Europa League • Shamrock Rovers-AC Milan Preview: Testing Our Luck

On Thursday, Milan step back into European Competition by putting our foot on the second rung of the ladder as we climb back up to where we want to be. This second qualifying round of the Europa League will be played in Dublin, as we face Shamrock Rovers. Playing away, and not having kicked off the Serie A season just yet, we will be testing our luck.

How Shamrock Rovers reacted when they heard Ibrahimovic would be coming to Dublin

Shamrock Rovers are the Juventus of the League of Ireland Premier Division. Or maybe the Inter of the league, depending on how you look at it. Like Juventus, they have the most Irish titles of any club, and like Inter, they finished second last season. Either way, they sit in first right now. Ireland had a four month break after their season was interrupted by COVID-19, so are about two-thirds of the way through their 2020 season right now.

Shamrock Rovers won their match 3-0 against Cork City on Saturday. For that match, Stephan Bradley lined up: Alan Mannus; Liam Scales, Roberto Lopes, Lee Grace; Ronan Finn, Aaron McEneff, Gary O’ Neill, Danny Lafferty, Jack Byrne, Aaron Greene, and Graham Burke. Bradley will be missing Greg Bolger, while Sean Kavanagh is not fully fit and is doubtful for this match.

Healing from a knock

Pioli has some injury issues. Leao has tested positive for COVID-19, so will miss this match. Musacchio is still injured, and perhaps our most impactful injury is Romagnoli, who is still out from his calf injury. Ibrahimovic also had a calf injury, reported as a bruise, and is likely to be available, but still doubtful for this match. Additionally, Rebic is suspended for this match as a result of something that happened when he was with Eintracht Frankfurt.

Newcomers Tatarusanu, Kalulu, Tonali, Pobega, and Diaz all made the Europa League list, as did a number of youth players. If Pioli’s squad plays as well tomorrow as they did after the break in Serie A, Milan will be fine. However, it may be an advantage that Shamrock Rovers are fully match fit.

In Romagnoli's absence, Gigio will be captain

Ideally, we would kick off our Europa League qualifying campaign with a convincing win, both to save face and boost morale. However, Shamrock Rovers are not to be underestimated. After being humbled by mismanagement and ownership changes for the past ten years, ultimately costing us our chance to play in Europe, we should be humble and sporting with every match. This one could really go either way, but let’s hope that it goes Milan’s way, as we are testing our luck.

This post inspired by the music of The Cranberries' “Dreams”

Europa League Qualifying Second Round
Shamrock Rovers vs. AC Milan
Thursday, September 17 • 20:00 CEST (2pm EDT)
This match should be on the Milan App in the U.S.

Europa League • Shamrock Rovers-AC Milan Preview: Testing Our Luck Europa League • Shamrock Rovers-AC Milan Preview: Testing Our Luck Reviewed by Elaine on 1:45 AM Rating: 5
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