AC Milan 0-3 Atalanta: Hosts defeated for the second time at the San Siro in 2021 but stay top as visitors move into the top four of Serie A with impressive win
- AC Milan still top Serie A despite an emphatic win for Atalanta at the San Siro
- Cristian Romero put Atalanta ahead with a header before Josip Ilicic made it 2-0
- Duvan Zapata rounded off the scoring as the hosts had just two shots on target
Atalanta consigned AC Milan to their second league defeat of the season with a 3-0 win at San Siro on Saturday, but Stefano Pioli’s side were still named ‘winter champions’ in Serie A.
A Cristian Romero header put the visitors ahead at half-time before a Josip Ilicic penalty and Duvan Zapata strike completed a dominant victory for the Bergamo side.
Atalanta had the chances to win by an even wider margin as an out-of-sorts Milan put in one of their worst performances of the season.
The home side failed to muster a shot on target until debutant Mario Mandzukic drew a good save from Pierluigi Gollini in the 71st minute with his first touch after coming off the bench.
Milan nevertheless claim the title of winter champions as they top the standings at the halfway point of the season with 43 points, two ahead of Inter Milan after their 0-0 draw at Udinese.
Duvan Zapata celebrates after wrapping up the win for Atalanta at the San Siro on 77 minutes
Cristian Romero put the visitors ahead with a stooping header from Robin Gosens’ delivery
Zlatan Ibrahimovic struggled to influence proceedings as the hosts put in an sub-par display
Josip Ilicic converted from the spot after being brought down by AC Milan’s Franck Kessie
Debutant Mario Mandzukic almost scored just after coming on after signing as a free agent
Stefano Pioli’s men are top of Serie A at the halfway stage despite a frustrating afternoon
Atalanta moved into the top four on 36 points, returning to form in style after back-to-back draws against Genoa and Udinese.
Visiting boss Gian Piero Gasperini told Sky Sports Italia after the match: ‘Ilicic had a great game, although there were some situations where he is capable of doing better. Everyone had a great game.
‘This is one of our best performances since I’ve been here. We achieved it against the Serie A leaders, the Winter Champions, but we were superior in every way this evening and that is immensely satisfying.
‘After the game with Liverpool (in the Champions League), which was horrible conceding five goals at home, we learned and made the changes we needed to.
‘We press the opponents much more, which allows us to protect the defence, and we’ve been doing that for several weeks now.’
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