Roma 1-1 Milan: Saelemaekers´ late strike keeps Rossoneri in top four

By | April 29, 2023

A 97th-minute Alexis Saelamaekers equaliser stunned Roma and earned Milan a point at Stadio Olimpico on Saturday to maintain their place in the Serie A Champions League places.

Milan headed into the game above the Giallorossi on just goal difference, and it appeared it would remain that way as a quiet affair was moments away from finishing goalless.

But in the fourth minute of stoppage time, Abraham fired into the bottom corner to send the home fans into raptures and seemingly lift Jose Mourinho’s men above the visitors.

However, Saelemaekers stuck in the dying seconds to nick a draw for Milan and extend their unbeaten Serie A streak against Roma to seven matches.

The first half was a cagey affair with clear-cut chances few and far between, though Lorenzo Pellegrini should have done better as he curled an early effort high and wide for the hosts.

An almighty scare occurred for Milan before the break, Leonardo Spinazzola cutting the ball back for Pellegrini to hit, only for Abraham to block his team-mates’ shot before Andrea Belotti smashed the rebound well wide.

There was no shot on target in the first half, but Saelemaekers lashed a first-time effort over not long into the second half as both sides struggled to create much going forward.

It looked inevitable the match would end goalless, but in the 94th minute, Abraham received the ball before firing past Mike Maignan and into the bottom left corner to put Roma on the verge of three massive points.

But there would be another twist, as Saelemaekers got on the end of Rafael Leao’s deep cross before his effort squirmed through Rui Patricio to earn Milan a dramatic point.

What does it mean? Milan stay in top four, but only just

With so much at stake, Roma thought they had earned a massive boost to their Champions League qualification hopes as Abraham struck with minutes to play.

But Saelemaekers’ finish with seconds left completely stunned the hosts and means they stay fourth, though city rivals Inter are just three points behind with a game in hand.

Abraham nearly the hero

The former Chelsea striker was largely quiet, but it appeared he would receive the plaudits as his cool finish put Roma ahead, though it was not to be.

Abraham scored with his and Roma’s only shot on target, but his team’s hearts would be broken as Saelemaekers dramatically levelled.

Saelemaekers provides a spark

Milan struggled going forward in the first half and Stefano Pioli looked to his bench, deciding to bring the Belgium international on in the 56th minute.

The change had the desired effect as the 23-year-old led his team in shots (four), touches in the opposition box (four) and big chances (two) while also scoring the all-important equaliser.

What’s next?

Both teams are back in Serie A action on Wednesday, when Roma travel to Monza while Milan will host Cremonese.

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