Manchester United vs AC MilanUEFA Europa League, KO: 17:55 Mar 11, 2021, Old Trafford
MANCHESTER United and AC Milan meet at Old Trafford on Thursday night in what is unquestionably the standout fixture from the Europa League last-16 draw.
This heavyweight match-up is worthy of a place on the Champions League stage, but both of these European giants have struggled for domestic consistency in recent seasons, and as such, this showdown will have to settle for a place in Europe's secondary-club competition.
Manchester United will enter this mega-match riding the crest of a wave after their excellent 2-0 Manchester derby win at the Etihad last weekend.
The Red Devils made light work of Real Sociedad in the Europa League round of 32, but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side will be anticipating a tougher test from AC Milan at Old Trafford on Thursday night.
The Rossoneri have been a resurgent force under Stefano Pioli this season, but they have gone off the boil since the turn of the year, with just two wins from their last seven matches across all competitions.
The Serie A giants passage into the last-16 was anything but convincing either, as the away-goals rule came to their rescue when squeezing past Serbian champions Red Star Belgrade.
Manchester United have avoided defeat in 23 of their last 25 Europa League matches and the Red Devils are heavily fancied here at 8/13 with Bet 365.
AC Milan lifted the Champions League trophy at this venue in 2003, but another Old Trafford triumph is a towering 9/2 with Bet 365 and the draw is trading at 29/10 with TonyBet.
Manchester United look a bit skinny to side with at the above-mentioned price, not to mention I suspect this contest could be a bit closer than the odds suggest.
Having said that, I do fancy Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side to take a first-leg to the San Siro and backing the hosts to overcome a -1 start on the asian handicap looks like a nice way in at 23/20 with Genting.
Here we would only lose if Manchester United failed to win the game and that makes plenty of appeal on night night where I reckon the Red Devils will be too strong for an injury-ravaged Rossoneri.
AC Milan's treatment is inundated at present, with Pioli's posse traveling to Manchester without the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimović, Ante Rebic, Theo Hernandez, amongst others.
Manchester United, meanwhile, are expected to field a strong side on Thursday night and that does not bode well for an AC Milan backline that have recorded just two clean sheets across their last 11 matches in all competitions.
With that in mind, coupled with United's ruthless display against Real Sociedad in the last round, I'll happily to back the home team to overcome a -1 start on the asian handicap.
I'll also dip into the anytime goalscorer market and take the 7/5 on offer with PaddyPower for Manchester United maestro Bruno Fernandes to get on the scoresheet on Thursday night.
The Portuguese playmaker has chalked up 23 goals in 41 appearances since checking in at Old Trafford and I reckon he represents a decent bit of value to add to that tally on Thursday night.
This UEFA Europa League match between Manchester United and AC Milan will be played on Mar 11, 2021 and kick off at 17:55. Check below for our tipsters best Manchester United vs AC Milan prediction. You may also visit our dedicated betting previews section for the most up to date previews.