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AC Milan vs RB Salzburg: Electric AC flick the switch to reach UCL knockouts

AC Milan (cl)
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AC Milan extended their unbeaten run against Austrian teams in European competition to nine matches with a comprehensive 4-0 win over RB Salzburg which sees them advance to the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League.

A straight shootout to decide which team would join group winners Chelsea in the round of 16, the game was almost guaranteed to be action-packed, and that’s exactly how the first half panned out. The hosts signalled their intent early on when Theo Hernández’ shot came back off the right post. The pressure was all coming from the Rossoneri in the opening exchanges, and Stefano Piolo’s side found the goal they were craving when Olivier Giroud’s header from Sandro Tonali’s corner crept under the feet of Junior Adamu at the back post for his third goal of the campaign.
Having been sparked into life by the goal, Salzburg went on the hunt for a swift equaliser, and they came close to finding it when a pass into the area found Adamu who held off Fikayo Tomori and turned before shooting straight at Ciprian Tătăruşanu. Shortly after, Giroud thought he had scored his second goal of the night when he tapped in after Philipp Köhn had spilled Hernández’s shot, but the linesman’s flag went up for offside to deny the hosts a two-goal lead at HT.
This mattered little though as, within a minute of the restart, the seven-time winners took another step closer to the knockout rounds when Giroud headed Ante Rebić’s cross into the path of Rade Krunič, who powered his header into the top left corner to double the hosts’ advantage. Then, with the hour mark approaching, the game was all but secured when Die Roten Bullen made a mess of trying to clear Rafael Leão’s cross, allowing Giroud to fire home for a brace on the night.
Substitute Junior Messias scored in stoppage-time to add extra gloss to the scoreline, as the Italians sailed through to the last 16 in style with a real return-to-form victory in front of their supporters at the San Siro.