There was a third generation of the Maldini family to score in Serie A on Saturday as Daniel Maldini helped AC Milan to a 2-1 win at Spezia.
Daniel Maldini scored his first Serie A goal 13 years, 179 days after the last league goal netted by his father Paolo — against Atalanta in 2008 — and 60 years, 22 days after his grandfather Cesare scored against Catania in 1961.
Paolo Maldini, who is now a technical director at the club where he made more than 900 appearances as a player, jumped out of his seat in celebration at the goal shortly after the restart.
Daniele Verde leveled for Spezia 10 minutes from time but substitute Brahim Diaz restored Milan’s lead six minutes later.
It was Daniel Maldini’s first start for Milan and the 19-year-old broke the deadlock three minutes into the second half as he headed in a cross from Pierre Kalulu and it was too powerful for Spezia goalkeeper Jeroen Zoet to keep out.
Milan almost doubled their lead shortly afterward but Rafael Leao’s curled effort came off the post.
It appeared as if Spezia had snatched a point when Milan midfielder Sandro Tonali deflected in Verde’s effort but once again Rossoneri coach Stefano Pioli’s substitutions paid off as Diaz — who had only been on the field for five minutes — steered in the winner after a great move by Alexis Saelemaekers.
Inter Milan drop points
Elsewhere, Inter Milan missed the chance to go top of Serie A on Saturday after a thrilling 2-2 draw with Atalanta which allowed city rivals AC Milan to hold onto first place.
Champions Inter sit third, two points behind leaders Milan, after a breathless match at the San Siro which ended with Federico Dimarco missing an 86th minute penalty and Roberto Piccoli then having a last-gasp winner for Atalanta ruled out amid frantic protests from the away side.
Atalanta are fifth following the draw which highlighted the attacking threat and the clear intention from Gian Piero Gasperini’s side to continue to punch above their weight in Italy’s top flight.
Lautaro Martinez put Inter ahead in the fifth minute with a superb first-time finish from the excellent Nicolo Barella’s cross.
However, Atalanta stunned the home fans thanks to a Ruslan Malinovskyi missile on the half hour and Rafael Toloi’s rebound effort eight minutes later.
Atalanta dominated for long periods after levelling and could have added three more early in the second half.
Malinovskyi hit the post and had a close range effort saved while Jose Luis Palomino should have done better with his close range header from a corner.
However Simone Inzaghi’s Inter reacted and could have easily been out of sight before academy graduate Dimarco thwacked the crossbar with his spot-kick. (Firstpost)