Mattia De Sciglio smiled at the “wonderful comparison” with Paolo Maldini after another self-assured performance for Italy.
The 19-year-old Milan full-back provided the assist for Mario Balotelli’s second goal in a 2-0 World Cup qualifying victory over Malta.
“I always try to do what I can and start off simple. As time goes on I try to do more complicated things. Today this assist came about and I am happy, as it allowed us to finish off the game,” said De Sciglio.
“We played well, albeit aware it wasn’t easy against a Malta side that was organised, closed up and had also caused us problems in Italy.
“The pitch was very wet on the surface, but hard underneath. Quite a few players were slipping over.
“I stayed back more because Malta were sitting there and we had to move the ball around quicker, trying to avoid counter-attacks.”
Although still only 19, De Sciglio is fast becoming a regular pick for the senior Italy side.
“My objective first of all is to continue doing well with Milan, as we have an important target. We’ll see what happens with Italy as a result of that.”
The Rossoneri full-back has been called ‘the new Maldini’ – including in our latest blog.
“It is wonderful to have that comparison. For now I can only say what Maldini did was incredible and I hope to achieve only half of that.”
Think you know your Italian football? Share your knowledge, tips and comments to win cash prizes in OLBG's tipster competition - £11,000 to be won monthly!