Milan march on with comfortable win over Pescara

Posted by Sumeet Paul

Paolo Bruno/Getty ImagesMilan and Mario Balotelli were clearly a cut above Pescara and Guiseppe Sculli.

As the travelling Milan fans basked in the Stadio Adratico sunshine on Wednesday, the Rossoneri marched on in their pursuit of Champions League football for next season with a comfortable 4-0 win against Pescara.

In truth, it was all too easy for Massimiliano Allegri, who could even afford to rotate the squad and rest key players as the result was safely secured with ample time remaining. Mario Balotelli made it 11 goals in 11 games, with his brace including yet another successful spot kick.

-Video: Pescara 0-4 AC Milan (UK, Ire)
-Balo, Milan may face Manchester City
-Puyol rejects Milan speculation


The Italian international maintained his perfect record from the spot since joining the club, and his overall play demonstrated exactly why the move was not only beneficial to Milan, but also to the player himself.

The former Manchester City striker has been ridiculed for his lack of interest in the defensive facets of the game. However, countless times on Wednesday evening he was chasing back and sacrificing himself for the good of the team and clearly revelled in his enhanced role in the absence of regular starters around him.

Elsewhere, having raised concerns with their performance on the weekend in a 1-0 home win over Torino, the midfield trio were largely untested but executed their roles perfectly with both Sulley Muntari and Mathieu Flamini getting on the scoresheet.

There has been speculation the Frenchman would be renewing his contract with the club. On the basis of his recent goal-scoring streak, as well as his overall contribution, it would seem a sensible decision, albeit within the parameters of the new wage structure.

Muntari was equally as impressive, with his distribution setting Milan away on numerous attacking moves. Despite not being a like-for-like replacement for the injured Riccardo Montolivo, he repaid the faith placed in him by Allegri in playing in that role.

One area where the Milan coach will potentially be criticised, is his decision not to introduce the likes of Bryan Cristante and Bartosz Salamon in the latter stages of the game. With the result safe, it would have been an ideal situation to bring the youngsters into the game and assess how they could handle playing in a league game situation.

Nevertheless, the kept moved Milan four points clear of Fiorentina, who defeated Siena 1-0 in the Tuscan Derby. It was vital the Rossoneri carried out a professional job in what seemed at times a training ground match, as the pressure is firmly on Vincenzo Montella's men to avoid slipups.

The results set up an intriguing last fortnight of the season. The Rossoneri host Roma at San Siro on Saturday night, before visiting Siena on the last day of the season. Meanwhile, the Viola host relegation-threatened Palermo before a season finale away at Pescara.

With games running out and Milan continuing to clinch maximum points, a win on Saturday will ensure there are no last-day nerves and that their place in the Champions League is secure.

Who was your man of the match against Pescara? Can Milan clinch third place on Saturday, or do you expect it to go down to the wire?

For all the latest Milan and Serie A news, you can follow me on Twitter @italiafooty

ESPN Conversations