SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 1 - 25 Aug 2019 (17.00 UK)
Udinese 1 - 0 Milan
Becao 72 (U)
Dacia Arena

Rodrigo Becao had the perfect Serie A debut, scoring the winner as Udinese beat Marco Giampaolo’s toothless Milan 1-0.

There were no new faces in Marco Giampaolo’s Rossoneri squad, as the Coach preferred to work with those he’d had throughout pre-season, but Lucas Biglia, Pepe Reina, Theo Hernandez and Mattia Caldara were injured, moving Suso to a trequartista role. The Friulani surprisingly dropped Rodrigo De Paul amid transfer gossip, but Rodrigo Becao and Mato Jajalo stepped in.

Fabio Borini in a midfield role risked an own goal when deflecting an Ignacio Pussetto header over the bar with his knee.

William Troost-Ekong had to time his sliding tackle absolutely perfectly when stopping Krzysztof Piatek as he ran clear on goal just inside the penalty area.

An acrobatic Alessio Romagnoli back-heel flick on a corner flashed wide, Seko Fofana’s volley was charged down and Lucas Paqueta got back for a crucial challenge on Rolando Mandragora.

Gianluigi Donnarumma got away with a poor defensive header on Pussetto, as Kevin Lasagna smashed the finish over an open goal rather than attempt a delicate lob.

There was tension in first half stoppages when Castillejo seemed to deflect a cross with his arm, but after a VAR silent review, it was confirmed the contact came just outside the penalty area.

The first genuine shots on target came after 49 minutes, Donnarumma smothering the Mandragora effort from distance and needing two attempts to get the Fofana curler under control.

Borini’s strike from a very tight angle was audacious and not far off target, but Udinese were livelier in attack, as Fofana and Mato Jajalo had pops from the edge of the box.

Lasagna should’ve done better with his header on Pussetto’s cross from the right, but Udinese broke the deadlock the moment Rodrigo De Paul came off the bench.

It was the Argentine’s corner kick that found debutant Rodrigo Becao for a powerful header at the near post. Not only was it a goal on his Serie A debut, but it was the first goal of his professional career.

Only a spectacular Donnarumma flying save managed to stop Lasagna making it 2-0, as the fierce shot on the turn from 12 yards was going under the bar.

There was controversy when Alessio Romagnoli’s glancing header struck Samir on the arm, but after an on-field VAR review, the referee judged that under the new rules, his arm was low enough for it to be considered involuntary.

Milan ended the match without a single shot on target.

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Udinese: Musso; Becao, Troost-Ekong, Samir; Stryger-Larsen, Fofana (Nestorovski 71), Mandragora, Jajalo, Pezzella (Sema 81); Pussetto (De Paul 71); Lasagna
Milan: G Donnarumma; Calabria, Musacchio, Romagnoli, Rodriguez; Borini (Kessie 60), Calhanoglu, Paqueta (Bennacer 76); Suso; Piatek, Castillejo
Ref: Pasqua