MX23RW : Thursday, August 5 15:50:21| >> :120:9608:9608:
Aug 1, 2020 at 7.45pm UK at Giuseppe Meazza
AC MilanAC Milan
Klavan (11' og.), Ibrahimovic (55'), Castillejo (57')
Saelemaekers (67')
FT(HT: 1-0)

Pereiro (13'), Farago (45'), Cragno (58')

Preview: AC Milan vs. Cagliari - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Serie A clash between AC Milan and Cagliari, including team news and predicted lineups.

AC Milan will be looking to end their 2019-20 Serie A campaign on a positive note when they welcome Cagliari to San Siro on Saturday night for their final match of the season.

Stefano Pioli's side will finish sixth in the table regardless of what happens on the final weekend, but Cagliari could finish as high as 10th if they triumph against the Red and Blacks.

Match preview

AC Milan manager Stefano Pioli pictured in February 2020© Reuters

Milan are unbeaten in their 12 matches since returning to action following the lockdown period, including 11 in Serie A, which has seen them consolidate sixth spot in the division ahead of the final weekend.

Pioli's side have been unable to launch a top-four challenge this term, currently sitting 15 points behind fourth-placed Lazio, but there have been plenty of positive signs since returning to the field in March.

The Red and Blacks, who have won 18, drawn nine and lost 10 of their 37 league matches this season, will enter this contest off the back of an impressive 4-1 victory over Sampdoria on Wednesday night.

Milan have actually now won four of their last five in Italy's top flight, while they have beaten Lazio and Juventus, in addition to drawing with Atalanta BC, over the last few weeks.

I Rossoneri only have the seventh-best home record in Serie A this season, though, dropping points in 10 of their 18 matches at San Siro, with their form on the road superior.

Cagliari boss Walter Zenga pictured in April 2018© Reuters

Cagliari will be the underdogs heading into Saturday's clash, but they will be full of confidence following an impressive 2-0 victory over the champions Juve on Wednesday night.

The Old Lady secured the title at the weekend courtesy of a win over Sampdoria, but it was still a huge result for Cagliari, who scored twice in the first half against the Old Lady through Luca Gagliano and Giovanni Simeone.

Walter Zenga's side were actually on an eight-game winless run in the league ahead of the clash with Maurizio Sarri's side, having struggled for results since beating SPAL and Torino at the end of June.

Gli Isolani are currently 13th but could finish as high as 10th this weekend, which would represent their best placing at this level of football since claiming ninth at the end of the 2008-09 season.

Milan Serie A form: DWWWDW

Cagliari Serie A form: DLDLLW

Team News

Juventus' Cristiano Ronaldo in action with AC Milan's Ismael Bennacer in February 2020© Reuters

Milan will again be without the services of Andrea Conti, Alessio Romagnoli and Mateo Musacchio through injury, but the Italian giants did not pick up any fresh fitness concerns against Sampdoria.

Theo Hernandez and Ismael Bennacer returned from suspensions on Wednesday night and should retain their spots in the XI for this game, but there could be a change in attack with fit-again Samu Castillejo taking the place of Alexis Saelemaekers.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored a brace against Sampdoria, making it four goals in his last three appearances, and the veteran striker should keep his spot at the tip of the attack.

As for Cagliari, Radja Nainggolan, Luca Pellegrini, Christian Oliva and Leonardo Pavoletti remain on the sidelines through injury, but Nahitan Nandez is back from suspension.

Zenga could keep faith with the same side that started against Juve, meaning that Gagliano is likely to be rewarded with another start alongside Simeone and Joao Pedro in the final third of the field.

Milan possible starting lineup:
Donnarumma; Calabria, Kjaer, Gabbia, Hernandez; Kessie, Bennacer; Castillejo, Calhanoglu, Rebic; Ibrahimovic

Cagliari possible starting lineup:
Cragno; Walukiewicz, Ceppitelli, Klavan; Farago, Rog, Ionita, Mattiello; Pedro; Simeone, Gagliano

Sports Mole Logo

We say: Milan 2-0 Cagliari

Cagliari will enter the match off the back of a morale-boosting win over Juve, but we are finding it difficult to back against Milan, who have been in impressive form since returning to the field last month. Cagliari are capable of causing some problems, but we are backing a two-goal home success in this game.

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Juventus attacker Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates scoring against Sampdoria on July 26, 2020
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Thursday's key events

· The women's heptathlon continues with the long jump, javelin and 800m, with Katarina Johnson-Thompson now out of contention following an injury (1.10am-1.40pm)
· Andrew Pozzi pursues his dream of an Olympic medal in the men's 110m hurdles final (3.55am)
· Tom Bosworth and Callum Wilkinson are among the British hopes in the men's 20km race walk (8.30am)
· Holly Bradshaw aims to improve on fifth in Rio to challenge Greece's Katerina Stefanidi and Anzhelika Sidorova of Russia for an unlikely medal in the women's pole vault (11am)
· London 2012 champion Kirani James goes up against current world champion Steven Gardiner in the men's 400m final (1pm)

· One of the toughest Olympic events takes place in Tokyo Bay as GB's Hector Pardoe takes on the men's 20km marathon swim (10.30pm Wed)

· Galal Yafai takes on takes on Kazakhstan's Saken Bibossinov for a spot in the gold medal bout of the fly (48kg-52kg) class (6.48am)

· Lois Toulson and Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix (daughter of First Dates' Fred Sirieix) line up for the women's 10m platform (semi-final 2am; final 7am)

· Australia face Belgium in the men's final (11am)

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