This week’s highlight fixture in Serie A sees two sides chasing Champions League qualification, as Atalanta take on AC Milan. Will AC Milan strengthen their top four chances? Can Atalanta overtake AC Milan into the Champions League places? Read on to find out more.
Live Atalanta vs. AC Milan odds
The 1X2 odds suggest that Atalanta are the slight favourites to win the game, with a 48% chance of securing a home win. The Over/Under is set at 2.5, with the current Pinnacle odds marginally suggesting a high scoring content with over odds priced at 1.943*.
Date – Saturday February 16
Time – 18:30 UTC
Venue – Atleti Azzurri d’Italia
Atalanta vs. AC Milan predicted lineups
Atalanta predicted lineup
3-4-1-2 – Berisha (GK), Toloi, Palomino, Mancini, Hateboer, de Roon, Freuler, Castagne, Gomez, Ilicic, Zapata
Atalanta manager Gian Piero Gasperini has a fully fit squad at his disposal, but with Atalanta in such great form, its unlikely he will make sweeping changes. Berat Djimisti could come in for Palomino in the middle of the back three, whilst Gosens and Pasalic could both make cameo appearances from the bench.
AC Milan predicted lineup
4-3-3 – Donnarumma (GK), Calabria, Musacchio, Romagnoli, Rodriguez, Kessie, Bakayoko, Paqueta, Suso, Calhanoglu, Piatek
Giacomo Bonaventura, Christian Zapata, and Pepe Reina are the only injury absentees for the Rossoneri, with Mattia Caldara and Lucas Biglia fit again to make the bench.
Fabio Borini, Patrick Cutrone and Samu Castillejo will all be looking to feature from the bench, with Calabria solidifying his place at right back ahead of Andrea Conti.
Atalanta vs. AC Milan statistics
• AC Milan have beaten Atalanta once in their last 10 meetings in Serie A, in May 2015 (P10, W1, D5, L4)
• There have been four draws in the last five meetings between the two sides in Serie A
• There have been under 2.5 goals in four of the last five games between both teams
• Both teams have scored in three of the last five games against each other
• Both teams come into the match unbeaten in their last six games
• Atalanta have an xG per game of 1.95 and an xGA per game of 1.18
• AC Milan have an xG per game of 1.42 and an xGA per game of 1
Inform your Atalanta vs. AC Milan prediction
Atalanta and AC Milan clash in Bergamo in a pivotal encounter for both sides Champions league aspirations in what is undoubtedly the pick of this weekends fixtures in Serie A.
Much like the top four race in England, the Italian race for European qualification is just as, if not more compelling, with Inter, AC Milan, Atalanta, Roma, and Lazio all vying to finish in the first four position in the league.
4th position to 7th is separated by just one point, meaning each weekend can see teams trade positions and move up or down as many as three places at a time.
Atalanta in 5th meet AC Milan, who are one place and one point above them in fourth - in what is surely a must-win game for both sides.
La Dea lead the league in goal scoring, with 50 goals in 23 games, thanks in part to the attacking trio of Papu Gomez, Josep Ilicic ,and most of all, Capocannoniere contender Duvan Zapata.
Duvan Zapata has been a revelation for Atalanta this season, contributing 16 goals and four assists in 23 appearances, far and away his best goal-scoring return in his career.
Between the three of them, they have contributed to 44 of the 50 league goals for La Dea, working in unison within Gasperini’s system that utilises wing-backs pushing forward, followed by the attacking trident moving fluidly into attacking spaces.
Gasperini’s aforementioned system has meant that wing-backs Hateboer and Castagne have contributed 11 goals and assists between them, with centre back Gianluca Mancini scoring five goals and registering one assist – highlighting Atalanta’s attacking might that has resulted in them outscoring their xG by six goals. Only Sampdoria have outscored their xG by a larger amount (nine).
AC Milan have been in good form themselves, and have been buoyed by the recent signing of Krysztof Piatek who has two goals in two league starts for his new team, including a brace against Napoli in the Coppa Italia in his first start in a Milan shirt.
Whilst Atalanta have been clearly better offensively than AC Milan, scoring 22 goals more but its defensively where the Rossoneri pull rank, as they have conceded 32 goals, ten less than Atalanta and the fourth best record in the league.
Much like the top four race in England, the Italian race for European qualification is just as, if not more compelling.
Atalanta appear to be a bogey team for AC Milan in recent seasons, with just the one win in their last ten league meetings – a record Milan manager Gennaro Gattuso will be hoping to rectify when the two teams meet on Saturday.
With both teams coming into the match unbeaten in their last six games, the intriguing narrative of a free-scoring Atalanta side coming up against the resolute defence of AC Milan should make for a compelling game. The Champions League qualification ramifications are ramping up the pressure on both sides to secure a positive result, and hopefully create a great game to watch for the neutral.
Atalanta vs. AC Milan: Where is the value?
This game sees the irresistible attacking force that is Atalanta come up against the somewhat immovable object in the form of AC Milan, meaning the chance of a high or low-scoring game is dependent on which team can utilise their strengths the most efficiently.
Bettors may opt to back Atalanta to maintain their good domestic form, and continue the recent positive trend against AC Milan by using the Totals market for value, with over 1.5 Atalanta goals currently priced at 2.030*
The Handicap market can also be a potential avenue for value betting, with Atalanta -1 priced at 3.100*.
Conversely, AC Milan’s sturdy defence could lead bettors to back a low-scoring team, content with odds of Under 2.75 priced at 1.724*.
Never miss a Serie A preview! Follow Pinnacle on Twitter or read our betting advice.