The headline fixture in Serie A Matchday 9 sees Juventus travel east to face AC Milan at San Siro. Neither team are quite where they expected to be in Serie A at this stage of the season and a defeat here could be construed as the end of a Scudetto charge.
AC Milan have got some serious injury worries to contend with. They should be welcoming Theo Hernandez back to the squad after his injury but they will still be without Mike Maignan, Alexis Saelemaekers, Junior Messias and possibly Simon Kjaer too. Davide Calabria will also be out injured.
To prepare you for this vital game I’ve selected my top 3 Bet Builder Picks and a complementary Cheat Sheet.
Milan are sat in fifth place in the table coming into this game as they have only managed five wins out of their first eight games. They will want to assume their position at the top of the table as soon as possible as they have a great chance to defend their title given the league seems so open this season.
Juventus meanwhile, have had a mini upturn in form although the whole ecosystem around Massimiliano Allegri seems very fragile. They have won their last two games against Bologna and Maccabi Haifa 3-0 and 3-1 but a defeat against Milan would soon make the fans forget about those wins.
AC Milan v Juventus Bet Builder Tips
Rafael Leao to Score or Assist
It is impossible to not predict Rafael Leao making a meaningful attacking contribution for Milan. The Portuguese star was the Serie A MVP last season and he has come up with some fantastic moments already this season.
In Milan’s last Serie A game against Empoli, Leao wrapped up the points with the most incredibly nonchalant chipped finish at the end of the game. He even executed it with a smile on his face, such is his confidence whilst through on goal.
It is very easy to picture him getting the wrong side of a defender like Leonardo Bonucci who is losing his pace and getting a clear run through on goal. At that point, the goalkeeper is at the mercy of Leao as he has scored plenty of big goals in games at San Siro when his team really need him.
He was the one bright spark for Milan against Chelsea in the first half of the Champions League group game and he is likely to prove the same again. The return of Theo Hernandez to fitness also means that he will have a player on the left that he links up superbly with in an attacking sense.
That is a winning combination on the left for the Rossoneri and it could be what makes the difference on Saturday evening.
Ismael Bennacer to be Shown a Card
There is a very real chance for this to be quite a feisty affair with both sides trying to get an edge anywhere that they can. Professional fouls in the midfield could be the order of the day and that will lead to plenty of cards being handed out.
If there’s anyone who knows when to pull someone down in the midfield to stop a counter-attack, it’s Milan’s Ismael Bennacer. The Algerian midfielder has proved to be a superb buy for the Diavolo from Empoli. He is the centre of some seemingly very intense contract negotiations right now as they seek to keep him at the club.
Whilst he has only got one yellow card in Serie A so far this season, he had the second highest amount in the Milan squad last season as it is a large part of his remit to break up attacks.
With the way that Juventus play, he is likely to have players like Adrien Rabiot and Fabio Miretti trying to carry the ball forward before releasing someone like Dusan Vlahovic and Filip Kostic through on goal. The arching runs inside from Angel Di Maria will also be something for he and Sandro Tonali to contend with and he can’t get it right everytime.
It is the sort of game that has a lot riding on it and could be so tight that you could say Bennacer has not done his job properly if he hasn’t picked up a yellow card.
Dusan Vlahovic to Score Anytime
Much like the pick for Rafael Leao to score or assist, it is very hard not to back Dusan Vlahovic to find the back of the net.
The Serbian forward currently sits second in the Serie A scoring charts having scored five times in eight games. He is level with Lazio’s Ciro Immobile, Udinese’s Beto, and Napoli’s Khvicha Kvaratskhelia. Incidentally, it’s still Bologna’s Marko Arnautovic that is leading the way.
Dusan Vlahovic has already shown that he can score in the big games as he netted a superb free-kick earlier in the season against AS Roma. He scored in midweek against Maccabi Haifa and it was a template of goal that Juventus would like to see a lot more of.
Milan will likely be pressing forward more than Juventus as the home team and that means that the combination of Angel Di Maria playing a superb pass through to Vlahovic running into space could be on the cards for the Bianconeri.
There are many different ways for Vlahovic to find the back of the net though because he can shoot from distance, he has a great finish on him, he can score free-kicks and penalties and he is also able to score headers.
He will be the Juventus top scorer by a distance this season and he has a superb crack at being the Serie A top scorer for the first time in his career.
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AC Milan predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Tatarusanu; Dest, Kalulu, Tomori, Hernandez; Tonali, Bennacer; Krunic, Diaz, Leao; Giroud
Juventus predicted XI (3-4-3): Szczesny; Danilo, Bonucci, Bremer; Cuadrado, Locatelli, Rabiot, Kostic; Di Maria, Vlahovic, Milik
* All odds displayed correct at the time of publishing *
How to watch AC Milan v Juventus in Serie A?
📅 When is AC Milan v Juventus? / Saturday, 8th October 2022, 5:00PM
🏟 Where is AC Milan v Juventus? / San Siro (Milan)
📺 What TV channel is AC Milan v Juventus on? / BT Sport 1
🟨 …And who is the referee for AC Milan v Juventus? / D. Orsato 🇮🇹