Thursday October 29 2015
‘Donnarumma was prepared for this’

The father of Milan’s 16-year-old goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma reveals ‘there were hints’ he would get a chance.

Donnarumma became the youngest ever Serie A ‘keeper on Sunday after usurping Diego Lopez in the Rossoneri goal, and retained the spot for last night’s 1-0 win against Chievo.

Although the decision of Coach Sinisa Mihajlovic came as something of a surprise, Alfonso Donnarumma has said that his son was ‘mentally prepared’ for this chance.

"In part we hoped for this because last season there were already the first hints,” he told Tuttomercatoweb.

“At the end of the season they had already talked about this possibility, so let's say he was mentally prepared, although of course much of the credit goes to the club.

“I want to emphasise the work of the goalkeeping coaches too, who followed him through these years of development.

"Fortunately it won’t get to his head. Gianluigi is a quiet and calm boy, who is going through all this with the utmost humility. After training or a match, for example, he prefers to go to the hotel where his friends from the youth team are or go home to the family.

"He tries to learn something new from every situation, the thing he hates is being unprepared and therefore he always does a lot of research, also at school.

"There were many teams that had looked at him or asked him for a trial, but Milan was always the first choice because there’s a family passion for the Rossoneri.

"In recent days I've read on some Napoli websites a few words of mine about my refusal to let my son go to the Azzurri. It's all false, I never said anything like that.

“Gianluigi has never refused the Azzurri for the simple reason that Napoli never looked to him.”