Milan vs Hellas Verona: Serie A Preview, Potential Lineups & Prediction

Despite experiencing one of the worst title-defending campaigns in Serie A history, Milan will enter their final 2022/23 fixture against Hellas Verona in a buoyant mood. Sunday’s match-up at the Stadio San Siro won’t change anything for the hosts, but the visitors are in a ‘make or break’ situation. 

Thanks to Juventus’ point deduction and back-to-back league wins, including a 1-0 triumph over Massimiliano Allegri’s side last time out, Stefano Pioli’s men have secured a third consecutive Champions League qualification with a game to spare. Olivier Giroud’s first-half winner at the Allianz Stadium moved Milan six points clear of fifth-placed Atalanta going into the final weekend.

But in addition to securing a berth in Europe’s most prestigious club competition for next season, the Rossoneri have another important reason to celebrate. Standout performer Rafael Leao pledged his long-term future to the San Siro in the build-up to this contest, putting wild speculation linking him with a dozen European elite clubs to bed.

While the outcome won’t change the home team’s position in the standings, anything other than three points would likely send visiting Verona packing. Marco Zaffaroni’s lads commence the ultimate round of fixtures in the relegation zone, albeit they’re level on points with 17th-placed Spezia.

Considering Leonardo Sempici’s men boast a superior head-to-head record, Verona must better Spezia’s result at Roma. However, the visitors have seemingly run out of steam after making a late push to secure top-flight survival. Though a 1-1 home draw against Empoli last weekend halted their disappointing streak of two straight league defeats, the Gialloblu must feel terrified ahead of their trip to the San Siro. 

Match Preview


A dramatic 2-1 triumph at the Stadio Marc’Antonio Bentegodi in the reverse fixture marked Milan’s fourth consecutive Serie A victory over Verona. Though they’ve never defeated the Gialloblu in the top flight five times in a row, the Rossoneri are in a prime position to achieve that historic feat on Sunday. 

Pioli’s men are unbeaten in their last eight league outings on home turf (W5, D3), including a 5-1 demolition of Verona’s relegation rivals Sampdoria in their most recent outing at the San Siro. Delivering action from the get-go, Milan have netted a league-high 21 goals within the opening 30 minutes of play, highlighting the potential for a quick-fire start.

Player to Watch: Olivier Giroud

Last weekend’s strike in Turin saw Giroud net 12 goals in a single campaign in Europe’s top-five league for the first time since 2016/17 with Arsenal. The Frenchman also initiated Milan’s spectacular second-half comeback in a 3-2 win in this corresponding fixture last season. 

Hellas Verona

Except for a hard-earned 1-0 victory at promoted Lecce in early May, Verona have gone winless in their remaining 17 Serie A away games this season (D7, L10). Therefore, it’s no wonder only dead-last Sampdoria (9) have amassed fewer points on the road than Zaffaroni’s team (10), emphasizing the visitors’ concern ahead of this trip.

The signs couldn’t be more ominous for Verona. Each of the last 11 sides to manage just one away win in a Serie A season have suffered relegation, while they’ve won none of their last 30 top-flight visits to Milan! With the Gialloblu losing eight of their 11 away league matches after conceding the opening goal this season (D3), a slow start would likely put this contest beyond their reach.

Player to Watch: Simone Verdi

Verdi has been a talismanic figure for Verona in 2023, with Zaffaroni’s side winning 33% of their Serie A matches with him in the lineup (5/15). Without the 30-year-old, they’ve only managed a poor 14% win ratio in seven such fixtures. 

Team News

Ismael Bennacer and Zlatan Ibrahimovic are the only Milan players unavailable for the season finale. But with Giroud firing on all cylinders again and Sandro Tonali tormenting Verona at will, Pioli won’t worry much about the star duo’s absence.

As for the visitors, Ondrej Duda and Thomas Henry are the only definite absentees. Josh Doig, Kevin Lasagna, Darko Lazovic, and Pawel Dawidowicz could all make the matchday squad, but none is expected to start.

Milan vs Hellas Verona Potential Lineups

Milan (4-2-3-1): Mike Maignan; Davide Calabria, Malick Thiaw, Fikayo Tomori, Theo Hernandez; Rade Krunic, Sandro Tonali; Junior Messias, Brahim Diaz, Rafael Leao; Olivier Giroud. 

Hellas Verona (3-4-1-1): Lorenzo Montipo; Giangiacomo Magnani, Isak Hien, Juan Cabal; Davide Faraoni, Adrien Tameze, Miguel Veloso, Ibrahim Sulemana, Fabio Depaoli; Cyril Ngonge; Milan Djuric. 

Milan vs Hellas Verona Prediction

There’s a substantial gulf in class between Milan and Verona, so even though the visitors desperately need points at the San Siro, we expect Pioli’s team to sink the Gialloblu.

Prediction: Milan Win 

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