AC Milan came from two goals down to defeat Hellas Verona in their Serie A fixture on Saturday to go top of the table. The San Siro side were trailing by two goals at the end of the first half, but came out in the second half to complete a dramatic win and ensure that they end the day top of the table.
Goals from Olivier Giroud, Franck Kessie and an own goal by Koray Günter turned the game around for Milan after Igor Tudor’s side had gone ahead by two goals in the first half.
The away team who have picked up a notorious record of scoring inside the first 15 minutes of games began the game brightly, forcing backup goalkeeper Ciprian Tătărușanu into a low save after just three minutes.
And by their second attempt on goal, they were ahead thanks to poor defending by Milan. The goal came in the 7th minute via Gianluca Caprari, who got at the end of a defence-splitting pass from Miguel Veloso.
The goal was the sixth time in the last 16 games that Verona had scored the first 15 minutes of a game.
More sluggish defending by Milan allowed Verona to score their second of the night from the penalty spot as Alessandro Prontera was penalised for tripping Alessio Romagnoli in the box.
The home team then had their problems worsened before the break when Ante Rebić was forced off injured after 35 minutes.
But second-half changes gave the Rossoneri a huge boost with Rafael Leao and Olivier Giroud coming on to add some firepower to the Milan attack.
By the 59th minute, the substitutions paid off when Leao and Giroud combined to give Milan the lead. Stefano Pioli’s side Milan continued to press for an equaliser and it came in the 76th minute when Franck Kessie converted a penalty won by Samu Castillejo.
Two minutes later, the comeback was complete and Milan were ahead. The goal came in fortunate circumstances when Verona defender Koray Günter turned the ball into his own net from a cross.
Poor first-half performance nearly cost Milan
In the grand scheme of things, AC Milan were lucky to win this game considering their poor start in the first half.
Although the visitors have a knack for fast starts, the way Milan played allowed them too much space. The hosts looked slow in possession and sluggish off the ball in the first half, which allowed Verona a lot of space behind their defence.
Although their sloppiness didn’t eventually cost them, they will be hoping to avoid a repeat of such performance next time.
Olivier Giroud saves Milan
Despite missing for some time due to injury, Olivier Giroud returned to the side, and for 45 minutes showed why he can be considered one of the finest strikers out there.
The Frenchman’s introduction was one of the main reasons Milan came away with a win here. His introduction allowed the San Siro side to play with a target man.
The goal was his third for Milan in four league games and proved that the striker still has the quality to play at the top level.
Milan take their chances; Over to Napoli
With Inter Milan losing to Lazio earlier in the day and Napoli not playing till tomorrow, Milan took their chances to climb to the top of the table.
The hosts could have thrown this chance away, but they came out unstuck and will now end the day on top of the table.
They will now hope that Torino can pick up a win over Napoli on Sunday to help them remain top of the standings for the rest of the week.