MILAN, Italy- AC
Milan will meet Juventus in the Italian Cup semi-finals after beating Torino
4-2 in an enthralling encounter on Tuesday to continue their Zlatan
Extra-time goals from substitutes Hakan Calhanoglu and
Ibrahimovic sealed passage into the last four for a Milan side who have been
reawoken by the return of the Swede last month.
They will be relishing the tie with the Italian champions,
who thumped Roma 3-0 in their quarter-final match last week.
The superstar striker’s second goal since returning to Milan
came on a night the club honoured Milan fan Kobe Bryant — who spent much of
his childhood in Italy — with the message “Legends never die” on the
San Siro big screens.
Milan, who are still down in eighth in Serie A, have now won
five on the bounce in all competitions and are unbeaten in their six matches
since the end of the winter break.
It was Calhanoglu who saved Milan’s skin just after coming
off the bench, as the Turk’s deflected shot in the dying seconds of normal time
took the match to extra time after Torino goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu had held
the hosts at bay.
The hosts had dominated most of the match but had found
themselves behind to two Gleison Bremer goals with 19 minutes left after
Giacomo Bonaventura had given Milan the lead in the 12th minute.
Ibrahimovic missed two chances to snatch the tie after
Calhanoglu levelled, first somehow shooting over the bar from inches out, then
seeing his smart shot well pushed away by Sirigu.
Sirigu was on top form again in extra time when he pulled
off a superb double save, first charging out to stop Theo Hernandez before
quickly getting up to keep out the rebound.
However he couldn’t stop Calhanoglu putting his side ahead
early in the second half of extra-time, his powerful shot escaping the Italian
stopper’s grasp before Ibrahimovic slotted home Leao’s neat lay-off two minutes
later, ending Torino’s resistance.