By 90Min
May 13, 2018

With Napoli's title challenge finally falling away, attention in Italy has switched to the race for Champions League and Europa League places.

AC Milan confirmed their place in next season's Europa League with a pulsating 1-1 draw with fellow European hopefuls Atalanta. Milan now face the prospect of a July qualifier after the Nerazzurri's last gasp equaliser. 

Only one point separated the two sides heading into their clash at the Stadio Atleti Azzurri d'Italia and although both sides will be disappointed with a draw, they will take pleasure in Fiorentina's failure to take all three points against Cagliari.

Marco Luzzani/GettyImages

Heavy rain welcomed the players as they walked out and such conditions looked likely to define the game, with the ball skidding across the waterlogged pitch.


AC Milan settled the quicker of the two sides as the impressive Franck Kessie looked to get on the ball and dictate the tempo of his team's play.

With 15 minutes gone, Atalanta were yet to trouble the Milan defence with the Rossoneri showing a greater inclination to push forward and secure the point that would confirm a Europa League berth next season.

Marco Luzzani/GettyImages

As the first half wore on Atalanta's presence in the game grew stronger, as 19-year-old Musa Barrow's direct running threatened to cause problems for the Milan defence. 

Barrow has been a revelation since breaking into the first team this season, scoring three in his last four games, and a fine ball over the top Alejandro Gomez provided the opportunity for a fourth. However the youngster's hurried finish did little to trouble Gianluigi Donnarumma.

Gennaro Gattuso's men then proceeded to have their best spell of the half, penning Atalanta back and drawing a number of cynical fouls. 

Marco Luzzani/GettyImages

Milan, who can be so dangerous from set pieces thanks to Hakan Calhanoglu's expert deliveries, came close from a powerful in-swinging free-kick - but Mattia Caldara was able to head clear.

As the first half drew to a close, the downpour showed no signs of relenting and the saturated playing surface started leading to errors from either side.

And it was an error that almost cost AC Milan, when a poorly controlled pass by Milan right-back Ignazio Abate resulted in a quite spectacular goalmouth scramble, only for both Byran Cristante and Gomez's efforts to be well blocked.

Marco Luzzani/GettyImages

The Nerazzurri were the quicker out of the blocks in the second half and a testing cross provided by Martin de Roon demonstrated the testing conditions as Donnarumma scuffed a punched clearance.

The best chance of the game so far came 52nd minute when Cristante's shot from the edge of the Milan box found the side netting, a deflection from Leonardo Bonucci proving crucial for the away side.

The resulting corner provided yet another opportunity for Atalanta when Cristante directed his header to the near post but Donnarumma provided a stunning reaction save down low to his right.

Marco Luzzani/GettyImages

The danger was not clear when the young goalkeeper's parry fell to the feet of Caldara who somehow sliced his effort wide from two yards.

It didn't take long for Atalanta to rue their missed chances when AC Milan broke the deadlock in the 59th minute. 

Kessie scored the goal that could see his former club miss out on European football next term when the ball fell to the midfielder at the edge of the box, and his powerful drive flew into the bottom left hand corner.

Marco Luzzani/GettyImages

Things went from bad to worse for Atalanta when Rafael Toloi was sent off, picking up a second yellow card for dissent for his reaction to an initial booking. 

Atalanta tried to stay positive, but the game threatened to spiral out of control, with the referee intent on giving himself a mountain of homework.

Marco Luzzani/GettyImages

With 15 minutes remaining, half time substitute Riccardo Montolivo was sent off, the Milan midfielder sliding recklessly into a challenge to earn a straight red card. With both teams down to 10 men and with 13 cards shown, Atalanta forced their way back into the game - firing home an unlikely equaliser in injury time. 


Adrea Masiello met a cross by Josip Ilicic and headed into the bottom left hand corner of Donnarumma's goal, sparking pandemonium at the Stadio Atleti Azzurri d'Italia.

AC Milan still qualify for next season's Europa League but must avoid defeat in their final match or risk having to take part in a July qualifier. 

You May Like

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)