Empoli-Milan: Injury problems force Gattuso to change three players

AC Milan will travel to Empoli today but coach Gattuso could be forced to change a chunk of his usual lineup due to physical problems.

The Rossoneri are back to training after the disappointing draw with Atalanta but the situation is not looking good. In yesterday’s press conference, Gennaro Gattuso confirmed that several of his players are having physical problems and risk skipping the Empoli match. The coach could face big problems in attack especially with Gonzalo Higuain suffering a slight flexor strain.

According to recent reports by Sky Sport, Rino is set to make a couple of changes in defense. The Italian coach is considering Ignazio Abate and Diego Laxalt from the first minute to replace Davide Calabria and Ricardo Rodriguez. The Swiss full back offered a great performance against Atalanta but Gattuso wants the team to be more lethal up front and Laxalt can help more.

No changes for the central duo, Alessio Romagnoli and Mateo Musacchio will start in the middle. New arrival Mattia Caldara is not yet fit and has been left out of the 24-man squad list. The 24 year old defender risks losing even Sunday’s encounter with Sassuolo.

Only the midfield is guaranteed to be the same with the usual trio Lucas Biglia, Kessie and Bonaventura. Very complicated instead the situation in attack. Argentine striker Higuain is battling with a muscular problem and will probably start from the bench. Patrick Cutrone has returned to training but Gattuso doesn’t want is reluctant to risk him. Fabio Borini has been tried in the centre forward position however a final decision will be taken before the game. Samu Castillejo was tried on the left in the place of Hakan Calhanoglu but with Higuain out Gattuso had abandoned this idea and the Turkish will start again.

AC Milan 24-man squad list for Empoli

GOALKEEPERS: Donnarumma A., Donnarumma G., Reina
DEFENDERS: Abate, Calabria, Laxalt, Musacchio, Rodriguez, Romagnoli, Simic, Zapata
MIDFIELDERS: Bakayoko, Bertolacci, Biglia, Bonaventura, Kessie, Mauri
FORWARDS: Borini, Calhanoglu, Castillejo, Cutrone, Haliliovc, Higuain, Suso.

EMPOLI (4-3-1-2): Terraciano; Di Lorenzo, Silvestre, Maietta, Veseli; Benaccer, Capetti, Krunic; Traoré; La Gumina, Caputo. Allenatore: Andreazzoli.

AC MILAN (4-3-3): Donnarumma; Calabria (Abate), Musacchio, Romagnoli, Rodriguez (Laxal); Kessié, Biglia, Bonaventura; Suso, (Borini) Cutrone, Calhanoglu.

Read here Cesc Fabregas message to AC Milan

Read here Leonardo sends warning message to Gattuso