Milan-Bologna Preview: From the Heart

Sinisa Mihajlovic holds a special place in many Milan fans' hearts. He was the one who fought to bring Romagnoli to Milan when Berlusconi wasn't wanting to pay the price. He was also the one who gave Gigio Donnarumma his start at the age of 16 years old. Mihajlovic was then unceremoniously sacked with only six games left because of personal differences with Berlusconi. The man has a massive heart beneath a notoriously tough exterior. So when he battled Leukemia, had bone marrow transplants, and tested positive for COVID-19, all in the past year, Milan fans were rooting for him. As a player, and as a manager, he always speaks his mind, but lives his life from the heart.

Still in our hearts

Tomorrow, Milan fans will not be rooting for Mihajlovic, even if we get a bit emotional seeing our former manager. We face off against Bologna for our first Serie A match of the season, and Mihajlovic should be on the bench after his COVID-19 scare. As this is the first match of their season, it is difficult to know, but a predicted lineup for Mihajlovic's side could look like: Skorupski; De Silvestri, Danilo, Tomiyasu, Denswil; Svanberg, Schouten; Barrow, Soriano, Orsolini; Palacio. Gary Medel accumulated yellow cards at the end of the season and will sit this one out due to suspension.

The big news for this match is that the government and local authorities have agreed to allow up to 1,000 fans into stadiums in Italy this weekend. How those fans are chosen, I won't know, but it is hope of a return to some normalcy if the experiment goes well. And it is certainly 1,000 more fans than have been in attendance at matches since March. I assume that they will be Milan fans, so hopefully racism won't be an issue in the first match with fans in attendance.

Frenemies

Considering that Pioli's side scored five goals against Bologna when we met this summer, he has to have some confidence going into this game. Sure, we are missing Romagnoli, Musacchio, and Conti to injury, and are still waiting for Leao to complete his quarantine and test negative for COVID-19, so we won't have him, either. But Pioli will be able to start Rebic if he chooses to, as his suspension only applies to Europa League matches. I'm sure he will be sticking with the amazing 4-2-3-1 system that has worked miracles for Milan and left them unbeaten since March.

Milan will be tired, having flown to Ireland and played in the Europa League on Thursday. We also have another Europa League qualifier this Thursday as well. However, one of the things the mercato has provided Milan with is depth on the bench. Pioli actually has options. And if the friendlies are any indication, then that should go well for us.

Still in love

However, never underestimate a team coached by Mihajlovic. Plus, he could play Andrea Poli, former Milan player extraordinaire, who reportedly has a new streamlined look. Then the law of the exes comes into play, and anything could happen. It will be a little emotional seeing Mihajlovic, but Milan can get off to a strong start in the league if they play from the heart.


This match inspired by the music of The Cure's "In Between Days"


Serie A Week 1
Milan vs. Bologna
Monday, September 21 • 20:45 CEST (2:45pm EDT)

This match can be streamed LIVE on ESPN+ in the U.S.

Milan-Bologna Preview: From the Heart Milan-Bologna Preview: From the Heart Reviewed by Elaine on 1:30 AM Rating: 5
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