Mario Balotelli scored two goals to lead Milan to an emphatic 4-0 Serie A win over Pescara at the Stadio Adriatico on Wednesday afternoon.
Sulley Muntari and Mathieu Flamini chipped in as well to give Milan a seven-point cushion over Fiorentina for the time being in the race for the final Champions League spot.
The visitors fired a warning shot in the early going when Balotelli pounced on a loose ball and unleashed a drive that came back off the post.
It was a sign of things to come as the Italy international was clearly in the mood today and he wasted no time in adding his name to the scoresheet.
Antonio Nocerino was hauled down in the penalty area and Balotelli picked the corner from the spot to make it 1-0 in the ninth minute.
Milan added to its lead 20 minutes later when Muntari did ever so well to volley Robinho’s delivery past Pescara goalkeeper Mattia Perin.
The encounter was threatening to turn into a rout but Pescara dug deep and headed into the half-time break grateful to be down only 2-0.
It was more of the same in the second stanza as Flamini made it 3-0 in the 51st minute when his neat finish eluded Perin after some very good work from Robinho.
Pescara was all but dead and buried at this point but that did not stop Milan from pushing forward and it was rewarded for its determination just five minutes later.
Balotelli turned his marker with ease after Flamini picked him out and the former Manchester City striker unleashed a shot that found the roof of the net.
It was game, set, match Milan at this point and the visitors probably should have added to their lead but Giampaolo Pazzini missed a couple of easy chances.
Mario Balotelli scored two goals to give him 11 since joining Milan as the visitors brushed aside a desperately overmatched Pescara team on Wednesday.