PSV visit Milan in a rerun of last season’s semi-final when the Dutch team surprised many onlookers with the verve of their performance.
Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti acknowledges that PSV are not quite the same force they were 6 months ago, but he still has plenty of respect for his opponents.
“The PSV squad is very different this year; it’s been overhauled, but they still have the same fighting spirit,” he said, referring to the summer sales of Ji-Sung Park, Mark van Bommel and Johann Vogel – the latter, ironically to Milan.
“I’ve more faith this year because I have a better squad,” he added.
“Rotating players has worked from a physical and mental standpoint; it’s a stimulus that has motivated the entire group.”
For tonight’s match, he is expected to rest Alberto Gilardino and employ Christian Vieri.
Meanwhile, PSV coach Guus Hiddink promised that his less experienced team would not sit back.
“Yes, we will play with three up front because I like to have flexibility in attack,” he said.
“Against a side like Milan, we need to play the perfect game. And last time we played a perfect game, despite some unfortunate turns, so I wouldn’t rule anything out.”
“We have a lot of young players who are very quick, and I’m confident they can adapt to the play of Milan.”
Hiddink is without striker Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink through suspension, and has a fitness worries over Jefferson Farfan.
Milan are missing Alessandro Nesta who is suffering from a thumb injury.