FC Barcelona wrapped up their preseason tour of the USA with a 1-0 victory over AC Milan thanks to a sensational second-half strike by 20-year-old Ansu Fati.
It was a deserved victory for a Barcelona side that simply had more ideas and attacking desire, especially through its wingers Raphinha and EZ Abde in the first half. Left winger Ansu Fati and left-back Alejandro Balde then came on in the second half to terrorise Milan’s right side and the two combined on the 55th minute goal as Fati curled it into the far top corner.
The defending La Liga champions have one final preseason match back at home against Tottenham (Aug. 8) before opening the La Liga domestic season at Getafe (Aug. 13).
AC Milan did not taste victory during their spell in the USA after losing to Real Madrid (3-2) and drawing Juventus (2-2) prior to the loss in Las Vegas. The Rossoneri have a bit more time before they kick off Italian Serie A action on Aug. 21.
AC Milan vs Barcelona final score
|2nd Half||Goal scorers|
|Barcelona||1||Ansu Fati 55′|
AC Milan (4-3-3): 16. Maignan (GK) – 25. Florenzi (20. Kalulu 64′), 28. Thiaw (24. Kjaer 73′), 23. Tomori (56. Salemaekers 86′), 19. Theo Hernandez (95. Bartesaghi 80′) – 8. Loftus-Cheek, 33. Krunic (32. Pobega 73′), 14. Reijnders – 11. Pulisic (18. Romero 73′), 9. Giroud (29. Colombo 73′), 10. Leao
Barcelona 1st Half (4-3-3): 13. Inaki Pena (GK) – 4. Araujo, 23. Kounde, 24. Eric Garcia, 17. Marcos Alonso – 8. Pedri, 18. Oriol Romeu, 29. Fermin Lopez – 22. Raphinha, 11. Ferran Torres, 16. EZ Abde
Barcelona 2nd Half (4-3-3): 13. Inaki Pena (GK) – 4. Araujo (28. Garrido 85′), 23. Kounde (2. Dest 68′), 24. Eric Garcia (30. Faye 85′), 3. Alejandro Balde (31. Valle 85′) – 20. Sergi Roberto, 18. Oriol Romeu (26. Casado 80′), 21. Frenkie De Jong – 22. Raphinha (27. Yamal 68′), 9. Robert Lewandowski, 10. Ansu Fati
Ousmane Dembele transfer to PSG is happening
When Ousmane Dembele was not in the matchday squad against AC Milan after starring against Real Madrid, it was clear that the rumoured move to PSG was real.
The Frenchman wore a hoodie on the sidelines, along with another player reported to be on his way out in Franck Kessie. After scoring his goal, Ansu Fati made it a point to give both a hug, another sign that the squad probably knew something.
Ansu Fati went to celebrate his goal with Ousmane Dembélé 🤗 pic.twitter.com/5z9xbXk123
— B/R Football (@brfootball) August 2, 2023
And then Xavi Hernandez removed all suspense with his comments after the match, confirming that Dembele would be departing, requesting a transfer away from FC Barcelona.
🚨🗣️ Xavi: “I wish Dembélé all the best at PSG. He gave us so much. Of course I tried to convince him to stay, but he told me that he spoke to Luis Enrique and Al-Khelaifi. There was no way to convince him, it’s final and it’s his personal decision.” pic.twitter.com/UNzt9jJZRZ
— Managing Barça (@ManagingBarca) August 2, 2023
🗣️ – Xavi on Dembélé: “He has asked us to leave, that he has an offer from PSG. Today he has not played for that reason. It is a pity. I feel bad. A bit disappointed yes, we have taken great care of him here. The offer that PSG have made, we cannot compete.” 🇫🇷
— Barça Buzz (@Barca_Buzz) August 2, 2023
Raphinha ready to take over Dembele’s role
Where does Dembele’s impending departure leave Barcelona? Raphinha now projects to be the starter on the right wing and he was a man on a mission against AC Milan.
The Brazilian attacked relentlessly, he was dangerous on a handful of corner kick deliveries, and he sought quick combinations and dribbling moves in and around the box. He did everything to help his team get a goal, as if to send a message to Barcelona fans and manager Xavi Hernandez that the right wing was in good hands.
Although Gavi is more likely to see time on the front line in cases Raphinha is not available, youngster Lamine Yamal also showed energy and inventiveness when he subbed in for the Brazilian star. But he’s clearly one for the future.
According to multiple reports, Barcelona are likely to use the Dembele transfer money to hit the market in search of an attacking right-back who can help bring the best out of Raphinha. Joao Cancelo and Real Valladolid’s Ivan Fresneda are the rumoured names, which should come as a relief to captain Ronald Araujo, who continues to fill in by playing out of position.
In case Ousmane Dembélé leaves Barça and accepts Paris Saint-Germain move, part of the budget could be used for the new right back with João Cancelo as top priority 🔵🔴 #FCB
🇪🇸 Iván Fresneda is the other option in Barça list.
…Cancelo has always been and remains the priority. pic.twitter.com/9PAtp8PYz2
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) July 30, 2023
AC Milan, Christian Pulisic still out of sync
Milan manager Stefano Pioli is integrating a handful of new faces, with more still to come as Noah Okafor and Samuel Chukwueze are yet to join up with their new teammates.
So the Rossoneri are understandably looking far from the finished product, with American Christian Pulisic struggling to leave his mark on the game in a wide right position. Although he has a familiar face nearby in former Chelsea teammate Ruben Loftus-Cheek on the inside channel, Pulisic is clearly still learning his teammates’ movements.
Until they reach optimal performance, Milan are once again reliant on the magic from Rafael Leao on the left wing. But he had a quiet first half and only had two or three runs that caused Barcelona issues in the second.
The one bright spot for AC Milan supporters has to be what they saw from midfielder Tijjani Reijnders, who showed himself to be dynamic, attack-minded, and aggressive with his runs out of left central midfield. He was also not afraid to have a go at goal when he thought he had a look. He should be a strong contributor this season.
AC Milan vs Barcelona live updates, highlights, commentary
Final: AC Milan 0-1 Barcelona
90th min.: Two minutes of stoppage time.
85th min.: SUBS. Barcelona manager Xavi Hernandez brings on three young defenders to get the final five minutes. AC Milan bring on Alexis Saelemaekers to play at right-back with Pierre Kalulu moving to left centre-back.
81st min.: Chance Barcelona. The 17-year-old Davide Bartesaghi comes up with a big block on an Ansu Fati shot in the box just minutes after coming on to play left-back.
80th min.: SUBS. The match is fading toward the 90th minute as two more subs come on – one for each side.
76th min.: Chance AC Milan! It’s a patented run down the left by Rafael Leao, and his cutback cross in the box finds a wide open Tijjani Reijnders, who can’t redirect the ball on goal. It’s the Dutchman who started the play by intercepting the ball in midfield.
73rd min.: SUBS Milan. Four changes as the Rossoneri push for an equalizer.
67th min.: Disallowed goal by Barcelona. On a quick transition, right-back Ronald Araujo is in the Milan box to head home, but he was well offside.
SUBS Barcelona. Two more changes with Lamine Yamal (for Raphinha) and Sergino Dest (for Jules Kounde) coming on. Dest will be the right-back, with Araujo moving inside to centre-back. That disallowed goal was probably the last attacking buildup we’ll see Araujo involved in for this match.
63rd min.: Chance Barcelona! Off a corner kick, Raphinha whips in a ball which Oriol Romeu heads just wide. Barcelona are deserving of this lead.
SUB Milan. And AC Milan bring in Pierre Kalulu at right-back in place of Alessandro Florenzi, who was being attacked relentlessly by Alejandro Balde and Ansu Fati.
55th min.: Goal Barcelona! What a goal by Ansu Fati, who curls the ball into the far right corner.
¡Golazo de Ansu Fati! ☄️
Barcelona lo gana 1-0 contra el Milan. 💥 pic.twitter.com/U4Fvd5ds3k
— ESPN Deportes (@ESPNDeportes) August 2, 2023
And he runs over to the Barcelona bench and gives a hug to Ousmane Dembele and Franck Kessie, both players rumoured to be leaving the club.
Fati saying goodbye to dembele 😭 pic.twitter.com/JmI6rbwZZo
— Baggio 🇮🇶 (@BaggioM10) August 2, 2023
54th min.: Good play by Barcelona to start the second half. They’re knocking the ball around with ease, the fullbacks are getting into the attack, and the ball is flying from player to player.
50th min.: Chance AC Milan! It comes off a transition move and Rafael Leao aims for the top right corner, but barely misses as Ronald Araujo was backing off.
46th min.: The second half is underway with Alejandro Balde, Sergi Roberto, Ansu Fati, Frenkie De Jong, and Robert Lewandowski coming on. No subs for AC Milan.
Halftime: AC Milan 0-0 Barcelona
Halftime: Decent half from the two sides, but Barcelona have better ideas in the attack through wingers Raphinha and EZ Abde. Both appear like they have something to prove.
AC Milan don’t have that same energy coming from their wingers, Rafael Leao on the left and Christian Pulisic on the right, but that’s also because they’re often double-teamed by Barcelona players, who show a real commitment to defending.
40th min.: Chance Barcelona! Raphinha delivers a pass into the box for Ferran Torres, but AC Milan ‘keeper Mike Maignan beats him to the ball in the box. Good goalkeeping.
⏰ HALFTIME IN LAS VEGAS! 🇺🇸
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) August 2, 2023
36th min.: Nice defensive play by Raphinha in his OWN BOX, stripping Rafael Leao of the ball. And the crowd applauds Barcelona playing out of the back. Leao has been quiet. Raphinha has been all over.
29th min.: YELLOW card to Loftus-Cheek. He had two reckless fouls in a row and finally gets a card on the second on Raphinha. The Englishman’s timing is off, but he’s shown a few good touches on the ball in the Milan midfield.
24th min.: Chance Milan! Tijjani Reijnders floats out left and tries to curl one to the far post and comes really close. The former AZ Almaar man has been positive in this first half.
21st min.: Chance Barcelona. Raphinha puts AC Milan goalkeeper Mike Maignan to work on a shot from distance and then on a corner kick.
18th min.: Chances AC Milan! Loftus-Cheek leads Tijjani Reijnders into the box on a forward run from midfield and Barcelona reserve ‘keeper Inaki Pena has to make the save. On the ensuing corner taken by Pulisic, a Tomori header goes high.
— AC Milan (@acmilan) August 2, 2023
15th min.: Barcelona have been quick and lively in attack, especially thanks to Raphinha on the right and EZ Abde on the left wing. Both are up for it today.
Abde has to stay… pic.twitter.com/b1KkBS8ASN
— ⚽ (@barcastat) August 2, 2023
12th min.: Chance Barcelona! Christian Pulisic gives away the ball inside his own box, and Jules Kounde slams a low shot off the left post, with Ferran Torres’s follow-up shot blocked by Fikayo Tomori.
Not a good start from AC Milan, to the delight of the fans in Las Vegas who are clearly pro-Barcelona.
8th min.: YELLOW card to Barcelona’s Marcos Alonso after he was schooled by Christian Pulisic on a dribble and he hauled down his ex-Chelsea teammate.
4th min.: Penalty Barcelona? Raphinha is dancing in the box, but Fikayo Tomori has his arm up and Raphinha hits the deck. The U.S. referee does not point to the spot and it’s a good call.
🎬 | Raphinha during the game vs AC Milan.pic.twitter.com/Os5ukYpcYy
— infosfcb 𝕏 (@infosfcb) August 2, 2023
It’s been all Barcelona to start as AC Milan continue to give away the ball easily.
1st min.: Barcelona kick off (at eight minutes after the hour).
5 minutes to kickoff: Teams are on the field. Barcelona will be in white, with AC Milan in their traditional black and red jerseys. The captains are Theo Hernandez and Ronald Araujo. The referee is American Alex Chilowicz.
And as is customary at these games: The U.S. national anthem being played before the teams are on the field:
🇺🇸 Suena el himno de Estados Unidos en el Allegiant Stadium de Las Vegas, donde se disputará el Barça – Milan
— Mundo Deportivo (@mundodeportivo) August 2, 2023
15 minutes to kickoff: According to reporters in the stadium, Ousmane Dembele is actually not in the official Barcelona squad list although the team had him listed among their subs on social media.
Also, Inigo Martinez is apparently battling plantar fasciitis.
🇺🇸 🔵🔴 Milan – Barça
📍Allegiant Stadium. Muy vacío. Caben 65.000 esp
Último partido de la gira
🚑 Iñigo Mtnez, fascitis plantar
— Anaïs Martí Herrero (@amartiherrero) August 2, 2023
30 minutes to kickoff: All eyes on Ousmane Dembele and whether this match will be his last one for FC Barcelona.
💭🦟 Dembélé y ¿su último partido con el Barça?
👀 Así afronta el francés su suplencia en un día de tensiones en torno a su futuro…
— Diario SPORT (@sport) August 2, 2023
45 minutes to kickoff: As you’d imagine, the Italian side from Milan is bringing the style to Allegiant Stadium donning all black.
— AC Milan (@acmilan) August 2, 2023
1 hour to kickoff: While Barcelona roll out their reserves, AC Milan reveal a full-strength starting lineup.
— AC Milan (@acmilan) August 2, 2023
1 hour, 15 minutes to kickoff: Barcelona are out with their lineup for the match and the revelation from the Real Madrid match, academy product Fermin Lopez, is getting the start with several other backups.
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona_es) August 2, 2023
1 hour, 30 minutes to kickoff: AC Milan’s newest arrival could be a day or two away with Fabrizio Romano reporting that Yunus Musah’s medical is happening in Italy.
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) August 2, 2023
2 hours to kickoff: AC Milan’s new midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek gives his take on his new team and the players on the Rossoneri.
🎙️ @RLC in 𝑳𝒂𝒔 𝑽𝒆𝒈𝒂𝒔 🎙️ #MilanBarcelona ⚽
Football as seen in America 🇺🇸
Playing in a different league and country 🇮🇹
Facing Barça with his new teammates 🔴⚫ #ACMTour #SempreMilan pic.twitter.com/VVFfDiu1uY
— AC Milan (@acmilan) August 1, 2023
AC Milan vs Barcelona lineups
For AC Milan the name of the game is continuing to incorporate the new acquisitions in the squad with Christian Pulisic, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and new Dutch center-mid Tijjani Reijnders all starting.
According to reports, another fresh transfer, Noah Okafor, hasn’t joined first-team training just yet, and Samuel Chukwueze is training back in Milan. Junior Messias, who is said to be the subject of a potential outgoing transfer, and Davide Calabria (muscle injury) are also not available.
AC Milan starting lineup (4-3-3): 16. Maignan (GK) – 25. Florenzi, 28. Thiaw, 23. Tomori, 19. Theo Hernandez – 8. Loftus-Cheek, 33. Krunic, 14. Reijnders – 11. Pulisic, 9. Giroud, 10. Leao
AC Milan subs (13): 57. Sportiello (GK), 83. Mirante (GK), 95. Davide Bartesaghi, 24. Kjaer, 82. Jan-Carlo Simic, 32. Pobega, 85. Kevin Zeroli, 56. Salemaekers, 7. Adli, 90. De Ketelaere, 70. Chaka Traore, 18. Romero, 29. Colombo.
The big question for Barcelona continues to be what the club does with Ousmane Dembele, who reports indicate could still move to PSG for a hefty fee, potentially after the USA tour. He will not get the start in this game, but will he even come off the bench?
Barcelona starting lineup (4-3-3): 13. Inaki Pena (GK) – 4. Araujo, 23. Kounde, 24. Eric Garcia, 17. Marcos Alonso – 8. Pedri, 18. Oriol Romeu, 29. Fermin Lopez – 22. Raphinha, 11. Ferran Torres, 16. EZ Abde
Barcelona subs (20): Ter Stegen (GK), Astralaga (GK), Lenglet, Christensen, Mika Faye, Dest, Balde, Alex Valle, Inigo Martinez, Kessie, Marc Casado, Sergi Roberto, De Jong, Gundogan, Aleix Garrido, Gavi, Dembele, Ansu Fati, Lewandowski, Lamine Yamal
AC Milan vs Barcelona live stream, TV channel
This preseason friendly takes place at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas and kicks off on Tuesday, Aug. 1 at 8 p.m. local time.
|USA||Tue, Aug. 1||11 p.m. ET||ESPN, ESPN Deportes||Fubo, ESPN+|
|Canada||Tue, Aug. 1||11 p.m. ET||—||DAZN|
|UK||Wed, Aug. 2||4 a.m. BST||—||—|
|Australia||Wed, Aug. 2||1 p.m. AEST||—||—|
|India||Wed, Aug. 2||8:30 a.m. IST||Sony TEN 2||Sony LIV, JioTV|
|Hong Kong||Wed, Aug. 2||11 a.m. HKT||—||—|
|Malaysia||Wed, Aug. 2||11 a.m. MYT||Astro SuperSport 2||Astro GO, sooka|
|Singapore||Wed, Aug. 2||11 a.m. SGT||—||—|
|New Zealand||Wed, Aug. 2||3 p.m. NZST||—||—|
Different countries have local broadcasters who purchased the rights to show the match in specific territories.
Published at Wed, 02 Aug 2023 06:02:00 +0000