
This did not dampen Verona’s spirits though and they surged forward for an equaliser but it was to no avail.