The AC Milan line-up that should start against Inter at the Derby della Madonnina

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AC Milan and Inter will meet this Sunday in an expected 174th Derby della Madonnina, occupying the top two places in Serie A for the first time in a decade.

Stefano Pioli’s Rossoneri got a 2-2 draw at Red Star Belgrade, or Crvena zvezda for you cool guys, in the middle of the week, having made a number of changes for that Europa League clash with the clash of Heavyweight this weekend in mind.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic is the star attraction returning to the starting eleven, but who should join him? Here, 90min dives in and predicts the 55-year-old coach’s team selection.

Simon Kjaer
Simon Kjaer was an unused substitute for the week and could return to the starting eleven this weekend | Emilio Andreoli / Getty Images

Gianluigi Donnarumma (GK) – The 21-year-old has arguably been Italy’s best goalkeeper this season, so perhaps he wants the financial rewards to go with him. A strong and consistent performer who is indisputable number one.

Davide Calabria (RB) – He has started 95% of Milan’s Serie A matches this season and is a key cog in the quiet four.

Simon Kjaer (CB) – Rested for the trip to Belgrade, it is fair to assume that Pioli was saving the Dane for this match and that he will enter the squad in lieu of Chelsea loan officer Fikayo Tomori.

Alessio Romagnoli (CB) – The club captain is undoubtedly the best central defender in Milan and is one of the, if not, the first name on the board.

Theo Hernandez (LB) – A real threat going forward, Hernandez has contributed four goals and four impressive assists this season. Possibly the most valuable player in the club, he’s a perfect starter.

AC Milan v FC Crotone - Serie A
Franck Kessie has scored seven league goals from midfield this season | Marco Luzzani / Getty Images

Sandro Tonali (CM) – The young Italian was absent for the win over Crotone earlier this month, and was only fit enough to briefly watch the loss to Spezia. His midweek cameo suggests he’s ready to make a comeback from the beginning.

Franck Kessie (CM) – Another first-team regular who was given a mid-week break, Kessie has scored seven goals from midfield this season and is arguably one of Milan’s most important players.

Hakan Calhanoglu (AM) – The Turkish attacking midfielder is the creative ray in Milan’s attacking wheel and has nine assists in Serie A to his name.

Crvena Zvezda v AC Milan - UEFA Europa League Round of 32 First Leg
Zlatan Ibrahimovic rested in Belgrade on Thursday | Srdjan Stevanovic / Getty Images

Alexis Saelemaekers (RW) – The signing of the talented Belgian from Anderlecht was seen as a long-term investment, but he is already thriving in Milan and deserves his regular starting job.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic (ST) – He may be 39, but Ibrahimovic is still one of the best in the business. With 14 goals and counting, the Swede loves the big occasion, and a ruck, if the opportunity presents itself.

Ante Rebic (LW) – He has been in good contact this season, and his early retirement against Red Star indicates that he is in the vein of a more prominent role here.

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