AC Milan secured a place in the playing round of Europa League qualifying on Thursday evening with a 3-2 win over Bodo/Glimt at the Stadio San Siro.
An early effort by Kasper Junker gave the visitors the lead before two strikes from Hakan Calhanoglu either side of Lorenzo Colombo’s second senior goal for Milan gave the hosts control of the contest. Jens Hauge fired home a second for the Superlaget but it wasn’t enough to stop the Rossoneri progressing to the next round.
Despite appearing to be heavily outgunned for the majority of the opening quarter of an hour it was the visitors who took the lead when a a low cross into the box was turned past Gianluigi Donnarumma by Junker.
However, the Rossoneri immediately went in search of an equaliser and wasted no time in levelling the contest, Calhanoglu’s long range effort finding the top corner just over a minute after Donnarumma had fished the ball out the Milan net.
The hosts continued to dominate the contest as they went in search of a second and it eventually came just after the half hour mark. Theo Hernandez’s low cross was deflected into the path of Colombo and the 18-year-old made no mistake as he fired home to give the Rossoneri the lead.
Pioli’s team were now firmly on top as they continued to pour forward in search of more goals, but to their credit the Superlaget held firm to ensure they went into the break only one goal behind.
The break provided little relief for the visitors and with less than five minutes gone in the second stanza Milan extended their lead. A wonderfully worked corner found Calhanoglu unmarked 18-yards out and the Turkey international drilled home his second of the evening.
The game looked to be all but over as a contest but the Superlaget were in no mood to give up hope and they brought themselves back to within a goal of their hosts when Hauge’s long range effort beat Donnarumma.
Daniel Maldini looked to have restored the Rossoneri’s two goal lead only moments later when he slid the ball past Nikita Khaykin in the Bodo goal, but his effort was ruled out for offside.
Milan would endure a nervous final ten minutes with the visitors applying constant pressure as they went in search of a late equaliser but a combination of last ditch defending and several fantastic saves by Donnarumma ensured they were victorious.