Cagliari vs. AC Milan Serie A Betting Odds, Picks & Predictions: Zlatan Makes Return (Monday, Jan. 18)
Alessandro Sabattini/Getty Images. Pictured: Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
- Zlatan Ibrahimovic is set for a return in Serie A for AC Milan against a Cagliari side that is winless in its last 10 games.
- Matthew Trebby breaks down where the betting value lies with Milan in Monday's match.
Cagliari vs. AC Milan Odds
|Cagliari Odds||+400 [BET NOW]|
|AC Milan Odds||-155 [BET NOW]|
|Draw||+310 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||3.5 (+140 / -177) [BET NOW]|
|Day | Time||Monday | 2:45 p.m. ET|
|How To Watch||ESPN+|
The best story of the European soccer season can be found in the north of Italy, where a 39-year-old superstar is still at his best and leading a European giant to a big upset in Serie A.
AC Milan are atop the Italian top flight, level on points with city rivals Inter Milan, entering their match on Monday against Cagliari, which is fighting for survival in Serie A.
Milan are favored to take all three points, so let’s see where the value is in betting on the Rossoneri in Sardinia.
Cagliari enter this fixture on a downward trajectory after winning three of their first seven matches of the season. They have not won any of their last 10 Serie A games and have scored just nine goals in that span after netting 14 times in those first seven.
If Cagliari scores, chances are it’s one of their two strikers: Joao Pedro (10 goals) or Giovanni Simeone (five). Pedro has scored Cagliari’s last four Serie A goals.
While Cagliari’s 34 goals allowed this season is the third most in the league, their 37.00 expected goals allowed is the most. They’re conceding plenty of chances, although they catch a break with Milan set to be without two key playmakers.
Hakan Calhanoglu (one goal, six assists) hasn’t trained in the build-up to this match, putting his status in doubt, while burgeoning striker Rafael Leao will miss the game due to suspension.
Good news for the Rossoneri: Zlatan Ibrahimovic is back.
After dominating MLS to the tune of 52 goals in two seasons, Ibrahimovic returned to Europe and has Milan on their way to a historic season.
Injuries have limited the 39-year-old to just seven matches this season in Serie A, but he has 10 goals and one assist in those appearances. Ibrahimovic is scoring once every 53.4 minutes in the league this season.
Leao filled in very well up top for Ibrahimovic and will be missed along with Calhanoglu, but Milan has plenty of depth in its attack behind Ibrahimovic.
Defensively, the pairing of veteran Simon Kjaer and Alessio Romagnoli have been strong in the center of the defense, and Davide Calabria has become a fixture on the right side. At left back, Theo Hernandez is fulfilling his potential as one of the best in Europe at the position.
Betting Analysis & Picks
Following their first loss of the league season, Milan bounced back well last weekend against Torino with a 2-0 win. They then eliminated Torino from the Coppa Italia on Tuesday on penalties. Ibrahimovic got 45 minutes under his belt in the cup and will be raring to go for this one.
There’s no reason to expect anything except a comfortable Milan win. Even without some of the supporting cast, Zlatan’s return will provide a boost to the team. He has lifted Milan’s confidence this season just by simply being himself.
Milan -1.5 is +175 on DraftKings, and that presents the most potential value. The Rossoneri need all three points to maintain distance between their city rivals, Inter, as well as a surging Juventus side.
Pick: AC Milan -1.5 (+175)