HomeUKMilan v Tottenham: Champions League last-16 first leg – live

Milan v Tottenham: Champions League last-16 first leg – live

Key events

A quick recap: Despite the best attempts of Fraser Forster who pulled off two saves – one of them bordering on miraculous – in the build-up, Tottenham went behind to an early Brahim Diaz header from no distance at all, the Spaniard showing great initiative to follow-up his own shot. Milan have been fairly comfortable ever since but Spurs have threatened at times, occasionally from one of their many set-pieces, and will fancy their chances of scoring a goal or two in the second half.

Half-time: AC Milan 1-0 Tottenham Hotspur

45+3 min: Milan scramble clear as Tottenham get forward again and then the visitors win another free-kick in a good position as Harry Kane leans into Simon Kjaer and falls over. Son sends the ball into the penalty area, Milan head clear and Romero is penalised for offside. It’s time for a break.

45+1 min: Not known for his lightning pace, Olivier Giroud still manages to get in behind the Spurs defence to latch on to a 60-yard punt downfield. With a better touch, he’d almost certainly have put his side two up. Spurs get away with it.

45 min: A low Son shot is saved well by Tatarusanu and Harry Kane hits the cross-bar with his follow-up. The ball bounces down and doesn’t cross the line but it wouldn’t have counted anyway because Son was offside in the build-up.

44 min: Oliver Skipp and Pape Sarr have performed pretty well in the heart of the Tottenham midfield in this first half, working diligently and industriously but without doing anything particularly eye-catching.

42 min: Alexis Saelemaekers does superbly to get back and prevent a Son cross, giving away a corner in the process. Perisic’s floated delivery is comfortably caught by Ciprian Tatarusanu.

39 min: Theo Hernandez is looking a constant threat down the left-hand side, over- and under-lapping with Rafael Leao and getting into very advanced positions. Not for the first time in this game he gets the better of Romero, getting in behind the right-back and drilling the ball towards the near post. His hands behind his back to avoid giving away a penalty for handball, Eric Dier knees the ball out for a corner from which nothing comes.

38 min: The timely intervention of an Oliver Skipp big toe puts an end to a Milan attack and Cristian Romero takes possession of the ball.

37 min: Kane is fouled by Simon Kjaer, who wrestles him to the ground and perhaps catches him with a kick as the pair grapple near the halfway line.

35 min: Spurts dominate possession in the middle third for a spell but are unable to settle on the ball or find an opening to get it forward as various Milan players swarm around them like angry bees.

32 min: Kulusevski receives the ball out on the right touchline but is once again unable to get the better of Malick Thiaw, who robs him of possession and advances upfield. The ref blows for a stoppage so Sandro Tonali, who is on the floor, can receive treatment. Tottenham’s players are unhappy because the AC Milan midfielder didn’t have a head injury.

30 min: Harry Kane goes down holding his face after shipping an accidental arm in the face from Simon Kjaer as the pair contested a Perisic cross to the far post. There’s a short break in play while he receives treatment.

28 min: Rafel Leao glides – and it really does look like he’s gliding – down the inside right for Milan after Son had failed to pick out Harry Kane with a pass. The Portuguese international plays the ball inside but Tottenham clear their lines.

27 min: Emerson tries his luck with a shot from distance but fires the ball straight at Milan goalkeeper Ciprian Tatarusanu.

25 min: Son takes what already seems like his 100th set-piece of the game already but his corner delivery is cleared.

24 min: Saelemaekers fouls Clement Lenglet before the Spurs defender can get a cross into the Milan penalty area from the left. The ball’s sent to the near post by Son and Perisic flicks it on. Tottenham win a corner.

22 min: Milan break upfield at speed on the counter, with Saelemaekers being released up the right flank by a Giroud diagonal from deep. He’s dispossessed and a promising move comes to nothing.

21 min: Free-kick for Spurs, wide on the left. Son sends another delivery into the mixer, where Eric Dier gets in front of his marker but sends a header flashing wide.

19 min: A sore looking Kjaer is escorted to the sideline by two medical staff, where he gets a brief pep-talk from his manager Stefano Pioli before returning to the field of play.

17 min: Heung-min Son sends another free-kick from a long way out into the Milan penalty area, where Milan’s defenders are lined up very deep. The ball’s headed clear and there’s a break in play so the man who cleared it, Simon Kjaer, can receive treatment for what looks like a head wound.

15 min: Spurs are being outnumbered in midfield and being put under serious pressure any time they have the ball. That Diaz goal prompted the San Siro to erupt and the home players are feeding off the emotions of their happy crowd. SPurs can’t afford to let this tie get away from them in these early stages.

13 min: Tottenham look seriously rattled after that early setback but go close to equalising from a corner. A Son free-kick is flicked on by Eric Dier but the ball carries through straight into the breadbasket of Milan goalkeeper Ciprian Tatarusanu.

8 min: Theo Hernandez beat a weak Cristian Romero in the air in the build-up and fired a low diagonal that Forster got down to keep out with his chest. Still on the ground, Forster somehow got up to get an outstretched hand to Diaz’s rifled follow-up from close range. The ball looped up in the air towards the cross-bar but Diaz had followed-up his own shot and was on hand to head home from a couple of inches out.

GOAL! AC Milan 1-0 Tottenham Hotspur (Diaz 7)

Milan lead! Despite an unbelievable save from Fraser Forster in the immediate build-up, Brahim Diaz follows up his own effort to leather Milan into an early lead.

Brahim Diaz of AC Milan scores past Fraser Forster. Photograph: Valerio Pennicino/UEFA/Getty Images
Diaz celebrates scoring their first goal.
Diaz celebrates scoring their first goal. Photograph: Daniele Mascolo/Reuters

5 min: Milan play the ball out from the back, slowly and steadily, with Rade Krunic playing it wide to Alexis Saelemaekers as they enter the Tottenham half. Clement Lenglet eventually puts a stop to the collective Milan gallop with an aggressive but fair tackle.

4 min: Dejan Kulusevski tries to jink and jag his way down the right flank but is dispossessed by a good tackle from Malick Thiaw that prompts cheers and a round of applause from the home fans. Thou shalt not pass! Or cross!

2 min: Tottenham play keep-ball in the opening minute but it’s Milan who surge forward first. Emerson Royal brings down Rafeal Leao illegally and Milan win an early free-kick in a good position, about 45 yards from the Spurs goal. Nothing comes of it.

AC Milan v Tottenham Hotspur is go …

1 min: Reffing his first Champions League knockout match, Sandro Scharer blows his whistle and Harry Kane gets the ball rolling. Tottenham play in white shirts, shorts and socks, while their hosts wear predominantly black kit with red stripes.

Not long now: The teams are out on the San Siro sward, where there’ll be a minute’s silence for the distressingly high number of victims of the Turkey-Syria earthquake ahead of kick-off. It’s time for the pre-match handshakes, exchange of club pennants and coin-toss. Kick-off is imminent …

Some amusingly chippy reader correspondence: “So Poundland Mourinho, aka Antonio Conte, returns to San Siro,” writes Yash Gupta. “On one hand this should be a walk in the park for Spurs but with tactical genius Conte, who allows opponents to have total midfield control, this suddenly feels a different tie altogether.

“Sarr and Skipp are very good players but it is bit of a suicide mission at the best of times. Tottenham’s midfield mostly gets totally dominated even when Bentancur, who is the best midifielder in the team, plays. To sum this up – if Spurs win this, well Milan are crap. But if Spurs lose, adios Conte. I’d like Poch to come home.”

Harsh but fair? Or harsh but unfair considering nobody’s kicked a ball yet? I’m not sure who else Conte is supposed to play in the absence of Bentancur and Hojbjerg and I have no idea why you think this should be a walk in the park for Spurs, even without their injuries or suspensions. I think they could get battered but suspect Fraser Forster might have a big game in goal for them tonight tonight. Anyway, time will tell …

Soundtracked by Gala’s Freed From Desire (it’s a photo so you’ll have to take my word for it), Harry Kane warms up ahead of tonight’s match at the San Siro.
Soundtracked by Gala’s Freed From Desire (it’s a picture so you’ll have to take my word for it), Harry Kane warms up ahead of tonight’s match at the San Siro. Photograph: Marco Bertorello/AFP/Getty Images

Elsewhere in the Champions League: Paris Saint-Germain are hosting Bayern Munich in the French capital and have handed a start to 16-year-old defensive midfielder Warren Zaïre-Emery in what could be a titanic battle. It’s the youngster’s 12th appearancoe of the season but his first time in a Champions League starting line-up. Daniel Harris has the latest …

Those teams: Stefano Pioli names an unchanged side from the one that beat Torino by the only of the game on Friday night, while Antonio Conte makes five changes to the side that got walloped at Leicester the next day.

While Sarr and Skipp come into midfield in two enforced changes, Clement Lenglet, Emerson Royal and Cristian Romero come into the defence. Japhet Tanganga and Ben Davies are dropped, while Deadline Day signing Pedro Porro also makes way for Cristian Romero after an underwhelming debut.

Tottenham right-back Pedro Porro drops to the Tottenham bench after failing to impress in his debut for the club against Leicester.
Tottenham right-back Pedro Porro drops to the Tottenham bench after failing to impress in his debut for the club against Leicester. Photograph: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

AC Milan v Tottenham Hotspur line-ups

AC Milan: Tatarusanu, Kalulu,Kjaer, Thiaw, Hernandez, Tonali, Krunic, Saelemaekers, Diaz, Giroud, Leao.

Subs: Mirante, Nava, Calabria, Ballo, Rebic, Origi, Messias, Pobega, Gabbia, De Ketelaere

Tottenham Hotspur: Forster, Royal, Dier, Romero, Lenglet, Skipp, Sarr, Perisic, Kulusevski, Son, Kane.

Subs: Austin, Whiteman, Sanchez, Richarlison, Danjuma, Porro, Tanganga, Moura, Davies, Devine.

Tottenham midfield news: The teams are in and in the absence of Rodrigo Bentancur and Pierre Emile Hojbjerg, it looks like Antonio Conte will be starting Oliver Skipp and Pape Sarr, newither of whom have ever started a Champions League game, in the heart of the Spurs midfield, with Eric Dier remaining in the back three, sandwiched between Cristian Romero and Clement Lenglet.

And over to you Stefano Pioli …

“Playing in the Champions League gives a lot of energy, it gives a lot of motivation and a great desire to play this match,” said the Milan manager. “It’s a very important round, it’s a round that will be decided over two games, but we know that starting the first one well would be a big step forward.”

On his team’s recent run of poor form: “It is inevitable that we have suffered a lot from the negative results, the victory against Torino has lifted our morale. Beyond the victory against Torino when the Champions League arrives, it’s the Champions League. It doesn’t matter how you get there, who gets there feeling better, who gets there worse.

“If we stay at these levels it means that we are strong and Tottenham are strong, so we have to try to do better starting tomorrow night. First of all I hope to change the results compared to previous experiences with English teams. We will find intensity, rhythm, physicality, therefore many duels, including physical ones.”

AC Milan head coach Stefano Pioli was in bullish form as he spoke to the media yesterday.
AC Milan head coach Stefano Pioli was in reasonably bullish form as he spoke to the media yesterday. Photograph: Claudio Villa/AC Milan/Getty Images

Antonio Conte’s pre-match thoughts

“If you are aiming for something important you need to have stability,” said the Tottenham Hotspur in his pre-match press conference. “You can’t have these up-and-downs. I’m focusing on this. It’s not as easy here to be focused on every game. I want to change this.

“We lack consistency this season. I always talk about it with my players. It’s difficult to remain focused on every game. Playing under pressure all the time is good for some players and not for others. We are working on it. We want to make our players more resilient, but there are factors beyond our control like injuries to important players.”

Antonio Conteaddresses the ladies and gentlemen of the Fourth Estate in his pre-match press conference.
Antonio Conteaddresses the ladies and gentlemen of the Fourth Estate in his pre-match press conference. Photograph: Tottenham Hotspur FC/Getty Images

Tonight’s match officials

Swiss referee Sandro Scharer leads tonight’s team of match officials.
Swiss referee Sandro Scharer leads tonight’s team of match officials. Photograph: Eurasia Sport Images/Getty Images

David Hytner: As Antonio Conte endures all manner of agonies – starting with his own health and taking in that of his Tottenham team, particularly the midfield, which is in crisis before Tuesday night’s Champions League last-16, first leg against Milan – he can console himself with one thought. His opposite number, Stefano Pioli, may well have it even worse. Read on …

Early AC Milan team news

Goalkeeper Mike Maignan, full-back Alessandro Florenzi, central defender Fikayo Tomori and midfielder Ismail Bennacer make up the Italian side’s current contingent of the lame and halt but Tomori and Bennacer could feature this evening.

Anyone hoping to see the evergreen Zlatan Ibrahimovic playing for Milan will be disappointed, as the Swedish striker was not included in the Champions League squad the club submitted to Uefa. Chelsea loanee Tiémoué Bakayoko (remember him?) was also left out of their 25.

ZLatan Ibrahimovic, 41, has yet to play for Milan this season but did feature on the bench against Torino on Friday night after recovering from knee surgery. He has not been named in their Champions League squad.
ZLatan Ibrahimovic, 41, has yet to play for Milan this season but did feature on the bench against Torino on Friday night after recovering from knee surgery. He has not been named in their Champions League squad. Photograph: Fabrizio Carabelli/LiveMedia/REX/Shutterstock

Early Tottenham Hotspur team news

Tottenham’s preparations for this game suffered a weekend hammer-blow when Rodrigo Bentancur suffered a season-ending ACL injury. The Uruguayan midfielder has been one of Tottenham’s best performers this season and his absence will be keenly felt tonight, not least because his most likely replacements Yves Bissouma and Pierre Emile Hojbjerg are also unavailable.

Bissouma is currently sidelined with a foot injury, while Hojbjerg must sit this one out on the Naughty Step following an accumulation of yellow cards. Eric Dier, Pape Sarr or Oliver Skipp could deputise. Spurs goalkeeper Hugo Lloris and winger Ryan Sessegnon are also out with injuries.

Having scored Tottenham Hotspur’s only goal of the game, Rodrigo Bentancur suffered an ACL injury at Leicester’s King Power Stadium last weekend.
Having scored Tottenham Hotspur’s only goal of the game, Rodrigo Bentancur suffered an ACL injury at Leicester’s King Power Stadium last weekend. Photograph: Molly Darlington/Reuters

Champions League: AC Milan v Tottenham Hotspur

Old Big Cup is back! And tonight in the San Siro, AC Milan host Tottenham Hotspur in the first leg of what promises to be a fascinating encounter. In decent form but travelling to Italy on the back of a worryingly emphatic defeat at the hands of Leicester City, Antonio Conte’s men will be hosted by an AC Milan team that beat Torino on Friday, their first win in eight games in all competitions. It is a run that included three consecutive league defeats, as well as an exit from the Coppa Italia and defeat in the Italian Super Cup.

Stefano Pioli’s side currently sit fifth in the Serie A table, a scarcely credible 18 points behind runaway leaders Napoli. Tottenham occupy the same position in the Premier League and sit 12 points their old friends Arsenal in first. Kick-off at the San Siro is at 8pm (GMT) but we’ll have plenty of team news and build-up in the meantime.

Merchandise on sale outside the San Siro stadium in Milan.
Merchandise on sale outside San Siro stadium in Milan. Photograph: Paul Currie/Shutterstock

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