Manchester United’s UEFA Europa League opponents AC Milan suffered defeat to Napoli in Serie A on Sunday.
While the Reds claimed three important Premier League points with a 1-0 triumph over West Ham at Old Trafford, the Italian side had a disappointing weekend.
The Rossoneri have enjoyed a great season so far in their domestic league under the leadership of Stefano Pioli, but their pursuit of the Serie A title was made more difficult when Napoli’s Matteo Politano scored the only goal of the game at San Siro.
Following the disappointing result, Milan are now nine points behind city rivals Interazionale with 11 games of the league season left.
There was more bad news due to a hat-trick from ex-Red Cristiano Ronaldo in Juventus’s 3-1 win over Cagliari: the Old Lady can overtake United’s European opponents and go second in the table should they win their game in hand.
Highlights: United 1 AC Milan 1Video
There was no sign of former United player Zlatan Ibrahimovic during Sunday’s loss, but Milan did welcome some important players back after spells on the sideline. Among them were defender Theo Hernandez, playmaker Hakan Calhanoglu and forward Ante Rebic, who got sent off in injury-time against the Azzurri.
Pioli also rested some of his star men against Napoli. Right-back Davide Calabria was not involved, which meant on-loan full-back Diogo Dalot slotted in there, as Hernandez was reintroduced to his usual left-back position. Simon Kjaer, who scored the Rossoneri’s crucial injury-time equaliser at Old Trafford last time out, was sat on the bench for the whole match. Alexis Saelemaekers, Brahim Diaz and Soualiho Meite, who all started at the Theatre of Dreams, only got substitute appearances, meanwhile Franck Kessie was taken off after an hour.
After the draw at Old Trafford last Thursday, in which Amad scored his first goal for the club, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men will have to score at the San Siro in order to progress. With that as a requirement, we can certainly hope for an entertaining if nerve-wracking second leg in Italy.
The return of the round-of-16 clash kicks off at 20:00 GMT and you can follow the match live on ManUtd.com and in our Official App. There will also be live radio commentary on MUTV, providing exclusive live build-up. The Match Day Live programme starts at 18:55 GMT.