Milan vs Bologna Preview and Lineups – Serie A Round 3

Defending Serie A champions Milan welcome last season’s mid-table strugglers Bologna to San Siro in a must-win league fixture. Coming into proceedings as odds-on favourites to claim all three points, the Rossoneri will be looking to round off Saturday’s Serie A action in style.

Despite ongoing talks linking Rafael Leao with a blockbuster departure for some Premier League clubs, including Chelsea, Stefano Pioli’s men have enjoyed a decent start to the season. Milan first came from an early one-goal down to utterly outclass Udinese in a 4-2 home win on the opening weekend. Last week, they hauled back a one-goal deficit to hold Atalanta to a 1-1 draw in Bergamo. 

On the other hand, Bologna’s bid to better last season’s underwhelming 13th-place finish has been off to a sluggish start. Sinisa Mihajlovic’s side squandered a 1-0 halftime lead at the Stadio Olimpico on matchday one, eventually finding themselves on the wrong end of a 2-1 scoreline. The Rossolblu then let Hellas Verona return from a goal down to eke out a 1-1 draw at Renato Dall’Ara last time out. 

Though this should not be a walk in the park for Milan by any stretch of the imagination, the Rossoneri are seemingly in a prime position to overcome last week’s setback at Atalanta. 

Match Preview


It’s been very much plain sailing for Milan against Bologna of late. Across the last 25 Serie A meetings between these two sides, the Rossoneri have only lost once, clocking up 18 wins and six draws. Interestingly, their solitary defeat in that spread of matches came during Mihajlovic’s managerial tenure at San Siro, back in January 2016.

Adding to the home side’s confidence, Pioli’s men have kept Bologna goalless in both previous league encounters in Lombardy (W1, D1). Another shutout would see Milan register three consecutive home clean sheets against this opposition in Serie A for the first time since a run of six in 1999.

If you’re looking for an omen, Milan came out victorious in their opening home league outing against Udinese. In both Pioli’s Serie A seasons in charge, the Rossoneri have won both their first two home games of the season and could do it three times on the trot for the first time since 2003/04.


Prolificacy has not been Bologna’s strong suit early in the season. Mihajlovic’s men have scored precisely once in their three competitive games in 2022/23, including a narrow 1-0 win over lower-league Cosenza in the Coppa Italia earlier in August. But they will feel confident of troubling the scoresheet at San Siro.

Bologna have found the net in their last three away league fixtures, with standout striker Marko Arnautovic bagging two of their four goals in that sequence. It’s fair to admit that the Rossoblu have been the architects of their own downfall so far in this season, receiving red cards in both of their opening league matches. 

Any potential dismissal at San Siro would see Bologna become the first Serie A side since 1994/95 to pick up three red cards in their opening three games. This showdown looks daunting enough for the visitors even with 11 men on the pitch, considering they’ve only registered one win in their last 11 league matches on the road (D4, L6). 

Team News

Following Junior Messias’ disappointing display against Atalanta, Charles De Ketelaere could be staking his claim for a place in Pioli’s starting line-up on Saturday. Zlatan Ibrahimovic remains the only notable absentee in the Milan camp, though. 

As for Bologna, after being sent off against Verona last time out, Riccardo Orsolini will be unavailable for selection. Yet, Bologna will welcome Adama Soumaoro back to the fold after the young centre-back served a one-game ban. 

Milan vs Bologna Potential Line-ups

Milan (4-2-3-1): Mike Maignan; Theo Hernandez, Fikayo Tomori, Pierre Kalulu, Davide Calabria; Sandro Tonali, Ismael Bennacer; Ante Rebic, Rafael Leao, Charles De Ketelaere; Divock Origi. 

Bologna (3-4-3): Lukasz Skorupski; Adama Soumaoro, Gary Medel, Kevin Bonifazi; Lorenzo De Silvestri, Nicolas Dominguez, Jerdy Schouten, Andrea Cambiaso; Roberto Soriano, Musa Barrow, Marko Arnautovic.