At the top of Serie A, first place in their UEFA Europa League group and still in with a chance of Coppa Italia glory, this season is going very well for AC Milan so far. One point ahead of bitter rivals Inter but seven clear of Roma in third, this is a big opportunity for Stefano Pioli's men to win their first Italian title since 2010-11.
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January is a crucial opportunity for them to equip themselves to ensure that they are able to last the distance this campaign. Here's a look at what Milan could do this month.
Fabrizio Romano on Milan
"Milan's main need is in central defense. Two top talents lead the list: Schalke 04's Ozan Kabak and Verona's Matteo Lovato. Milan are following both and they want to strengthen in this area come January. In attack, Zlatan Ibrahimovic's two injuries already this season have the club worried that they need backup. The idea is to keep the talented Lorenzo Colombo and to add another player on top of that."
Milan should go after...
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Should Kabak or Lovato be unavailable this winter, Milan might choose to revisit their interest in Strasbourg's Mohamed Simakan with the French club struggling in Ligue 1 and domestic football in France suffering because of the collapsed Mediapro television rights deal and the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the bank balances of professional clubs. Such an accomplished central defender as young as 20 is a rare find in Europe and now could be the moment to land him at an affordable price as he could be more expensive in the summer if Strasbourg stay up or there is increased competition. Other clubs, such as Lille (who beat Milan at San Siro in the Europa League but need to sell this January), could also have a few players of interest to the Italians.
Player most likely to go
Until Ibrahimovic's latest injury, a loan move for Colombo looked likely. Now, it seems to be more of a question of Milan adding to their depth and quality as they prepare to launch an assault on three different domestic and European titles. Outside of a central defender, the Rossoneri will likely try to secure Ibrahimovic, Gianluigi Donnarumma and Hakan Calhanoglu's futures as priorities.
Milan transfer prediction
Milan to sign a central defender and to push for quality backup in attack. France could be a good shopping destination with players available at lower prices than usual and a greater need to sell. Milan's performance in the January window could determine their success on all fronts this term.