Pioli uses Ibra to send transfer message to Rebic and Origi

AC Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic will make his first minute debut tonight against Udinese. Pioli has chosen him over Rebic and Origi.

Tonight AC Milan will be facing Udinese away from San Siro. The Rossoneri have lost many points in the league in recent matches and risk Champions League qualification for the upcoming season. Olivier Giroud is suspended for tonight’s match against Udinese so coach Stefano Pioli will rely on Zlatan Ibrahimovic to lead the attack.

The 41-year-old Swedish striker will make his first minute debut for this season. A long knee injury, followed by surgery, has kept Ibra out for many months. He has tasted progressively more minutes in the last three games and is finally ready to lead the attack from the first minute. At the same time his start is a direct message to Rebic and Origi.

The fact that Pioli prefers to choose a 41-year-old rather than one between two players that are supposed to be at their prime conditions testifies the lack of trust in Ante Rebic and Divock Origi. It is hard to dispute the decision of the Italian coach after taking into consideration the goal statistics of the two forwards.

Ante Rebic has scored only three goals this season and has not found the back of the net since last October. Divock Origi has only two goals to his name with the last one being in January against Monza. Disastrous numbers for the two Rossoneri strikers that should have given a bigger contribution for a team that aimed to repeat itself in Serie A.

AC Milan will try to sell both Rebic and Origi at the end of the season. The Liverpool striker earns over 4 million per season but he has market in England and Turkey as well. The situation is much more complicated for the Croatian winger. Rebic earns 3.5 million per season and is not willing to negotiate on lower figures. So far Milan have received no approach for him.

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