Robinho on the brink of claiming title with Milan in first season
Saturday 30 April 2011
Manchester City reject Robinho could be crowned an Italian champion tomorrow night if results go his way in Serie A.
The Brazilian will start for Milan, whose coach Massimiliano Allegri must do without the suspended Zlatan Ibrahimovic and the injured Alexandre Pato in attack.
The former Real Madrid forward, who signed for City in 2008 for £32.5m, moved to Milan at the start of this season. His 12 goals in 38 appearances have helped Milan to within one win of the title and only Pato and Ibrahimovic, with 14 goals each, have scored more.
Milan will be champions if Napoli and Internazionale fail to win tonight and they beat Bologna at home tomorrow. Unbeaten in their last eight games in the San Siro, Milan face the Serie A strugglers without the injured Marek Jankulovski and Alessandro Nesta. They also have Mark van Bommel suspended but Andrea Pirlo is back for his first start since October.
The game could decide not just the title but the fate of Bologna manager Alberto Malesani who, since securing safety, has seen his side lose four consecutive games.
Inter and Napoli can delay the inevitable for another week if they beat Cesena and Genoa respectively. Inter are fresh from coming back from a goal down against Lazio to win 2-1 but will be without Julio Cesar, who was sent off last weekend, and the injured Dejan Stankovic. Cesena are unbeaten in four home games as they try to save themselves from the drop.
Two defeats all but ended Napoli's title charge. With Inter and Juventus still to play they must now guarantee a Champions League finish to save a season that at one point seemed to offer them a genuine chance of dethroning both the Milan giants.
In Germany, Schalke's Manuel Neuer faces the club he is expected to sign for in the summer. After his superb performance against Manchester United he goes up against a Bayern Munich side desperate to win their last three games and qualify for the Champions League behind leaders and champions elect Borussia Dortmund. In France leaders Marseilles face Auxerre tomorrow with second placed Lille at home to Arles tonight.
Milan will clinch their 18th Serie A title with victory at Bologna tomorrow – provided Internazionale and Napoli drop points today.
Borussia Dortmund can win the Bundesliga today, if they beat Nuremberg and Bayer Leverkusen fail to win at Cologne.
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