AC Milan Youngsters Facing First Big Tests in Saturday's Trofeo TIM

Tim Fontenault@Tim_FontenaultCorrespondent IJuly 21, 2012

Michelangelo Albertazzi is one of the seven young outfielders who will take part in the Trofeo TIM for Milan.
Michelangelo Albertazzi is one of the seven young outfielders who will take part in the Trofeo TIM for Milan.Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images

AC Milan will be bringing several of its most promising young players into today's Trofeo TIM competition, which kicks off the preseason friendlies for the squad.

Milan will join Juventus and Inter Milan at the San Nicola in Bari for a round robin competition consisting of three 45-minute matches. The most successful team during their two games will be the champion.

As the club seems to be building towards the future, Saturday's competition will give the young players a chance to showcase their abilities.

Milan will be missing some players who are expected to play a first team role this year. Alexandre Pato is at the Olympics while Rodney Strasser, Sulley Muntari, Kevin Constant and Christian Abbiati are all hurt. Didac Vila has also been left off the squad for an unidentified reason.

Thus, Milan will be using some of the young blood. Michelangelo Albertazzi, Bryan Cristiante, Lucas Lotti, Mattia Valoti, Adria Carmona, Simone Ganz and Philipp Prosenik are the seven outfielders not currently on the first team that have been called in to the squad, and it is likely that many of them will be making the trip to Germany and the United States as well. Playing against Juventus and Inter Milan on the same day will be an excellent test for them all.

It's not crazy to think that a fair few of these players could be called upon during the season in Serie A or the Champions League, either because of injury or just good form. Last year saw Bryan Cristiante and Simone Ganz both called in to the squad for Champions League duty.

Today starts an important time for these players. No longer will Milan be able to just loan all their youth stars out and get a couple million here and there for them. Rebuilding revolves around the youth and they need to prove that they can handle it.