With Inter Milan already crowned champions of the Italian League, Atalanta through to the Champions League, the battle for the remaining two spots for the Champions League goes down the wire as Juventus, Napoli and AC Milan all standing a chance to qualify, BSNSports.com.ng reports
Milan missed the opportunity to secure Champions League qualification last weekend and will have to go again this Sunday. However, taking on Atalanta away from home, it’s an uphill battle, .
The Rossoneri came from two convincing and big wins but still failed to beat Cagliari under the San Siro floodlights. Sunday’s clash is thus the final chance for them to make something out of this season, which started so well.
In his pre-match press conference for the clash with the Bergamo side, Pioli discussed what Milan need to come away with all three points tomorrow. He also made it clear that the players have been fully focused during the week.
It’s a crucial game for Milan, as mentioned, and the players will have to be at their best to get a result from this one. Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Mattia Gabbia will miss the game due to injury, while Ante Rebic is at risk of missing out due to a minor issue.
Juventus go into Sunday’s final-day showdown at Bologna knowing qualification for the Champions League is out of their hands given they currently sit fifth in the Serie A table.
Pirlo’s side are relying on one of second-placed Atalanta or mid-table Hellas Verona doing them a favour in the race for the top four. Atalanta sit three points ahead of Juventus but cannot be caught because of their head-to-head record, and host third-placed AC Milan, who are only one point ahead of Juve, in third.
Napoli, who have won nine of their last 12 games to leapfrog Juve into fourth, are also a point ahead of Pirlo’s men. Should either Napoli or AC Milan drop points in their final game of the season, victory for Juventus at a Bologna side without a win in their last six games would be enough for them to scrape into the Champions League qualifying spots ahead of one of their rivals.
Otherwise, Juventus will miss out on Europe’s top table for the first time in a decade – and barely a month after leading the charge with the now-defunct breakaway European Super League which claimed to play host to Europe’s leading clubs.
Either they, AC Milan or Napoli will drop into the Europa League qualification spots come Sunday, where Lazio have already guaranteed their place in next season’s group stage.
Roma, whose poor form has seen head coach Paulo Fonseca replaced by Jose Mourinho for next season, look most likely to take up the Europa Conference League spot by finishing seventh, although they could still be leapfrogged by eighth-placed Sassuolo, who sit two points behind them.