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Feb 28, 2014

Balotelli set to miss Juventus clash

Mario Balotelli is set to miss out on facing Juventus yet again due to the shoulder injury he picked up during AC Milan’s 1-0 Champions League defeat to Atletico Madrid last Wednesday.

Mario Balotelli suffered a shoulder injury against Atletico Madrid.
Mario Balotelli fell awkwardly against Atletico Madrid last week to injure his shoulder.

• Paul: Doubts remain

The Italy international has not faced the Bianconeri in a competitive fixture since April 2010 --  when he came on as a substitute in Inter Milan's 2-0 win at the San Siro -- and only returned to Serie A last summer after a two-and-a-half-year spell at Manchester City.

The 23-year-old striker has yet to face Juve in a Milan shirt with injuries and suspensions denying him since his return to Italy, and that record seems set to continue as he has been unable to train with the Rossoneri for almost 10 days.

Despite Balotelli’s absence, Milan beat Sampdoria 2-0 last weekend to continue their recent revival under new coach Clarence Seedorf, with only Juve having a better record in the last six matches.

Milan defender Cristian Zaccardo told Milan Channel that his side need to keep up their fine form in order to overcome Antonio Conte's side, and believes the players have rediscovered their appetite under Seedorf.

"We need to build on our recent performances when we play Juve," Zaccardo said. "We know we're up against the top side in the table, but we also know that we've now found a good balance and can say a thing or two ourselves.

"It's going to be a big test for us and it won't be easy, but we have what it takes to do well. We've rediscovered our enthusiasm."

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