Sandro Tonali’s ‘dream has come true’ of wearing idol Gennaro Gattuso’s Number 8 Milan jersey and working with club legend Paolo Maldini.
The 20-year-old completed his transfer from Brescia last night, on loan for €10m with option to buy for a further €15m, plus €10m in bonuses and a cut of any future sale.
“My dream has come true,” the lifelong Rossoneri fan told Milan TV as he toured the trophy room.
“It’s a dream that many children have. I decided to post the photo of myself as a kid wearing the Milan shirt on Instagram because it seemed a perfect way to describe the moment I left the Rossoneri colours behind to pursue a career and now I return to this team. It’s a sign.”
Tonali also confirms the story that he phoned Napoli coach Gattuso to personally ask permission for the Number 8 jersey.
“I chose 8 because it has meaning both as a midfield role and for Milan. It was worn by a player who made the history of this club, Gattuso. I did call and he replied as a coach, telling me I didn’t even need to ask, that I should take it and go do everything.”
The negotiations with Brescia went through another club legend, technical director Paolo Maldini.
“I admired Maldini as a child and hoped, at most, to one day get a selfie with him. Now we are working together. It’s such a great feeling to be next to a Milan legend.
“It’ll be wonderful to play alongside Zlatan Ibrahimovic, too. It might be easier to provide assists for him, as he never misses. I already spoke to Gigio (Donnarumma), (Davide) Calabria and (Alessio) Romagnoli, who are all friends from our time on international duty. They gave me lots of advice and we are ready for this new adventure.
“This is a young team, but one that has already shown itself to be a great group of players. We have this desire to create, there will be opportunities and we must take them without hesitation.
“I tell the fans that together we can do anything, even the impossible is not beyond this Milan.”
— AC Milan (@acmilan) September 10, 2020
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