AC Milan vs. Malaga, 2012 UEFA Champions League: Preview and TV schedule

Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno

Malaga will be looking to take another step towards the Round of 16 while Milan need a result to get kickstart their Champions League campaign

AC Milan's mission against Malaga is pretty simple. Get a result, preferably a win, against the best team so far in Group C to try and stay in striking distance of the Spanish side for the top spot in the group. To do that, they'll need to play much better than did two weeks ago when Malaga dominated them in a 1-0 victory and they'll need their young budding stars to translate better league play in to better Champions League play.

Despite all the ups and down and the cloud following Massimiliano Allegri's job security, Milan are in the mix for European spots in Serie A and in second place in the UCL group. While that's probably not good enough for fans, it could be worse and if Malaga dominate again, it might very well get worse quickly. Fortunately for Milan, there is reason to be confident. They thrashed Chievo 5-1 over the weekend, thanks it large part of strong performances from Stephan El Shaarawy and Bojan Krkić. They'll need those two to be big again against Malaga.

As for Los Boquerones the plan is a bit simpler. They don't have to win at the San Siro, but it would be nice. A draw would be just fine and even a loss wouldn't be the end of the world. Not that it would be an acceptable result, but they have some wiggle room. This match is more about finally shutting up the naysayers who won't stop writing that Malaga is doomed to ultimately fail. The same people that called meeting between these two sides, "Malaga's biggest test" two weeks ago are saying the exact same thing now. They're right, but to not give Manuel Pellegrini and his team some credit is short sighted at best.

Malaga's job today will be simple to keep Milan contained early. If the Rossoneri come out strong, get an early goal, there's the chance the floodgates could open. The less enjoyable this match is to neutrals, the better it likely is for Malaga.

AC Milan injuries and suspensions

Out: None. In doubt: Kevin-Prince Boateng (knee), Robinho (thigh).

Malaga injuries and suspensions

Out: Nacho Monreal (back). In Doubt: Jérémy Toulalan (thigh).

Milan's Boateng and Robinho are both back training, but their status for the match remains in doubt. Of the two, it seems more like that Robinho will be available, though he's not expected to start. Malaga remains without fullback Nacho Monreal as he continues to recover from back issues.

Match Date/Time: 10:45 p.m. local, 2:45 p.m. ET

Venue: Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, Milan, Italy

TV: Sky Sports Red Button (U.K.)

Online: FOX Soccer 2 Go (U.S.), Sky Sports Interactive (U.K.)

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