Carlos Bacca’s rabona stunner and M’Baye Niang saw Milan beat Carpi 2-1 for their first Coppa Italia semi-final in four years.
The Rossoneri will face either Serie B outfit Spezia or Lega Pro side Alessandria in the semi-final, so have a very good chance of making the Final. Carpi made their first ever visit to San Siro, but missed Igor Bubnjic, Marco Borriello, Ryder Matos and suspended Jerry Mbakogu. The Rossoneri had Mario Balotelli on the bench after three months out, but Luiz Adriano and Alessio Cerci dropped pending transfers.
Cristian Zapata nodded an early corner just wide, Jack Bonaventura unable to turn in at the back post, and Keisuke Honda’s free kick was parried.
Carlos Bacca broke the deadlock when he anticipated a defender on Honda’s through ball, dribbled round the goalkeeper and scored with a cheeky rabona finish into the empty net. The Colombian famously tried and failed to score a similar effort against Palermo, prompting the fury of Coach Sinisa Mihajlovic.
Zeljko Brkic prevented a second with a one-handed save on Juraj Kucka’s angled drive, but Bacca burst down the left and crossed for M’Baye Niang to tap in.
Carpi had the ball in the net with Kevin Lasagna, but only after play had been halted for a push, and emerged from their shells towards half-time.
The minnows made two changes and they immediately paid off, as Lasagna sprinted from his own half and rolled across for the unmarked substitute Matteo Mancosu to score within four minutes of his Carpi debut.
Kucka blasted off target from an extremely tight angle, infuriating Bacca who wanted a pull-back from six yards, but Lasagna also ballooned over when he should’ve set up one of two teammates in better positions.
Kevin-Prince Boateng and Lasagna tested the goalkeepers, while Bonaventura’s free kick skimmed the crossbar. Luca Antonelli pulled back for Honda, but the finish was deflected wide of an open goal by desperate defending.
Bacca turned on the after-burners to sprint past two defenders, but when clear on goal he slowed down and Gaetano Letizia nudged him in the back – the referee waved away furious penalty appeals.
Milan 2-1 Carpi
Scorers: Bacca 14 (M), Niang 29 (M), Mancosu 50 (C)
Milan: Abbiati; De Sciglio, Zapata, A Romagnoli, Antonelli; Honda, Kucka (Bertolacci 72), Montolivo, Bonaventura; Niang (Boateng 58), Bacca
Carpi: Brkic; Zaccardo (Crimi 46), S Romagnoli, Gagliolo, Letizia; Pasciuti, Marrone, Bianco (Mancosu 46), Gabriel Silva; Lollo (Martinho 78); Lasagna
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