Ante Rebic Key to Improved AC Milan Form

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Ante Rebic
Ante Rebic of AC Milan celebrates after scoring the his goal during the Serie A match between AC Milan and Torino FC at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on February 17, 2020 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Giuseppe Cottini/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Ante Rebic has been on a tear for AC Milan in 2020. The Croatian rarely featured in the first half of the season but has proven his worth early and quickly in the new year. His impact alongside Zlatan Ibrahimović has been key to Milan’s recent hot run of form.

Ante Rebic Breaking Out for AC Milan

Statistics

A quick look at Rebic’s statistics in 2020 shows how impactful he’s been. In 340 minutes of league play, the attacking midfielder has scored five goals. This has accounted for half of all the Rossoneri’s goals. In addition, three of his goals directly contributed to three wins.

For example, Rebic was the lone goal scorer in Milan’s recent 1-0 victory over Torino. The game was generally even, but Rebic accounted for Milan’s only shot on target and goal. The chances may not be pouring in, but he has proven to be clinical.

Rebic was also Milan’s goal scorer in the first leg of their Coppa Italia semi-final fixture against Juventus. The game ended in a draw after a controversial penalty awarded to the Bianconeri in the dying moments of the game, but the Croatian was once again massively influential.

He starts on the left side of both of manager Stefano Pioli’s 4-4-1-1 and 4-2-3-1 formations. This has allowed his chemistry with both Ibrahimović and Samu Castillejo to blossom and flourish.

The Future

Champions League qualification is more of a dream than a possibility. Milan sit in eighth, ten points behind a hot Atalanta team. Rebic has done his part to change this, but Milan’s slump in the first half of the season dug too deep of a hole.

Europa League qualification and Coppa Italia glory are still on the cards. Milan are tied on points for sixth, but only behind because of goal difference. A couple more game-winners from Rebic could easily see Milan back into Europe.

A slew of yellow cards in the first semi-final leg of the Coppa Italia will see Milan missing notable players in Ibrahimović and goal-scoring left-back Theo Hernandez for the second leg. With current trends in mind, this means that Rebic will likely be the focal point of the team’s attack. If he can manage to lead the team to victory against Italy’s ongoing dynasty, he will quickly find himself in modern Milan lore.

The Croatian has given Milan every reason to keep him on board for next season. He arrived on loan from Eintracht Frankfurt last season in exchange for Andre Silva, but there are no purchase options. If his current form continues, Ante Rebic will be a hot commodity on the transfer market and Milan will have to spend big if they wish to retain his services.

 

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