AC Milan failed to take advantage of several chances as they played out a 0-0 draw with neighbours Internazionale in the first leg of their Coppa Italia semifinal at San Siro on Tuesday.
The Rossoneri began brightly and pinned back the Italian champions almost from the start of the derby, but in the end had nothing to show for it.
AC Milan had an excellent early chance in the ninth minute as they applied a strong press, allowing Alexis Saelemaekers to steal away possession and fire in a shot that Inter goalkeeper Samir Handanovic punched away.
Almost straight after, Theo Hernandez broke through the middle, playing a one-two with fellow France international Olivier Giroud before hitting a low shot that clipped the outside of the post.
While veteran striker Edin Dzeko looked threatening for Inter whenever he was in possession, there were more clear-cut chances for their city rivals as Rafael Leao was off target with a chance midway through the first half and Rade Krunic had his 38th-minute shot blocked.
Milan made more opportunities after the restart with Leao’s angled shot forcing a fine one-handed stop from the Inter goalkeeper and Krunic had another close-range chance blocked.
A triple change by manager Stefano Pioli kept up the pressure, but AC Milan were guilty of over elaborating and making poor decisions when they had the Inter defence stretched.
Inter host the return leg on April 20 with the winner to meet either Fiorentina or Juventus in the final. Fiorentina host Juventus in the first leg of their semifinal on Wednesday.