Slowly finding their feet in Serie A, AC Milan welcome Málaga CF to San Siro with work still to do in UEFA Champions League Group C. Massimiliano Allegri's Rossoneri may be second in the section but they are five points adrift of the leaders, who have won their first three fixtures without conceding, and Manuel Pellegrini has told his side that they should not be cowed by thoughts of past Milan achievements.
Massimiliano Allegri, coach
Málaga have a very good chance of getting through, but the group is still open. They have a lot of quality as they showed in our last game [when beating Milan 1-0]. We have to improve in attack.
Victory against Chievo was very important for us, but we have to be humble because we have a lot of work to do. Some players need to improve.
Three wins may not even be enough to win the group, but now we are focused on qualification. We are in good physical condition and we have more confidence. Playing at San Siro is not easy – it takes some getting used to. Our new players are starting to do that and to prove their quality. The performances of [Riccardo] Montolivo and [Kévin] Constant have been proof of that.
Málaga lost to Rayo Vallecano but we will not pay much attention to that. On the left will be Constant, on the right will be [Ignazio] Abate. I have some doubts in attack. I expect a lot from everyone, not just from [Kevin-Prince] Boateng, Robinho and Pato. However, of course these three are great players for their physical and technical qualities. I hope San Siro will be full, as the lads deserve it.
Saturday: Milan 5-1 AC Chievo Verona (Emanuelson 16, Montolivo 36, Bojan 41, El Shaarawy 75, Pazzini 90+3; Pellissier 18)
Abbiati; Abate (De Sciglio 86), Mexès, Zapata, Constant; Montolivo (De Jong 77), Ambrosini; Emanuelson (Boateng 68), Bojan, El Shaarawy; Pazzini.
• Five different players scored against Chievo, the first time that has happened in a Serie A game for Milan since they defeated US Foggia 8-2 on 24 May 1992.
Robinho has resumed training earlier than expected following the thigh injury he suffered on 16 October. Luca Antonini, however, is still out with a similar problem.
Manuel Pellegrini, coach
If we play for a draw, we will lose. We'll try to win and play our game.
Milan have a great tradition and history – much more illustrious than Málaga – but we have nine points on the board, and it won't be history that takes to the field.
It will be very difficult for us, but I'm not worried. Their success against Chievo took the pressure off them a bit, but they will still be under more pressure than us. They are used to playing under pressure because are a strong team. [Stephan] El Shaarawy is very strong but Isco has a lot of quality too.
Saturday: Málaga 1-2 Rayo Vallecano de Madrid (Demichelis 49; Piti 11 60)
Willy; Jesús Gámez, Demichelis, Weligton, Eliseu; Portillo (Duda 72), Camacho, Iturra (Santa Cruz 46), Joaquín, Isco; Saviola (Buonanotte 72).
• Málaga's first home defeat since March brought an end to their run of 11 games unbeaten at La Rosaleda.
Jérémy Toulalan has recovered from the hamstring injury which has sidelined him since 23 September and has been named in the matchday squad. Nacho Monreal (back), Júlio Baptista (Achilles) and Recio (virus) miss out.
Milan's goalless draw against RSC Anderlecht on matchday one was their fifth clean sheet in their last six home fixtures in the UEFA Champions League. Málaga, meanwhile, have yet to concede in five games in the competition, having overcome Panathinaikos FC 2-0 on aggregate in the play-offs.
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