Milan turns attention back to Serie A
Milan, Italy (Sports Network) - AC Milan will try to put its Champions League disappointment in the rearview mirror on Sunday when the club hosts relegation-battling Palermo.
The Rossoneri took a 2-0 lead into Barcelona in the second leg of its Champions League round of 16 matchup, but left the Camp Nou on the wrong end of a 4-0 thrashing on Tuesday.
Milan defender Cristian Zapata is now calling on his teammates to bounce back Sunday and focus in on a second-place finish in the league.
"We need to achieve our [league] goal which is to finish second," Zapata told Milan Channel. "Palermo will be tough on Sunday, but we cannot fail."
Milan enters the weekend two points back of second-place Napoli and three points above fourth-place Fiorentina for the third and final Champions League place, making three points a must on Sunday.
Palermo comes into the game five points adrift of safety, but the team has proven to be tough in recent weeks, earning draws in six of its last eight games.
The home side is riding a 10-game unbeaten streak in Serie A, but must be mentally ready after such a crushing exit in midweek.
Juventus is the lone representative remaining in the Champions League from Italy and the club also holds a nine-point advantage at the top of the league.
Juve will visit mid-table Bologna on Saturday, while Napoli tries to keep hold of second place and snap a five-game winless skid with three points against Atalanta.
Fiorentina has Champions League ambitions of its own as the Viola has won three of its last four games to close to within three points of a top-three place.
Genoa will visit the Artemio Franchi to face Fiorentina on Sunday, with the visiting side sitting only two points above the drop zone.
Saturday's other match sees a pair of teams who are just outside the European places square off at the Angelo Massimino as Catania entertains Udinese, while Cagliari visits Siena, last-place Pescara hosts Chievo, Inter Milan meets up with Sampdoria, Lazio eyes its second win in nine games when the club faces Torino and Roma hopes to continue its pursuit of a European spot with a home win against Parma.
03/15 15:28:10 ET