AC Milan vs Manchester United | Thursday 18th March 2021, 20:00 | BT Sport
AC Milan welcome Manchester United to the San Siro and it’s the hosts who currently have the advantage.
Manchester United led for the majority of the first leg and looked as though they would be taking a 1-0 lead into the second-leg. That was until Milan’s Simon Kjær popped up with a last-gasp equaliser to completely swing the tie in favour of The Rossoneri.
Now, all eyes are firmly fixed on the San Siro to see the second leg of a curiously poised tie to see which of these two can proceed into the quarter-finals.
● Averaging just 0.5 cards per game when playing at home in the Europa League this season.
● AC Milan have drawn their last 3 matches against Man Utd in all competitions.
● The opposition is averaging 21.75 throw-ins per game when AC Milan are at home – Celtic saw 30 in the group stage game.
● Their opposition has seen the most booking points in every game where AC Milan have been the home side.
● Being awarded an average of 21.3 free kicks per game in home UEL matches this season.
● Commit the fourth-highest fouls per game overall of the teams left in the competition (14.2 fpg).
● AC Milan recovered Hakan Calhanoglu, Theo Hernandez and Ante Rebic from injury in Sunday's 1-0 defeat to Napoli in a big boost ahead of the return leg.
● Ismael Benancer returned to first-team training on Monday and could make the matchday squad here after a month out injured.
● Zlatan Ibrahimovic is also pushing for a return from injury but isn't expected to start. Alessio Romagnoli and Mario Mandzukic are also injury concerns.
● Are averaging 2.3 cards per game away from home in European competitions this season.
● Man Utd are undefeated in 24 of their last 26 matches in the UEL.
● Average 20.5 throw-ins per away game in the European competitions this season.
● Over 18.5 throw-ins has landed in 3/4 away European matches – only against PSG did they not cover this line.
● Have either tied or seen more booking points in 3/4 away European games.
● Are committing on average 12.75 fouls per game when playing away in Europe this season.
● Receiving on average 15.5 free kicks per game when playing away in Europe.
● Are the fifth most fouled side overall of the teams left in the competition (12.7 fpg).
● Eric Bailly and Anthony Martial miss out for Manchester United through injury. Juan Mata and Phil Jones are still sidelined. Edinson Cavani has also not made the trip.
● Paul Pogba and Donny van de Beek are all in the squad after returning to training this week.
● David de Gea is also back in the squad after returning from Spain but Dean Henderson is expected to keep his place between the sticks.
Ref: Dr. Felix Brych
● Is awarding an average of 4.00 yellow cards per game in Europe this season.
● Is awarding an average of 26.00 free-kicks per game in Europe this season.
● In four European games officiated, he has shown the away side 2+ cards on all four occasions.
My first pick is for there to be over 25.5 fouls committed in the game on Unibet. I’m quite shocked at the price, to say the least. I’d have this bet at around 1.29 (2/7) and bet365 have priced it up similarly to where I think the odds should be – although they also count offsides as fouls/free-kicks.
This exact bet has landed in 8/9 of AC Milan’s European fixtures this season and has landed in all nine of Manchester United’s – including in the first leg of this tie.
With all still to play for and no margin for error, I’m expecting a high foul count in this one and that price represents value.
My second pick is a little bit different and it’s a market I’ve been learning more about over recent weeks so I’m going to bring it to the previews.
AC Milan are allowing their opponents approximately 21.75 throw-ins per game when playing at home in Europe this season. When Celtic made the trip to Italy they saw a massive 30 throw-ins.
High numbers usually come from teams that like to press the opponent into making mistakes and United’s will want to do just that as they look to secure an away goal and swing the tie in their favour. With the Red Devils often hitting the high 20’s when playing away from home and pressing their opponent, I think they comfortably take at least 20 throw-ins here.
For this to land, we then just need United to take 12 or more free-kicks. Of the teams left in the competition, Milan commits the fourth most fouls overall with an average of 14.2 fouls per game. United are also the fourth most fouled side left in the competition and so i think this line also lands comfortably.
This exact bet landed with ease in the first leg and I’m expecting it to here as well. With the stats behind it and the state of the tie, I’d have this bet at around 4/5 or 1.8. As such, I’m more than happy to take evens.