AC Milan can hope for their first place in the quarter-finals of the Champions League in eleven years. In the round of 16 first leg, the Italian champions won 1-0 (1-0) against Tottenham Hotspur on Tuesday evening. Brahim Díaz scored the only goal after seven minutes and set the stage for the second leg in London on 8 March.
From the beginning there was nothing to be seen of the Italians' poor form, who have only been able to win one of eight competitive games since the beginning of the year. With the first chance to score, Milan took the lead. France's runner-up world champion Theo Hernandez first failed at Spurs keeper Fraser Forster, the Englishman also parried Díaz's follow-up shot, but he was powerless on the third attempt: Spaniard Díaz made it 1-0 with a diving header (7th).
The hosts withdrew as the game progressed, leaving control to the English. However, Harry Kane and Co. rarely got in front of the Milan goal. Even after the change of sides, Tottenham didn't get any real chances against the good defense of the fifth in Serie A around former Schalke player Malick Thiaw.
With the substitution of the Brazilian World Cup star Richarlison, guest coach Antonio Conte hoped for more danger in attack (70th). However, that was only in front of their own goal: Charles de Ketelaere (78th) and the strong former Schalke Thiaw (79th) each headed just wide and missed an even better starting position for Milan.
Thiaw shows a very strong performance in Milan's central defense and repeatedly stopped the attacks of the Hotspurs. Harry Kane and Heung-Min Son always found their champion in the 21-year-old, who moved from FC Schalke 04 to Milan for seven million euros last summer. “We are very happy that we won without conceding a goal. It was a special feeling to be in the starting eleven in the Champions League round of 16,” said Thiaw.