Saturday November 25 2017
Chiesa: 'Fiorentina for a long time'

Federico Chiesa “can see myself at Fiorentina for a long time” and admits there are similarities with his Viola legend father. “I too hunch over when running.”

The son of former Parma star Enrico Chiesa only turned 20 last month, but is already one of the hottest properties in Italian football and recently signed a new contract to June 2022.

“If I signed the renewal, it’s because I think I can continue my journey with the club where I grew up and who invested in me for 10 years. It’s a personal choice, I extended the contract to continue my growth process,” he told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

“My father lifted a trophy with the Viola jersey and I’d love to do the same.”

Yet he has already been linked to the likes of Inter, Napoli, Roma, Juventus, Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain.

“I thank (Napoli President Aurelio) De Laurentiis and (Inter Coach Luciano) Spalletti for their kind words, they were very flattering and must mean I am doing well. I must continue like this.

“I just signed the contract and can see myself in Florence for a long time. I’d love to win a trophy at Fiorentina. Many new players have arrived, we’ll see game by game where we end up. I see Napoli and Juventus as equal favourites for the Scudetto, but Inter can get into the fight too. The most entertaining team are certainly Napoli.”

Some of the Viola academy players have already left, including Federico Bernardeschi to their arch rivals Juventus.

“We are friends and still keep in contact. It’s disappointing to see him wearing another jersey, especially as I am sure he’ll become a great champion.”

The comparisons with his father are inevitable, especially as they have the same rather curious running style.

“I too hunch over when I start to spring. I often watch back videos of his goals. He was a great striker. I need to learn not to protest so much on the field. I still remember I was sent off against Pescara last season and the moment I got home, my mother gave me a tongue-lashing.

“When I made my Serie A debut at the Juventus Stadium, one of the stewards didn’t want to let me back on the pitch for the second half. He didn’t recognise me and had to ask his boss for permission to let me on.

“Now it’s lovely to see kids get excited when they see me. I would’ve felt the same way as them if five years ago I’d met my idol Kaka.

“The players that excite me now are Antoine Griezmann of Atletico Madrid and Angel Di Maria, even if he doesn’t play much at PSG.”

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