Italian Serie A News, Results, Analysis and Features on Football Soccer

Ebrahim Sadien On March - 31 - 2013

Chievo Verona vs Milan Recap

Ricardo Montolivo scored the only goal of the game to hand AC Milan a victory away to Chievo.

The Italian international’s strike from close range during the first half was enough to ensure Milan remain unbeaten in 2013. Massimiliano Allegri’s men were once again inspired by a strong performance by Mario Balotelli. Chievo’s centre back Dario Dainelli was red carded late in the second half to extinguish any hopes of getting back into the match.

Milan continued their pursuit of second place with yet another victory despite not being at their best. The Rossoneri remained in third place however, after Napoli’s victory over Torino later in the evening, but extended the gap to six points above forth place.

Milan handed Robinho a rare start this season as both Kevin-Prince Boateng and Giampaolo Pazzini missed out through injury. The Stadio Bentegodi pitch was water-logged and of a poor standard. This ultimately had an impact on the quality of football produced by both teams.

The visitors dominated possession early in what was a scrappy beginning to the game. The opening twenty minutes flew by without any real scoring opportunities but eventually mid way through the first half, Milan made their possession count. Mario Balotelli was obstructed off the ball and the referee was on the spot to award a free-kick. Super Mario stood up and his fierce free-kick was parried by Christian Pugggioni back into the six yard box. Montolivo reacted first and made no mistake in poking the ball home.

The rest of the half became a Balotelli verse Puggioni show as the former Manchester City man had three more free-kicks awkwardly parried away by the Chievo shot stopper. Balotelli’s free kicks were all that worried Puggioni though as Milan were unable to conjure up any other scoring opportunities during the first half.

The second half continued much in the same vein although the Rossoneri managed to create a few scoring opportunities from open play in addition to Balotelli’s set pieces. A further three free kicks from the Italian forward were on target and unconvincingly dealt with by Puggioni in the second half. The home side enjoyed more possession early in the second period and pushed forward but this allowed Milan to threaten on the break. The home side eventually did come close to scoring on sixty nine minutes as Luciano Siqueira de Oliveira’s powerful shot was excellently saved by Christian Abbiati. Any chance of stealing anything from the game however, was blown when Dainelli was dismissed for a second bookable offence, late in the game.

Milan will be satisfied with their ninth victory of 2013 as they look forward to a tough fixture against Fiorentina next weekend. Despite the Rossoneri not being at their fluent best, partly due to the pitch conditions, they never really look in trouble. Buoyed by the excellent form of Mario Balotelli Milan continues their resurgence this season and remains hot on the heels of Napoli in second place.

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