Roma vs AC Milan Prediction: Goals and Cards aplenty in a feisty return leg

 | 17th April | 

6 mins read

roma vs ac milan predictions betting tips europa league 18 april 2024

An Italian battle is set for Rome on Thursday evening as the home side look to hold on to a slim one-goal lead from the first-leg to progress to the semi-final stage of the competition. The game will be broadcast live in the UK on TNT Sports 4 and has a kick-off time set for 20:00.

We've asked our Italian Football expert Daniele Fisichella to preview this one as he picks out his two Best Bets for the game as part of his Roma vs AC Milan predictions for us at Betfred Insights...

Roma vs AC Milan Betting Tips

  • Both Teams To Score @ 4/6
  • Over 52.5 Booking Points @ 5/6

Roma came out of San Siro with a slim advantage thanks to Gianluca Mancini’s header and an organised, lucid and ferocious performance.

Last week the Rossoneri suffered from the lack of inspiration of some of their star players, Rafael Leao above all, and could not make their second half pressure count.

The hosts have an amazing record at home in European competition and are looking to advance to the semi-finals for the third year in a row. But write off AC Milan at your peril.

In the last couple of years Stefano Pioli’s men have often defied the odds and a win at the ‘Stadio Olimpico’ is not beyond the limits of a side that has already obtained 12 away successes in all competitions.

The first leg was finally balanced and even tough AC Milan had more chances (Olivier Giroud hit the bar in the last minute), Roma seemed more in control of the game from the start.

Daniele De Rossi’s decision to deploy El Shaarawy on the right-hand side, to limit Leao action, was the decisive move. The Giallorossi scored from a corner, as they did five days before in derby, and remained calm and compact.

At the weekend both managers made seven changes to preserve energies for this crucial game.

AC Milan started terribly against second from bottom Sassuolo as they conceded twice within the first ten minutes.

Pioli was forced to use some of his most trusted players, like Pulisic and Giroud, to eventually rescue a 3-3 draw.

The Giallorossi only played 72 minutes in Udine before the game was suspended due to Evan N’Dicka collapsing on the field before being stretched off.

Going back to a three men defence, Roma looked confused in the first half and their defensive frailties emerged once again.

The hosts improved after the break with the introduction of Dybala and Karsdorp as Romelu Lukaku found his 11th Serie A goal of the season to a negative streak of five scoreless matches.

Team News:

De Rossi will only make one change to the formation that won in San Siro because Bryan Cristante is injured and will be replaced by Edoardo Bove.

Celik, Spinazzola, Mancini and Smalling were all rested at the weekend and therefore will start against AC Milan.

Paredes and Pellegrini will play in midfield, and Aouar will probably be used in the second half.

El Shaarawy, Lukaku and Dybala will form the front three; Tammy Abraham will be on the bench.

For AC Milan Tomori will return from suspension and will play with Matteo Gabbia in the centre of the defence. Calabria and Hernandez will be the full-backs and Maignan, who did not play against Sassuolo, will return in goal.

Bennacer and Reijnders will be the two midfielders, while Pulisic, Loftus-Cheek and Leao will support the lone striker Giroud. Chukwueze, whose form has improved dramatically in the last month, will almost certainly be used in the second half.

Roma vs AC Milan Odds:

Despite the first leg’s defeat the visitors, AC Milan, are favourite (6/4) to win the match.

The Rossoneri have beaten Roma at the ‘Stadio Olimpico’ in Serie A this season (2-1), and are second in the league’s away table.

Pioli’s men are unbeaten in the last four matches against Roma played in the Italian capital, having won three of them, more than the previous 16 against the Giallorossi (W2, D7, L7).

The draw (odds 5/2) is considered the less likely result but it would be enough to qualify Roma to the Europa League semi-finals.

The Giallorossi have lost only home match since mid-January (4-2 against leaders Inter), whereas the visitors have been eliminated on each of the last eight occasions in which they have lost at home in the first leg of a double-header in major European competitions.

A win for Roma pays 7/4 as the Giallorossi are looking to win both matches of a major European competition for the first time since the 2020-21 Europa League round of 16 against Shakhtar Donetsk, something they have never managed to do against an Italian team.

Odds are almost similar for Over 2.5 Goals (4/5) and Under 2.5 (10/11).

AC Milan have conceded 29 away goals in Serie A (the fourth-worst defensive record), whereas Roma have scored at least once in the previous 32 home games in all competitions.

Both Teams To Score @ 4/6

AC Milan have scored at least two goals in 11 of their last 12 away games in Serie A, but their defensive frailties were, once again, exposed at the weekend.

On the road, the Rossoneri average 1.7 goals conceded x game in Serie A, but equally they’ve never failed to score on the road in the league.

In the first leg, AC Milan took 25 shots without scoring, that was the second time this season that they had so many without scoring in a European match (also 25 against Newcastle in the Champions League in September).

Roma have got an extraordinary record at home in European competitions, having lost just one of the previous 24 Europa League games played in the capital.

The last time they were defeated at home in a European knockout round (in 2017, by Villarreal), Daniele De Rossi was still playing.

The hosts have won 15 and drawn three of the last 18 knockout matches played at home, defeating clubs of the calibre of Liverpool, Manchester United, Barcelona and Bayer Leverkusen in recent years.

Over 52.5 Booking Points @ 5/6

This would be the 38th time Italian teams played each other in a continental competition, and 30 of these games produced two goals or less.

An early goal from AC Milan might make the game very cagey, but in this tie Italy’s third (Roma) and second (AC Milan) best attacks face each other and for both clubs the main objective of the season is reaching the final in Dublin.

But being an all-Italian tie this could be of course a very feisty and tense affair.

There are only six players (Spinazzola and Paredes for the hosts and Maignan, Calabria, Leao and Musah for AC Milan) at risk of missing the semi-final if they get booked.

In the first leg there have been four bookings, but both league games this year registered five cards, including a red for Tomori back in September.

Daniele Fisichella primarily covers Italian Football for us here at Betfred Insights. You can check out all of Daniele's Football Betting Tips here each week, along with those of our other Football writers...

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