Carlos Bacca helps fire AC Milan to rare home victory over Fiorentina
Carlos Bacca's early goal set AC Milan on their way to a 2-0 win over Fiorentina which eased the pressure on Sinisa Mihajlovic.
Bacca capped a swift counterattack with a low shot across goal in the fourth minute of the match and Milan were decent value for their lead before half-time.
Fiorentina were much improved in the early stages of the second half but could not find a breakthrough and Milan sealed it two minutes from time through substitute Kevin-Prince Boateng.
It was Milan's first home win over Fiorentina since 2010, and the first time in 26 league outings that the Viola have failed to score.
Milan soon found themselves on the back foot, but sprang forward to take the early lead.
Gianluigi Donnarumma's quick ball out from the back found Giacomo Bonaventura and he played it into the left channel for Bacca to chase.
The Colombian still had plenty to do but cut inside Nenad Tomovic before firing into the far corner of the net.
Fiorentina had plenty of the ball as they tried to respond, but their attacks lacked pace and intensity and resulted in no more than a couple of half-chances, with Federico Bernardeschi and Mario Suarez having shots blocked before Josip Ilicic fired over.
Shortly before half-time, Nikola Kalinic went up to meet a free-kick but was correctly booked for a not-so-subtle attempt to punch the ball home.
The Viola returned after the break with more verve in their play, and Tomovic threatened a 50th-minute leveller when he met Borja Valero's free-kick with a powerful header which Donnarumma was able to hold.
Two minutes later, a dangerous ball caused panic in the Milan box as Donnarumma got an unconvincing punch on it before Davide Astori fired over when Valero rifled the ball back into the danger area.
Moments after Kalinic met Valero's deep cross but his header landed on the roof of the net.
At the other end, the ball fell kindly for Luca Antonelli but the full-back fired straight at the goalkeeper.
As the game moved on into the latter stages, it was Milan who were back on the front foot, but Keisuke Honda fired over with a decent chance in the 75th minute.
Milan fans had the welcome sight of Mario Balotelli returning from injury after a lengthy spell out five minutes from time, and soon after his cameo began Boateng sealed the points, racing onto a long ball, nicking it beyond the goalkeeper and winning a footrace with Facundo Roncaglia to poke the ball over the line.