If Bayern against Madrid isn’t enough for you – and providing you’re still awake, of course – then perhaps AC Milan against Chelsea is just what you looking for as Antonio Conte comes up against a familiar opponent. Below is our match preview, prediction and betting tips.
Game: AC Milan vs Chelsea
Venue: US Bank Stadium, Minnesota, USA
Kick-off: 02:35am, Thursday 4th August
Despite a strong start to their pre-season, Milan struggled against their other English opponent so far. Liverpool ran out comfortable 2-0 winners against the Italians, who previously had topped Bordeaux before beating Bayern Munich on penalties after a thrilling 3-3 draw.
Antonio Conte and Chelsea have been less experimental than other sides in this competition as they’ve declined to make a host of substitutions at any point during their pre-season games. Every line up has had a good mix of youngsters vying for a start and experienced names and it’s paid off with a resilient win over Liverpool and (in the end) and OK showing against Madrid.
Chelsea struggled in the first half hour against Real having fielded a weaker line-up than their opponents, but the later introduction of Batshuayi, Cuadrado and particularly Hazard gave Madrid a lot to think about, and results in the Blues winning the second half 2-0.
Match Predictions and Betting Tips
I’d like to be able to quote a wider range of bookmakers for you, but Bet365 are the hottest on the ICC so far. Odds have been to slow to go up, and comparisons sites are neglecting to include them until later on, so we will continue to use 365 as we recognise that Chelsea are the favourites to win this game at odds of 1/1. You can never rule out any possibility when two big clubs meet – especially in a friendly – and so you may want to consider Milan at best odds of 13/5, whilst the draw is on offer at odds of 5/2 all with Bet365.
Things have changed in Italy with the re-rise of Juventus and Napoli, and Milan have slipped down the pecking order. They’ve been on a downward slope for some time and I think it’s more visible that other. As big a squad as they have, I struggle to pick the stand out players. Bacca has been the main man but he is absent from the squad for this US tour, which is perhaps ominous with Arsenal, West Ham and Barcelona circling.
I don’t enjoy being able to look at a side like AC Milan – a side I grew up watching in Europe as much of a force as anyone – as a much lesser team than the likes of Chelsea, but I think they are.
If the two were to meet competitively this season, I’d have no hesitation in offering up Chelsea. But this is pre-season where anything can happen, but that’s the only small factor that places doubt in my mind.
Chelsea -0.5AH at odds of 1/1 with Bet365 is my free betting tip here.
Conte is A-OK facing AC
He may no longer be in charge of the old lady, but Antonio Conte has an exemplary record against AC Milan. The Italian will be going for his 10th win in a row against the men in red and black stripes, having absolutely dominated in recent domestic meetings. Milan have triumphed in just one of the last 19 meetings against the man himself.
To know that AC Milan have been beaten by any team in the world in nine straight meetings just further demonstrates the feeling of ‘how the mighty have fallen’ that I have. With their biggest goal threat absent and Chelsea showing glimpses of Conte’s Italy like organisation, I think AC will struggle to really break the Blues down here. Even in a friendly.
Free Betting Tip
Chelsea -0.5AH – 0.000 with Bet365
Correct Score Prediction
2-0 - 11/1 with Coral
Anytime Goal-Scorer Prediction
Michy Batshuayi - 6/4 with ladbrokes