Bacca and Niang send Mi­lan up to third

The Sun (Malaysia) - - SPORTS -

CAR­LOS BACCA scored for the sec­ond game in a row and M’Baye Niang net­ted from the penalty spot in a dis­jointed per­for­mance as AC Mi­lan beat Lazio 2-0 at the San Siro yes­ter­day.

Bacca struck eight min­utes be­fore half­time hav­ing notched the late match-win­ner in Fri­day night’s 1-0 suc­cess at Sam­p­do­ria.

Niang sealed the win after earn­ing and then slot­ting away a spot­kick on an evening in which his per­for­mance swung be­tween the sub­lime and ridicu­lous.

The vic­tory, a third in five games this sea­son, pro­vi­sion­ally moved Mi­lan up to third ahead of the rest of the mid­week pro­gramme.

Lazio were off to a pos­i­tive start with Mi­lan’s teenage goal­keeper Gian­luigi Don­narumma forced into a cou­ple of early saves from Filip Djord­je­vic and Marco Parolo, while Danilo Cataldi was off tar­get for the vis­i­tors in an en­ter­pris­ing first 10 min­utes.

Don­narumma’s best save then came from a Sergej Milinkovic-Savic header on 12 min­utes.

But from there the hosts started to take con­trol, with French for­ward Niang look­ing lively, hav­ing a shot saved by goal­keeper Thomas Strakosha be­fore turn­ing his marker only to fail to look up and pick out a team­mate with a cross-shot that Al­ba­nian Strakosha dealt with com­fort­ably.

Mi­lan took the lead out of the blue as Bacca ran from the half­way line onto a Ju­raj Kucka through ball when Lazio’s high back­line was caught out by a mis­take from Parolo.

The Colom­bian Bacca, who was re­stored to the start­ing line-up after com­ing off the bench against Sam­p­do­ria, took his time and picked his spot to find the bot­tom cor­ner on 37 min­utes.

Niang should have killed the game on 56 min­utes but teed up with an open goal by Bacca he some­how barely made con­tact with the ball and Lazio breathed a sigh of re­lief.

Less than 60 sec­onds later only a last-ditch tackle by Gabriel Paletta pre­vented Lazio sub­sti­tute Keita Balde Diao from mak­ing Niang and Mi­lan pay.

The 21-year-old French youth in­ter­na­tional Niang then sent a woe­ful shot out for a throw-in.

But he gave a glimpse of his un­doubted po­ten­tial by shrug­ging off a marker be­fore sting­ing Strakosha’s fin­gers with a ven­emous shot from dis­tance.

And Niang won and then con­verted a penalty as Ste­fan Radu was pe­nalised for han­dling the striker’s cross.

The mav­er­ick for­ward still had time to slice a dread­ful ef­fort off tar­get as he re­mained cen­tre stage right to the end. – AFP


AC Mi­lan for­ward Car­los Bacca cel­e­brates after scor­ing against Lazio yes­ter­day.

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