Zlatan nets double in Milan’s easy win

AC Milan demolished Chievo to move up to second in Serie A, just a point behind leaders Juventus.

All four goals came in the first half with Thiago Silva opening the scoring in the eighth minute and Zlatan Ibrahimovic adding the second eight minutes later.

Alexandre Pato added the third after half an hour before a penalty from Ibrahimovic took Massimiliano Allegri’s side above Udinese into second place.

It took only 45 seconds to guess which direction the game would go as Ibrahimovic’s shot clipped the top of the crossbar.

Alberto Aquilani then almost reached a pass from Ibrahimovic, but Chievo goalkeeper Stefano Sorrentino was quick off his line to reach the ball a split-second before him.

The opening goal came in the eighth minute from an unlikely source, defender Thiago Silva showing the precision of an attacker with his shot into the bottom left-hand corner from over 20 yards out.

At the other end, Chievo had a rare chance with Sergio Pellissier, looking for his 100th goal in Serie A, turning and shooting, but Marco Amelia denied him.

Ibrahimovic was also chasing goal number 100 in Italy’s top flight, and he found it in the 16th minute with a shot which dipped over Sorrentino from 20 yards out.

Pato added a third in the 33rd minute when Aquilani’s shot struck the foot of a luckless Luciano and landed right at the feet of the Brazilian striker, who had an open goal to aim at.

Michael Bradley tried to bring Chievo back into the game with a fine volley which only just missed the right-hand post, but that was just a rare interruption in Milan’s dominance.

It was not Chievo’s night and it was certainly not Luciano’s night as he fouled Pato in the area in the 44th minute and Ibrahimovic placed the spot-kick into the top right-hand corner to make it four.

Ibrahimovic should have completed his hat-trick in the 46th minute, but he blasted his shot wide with only Sorrentino to beat.

Chievo were already in damage limitation mode while Milan had no intention of wasting any unnecessary energy having already done enough to win the game comfortably, and the rest of the second half was merely a matter of both sides playing down the clock.