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Thursday August 8 2019
Don't sleep on Donnarumma

Brescia are back in Serie A and Alfredo Donnarumma is a name you’ll be hearing a lot this season, explains Kaustubh Pandey.

Alfredo Donnarumma’s time has finally come. The 28-year-old can at last receive his Serie A debut after the step up was cruelly snatched from him last summer.

No relation to Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi, although they are both from the Naples area, Alfredo has come close to seeing it all in Italian football. Before Brescia, he had been at clubs like Salernitana, Teramo, Cittadella and Como, playing at multiple levels. 

Donnarumma is a promotion specialist as he has been pivotal in the last two Serie B championship victories. Despite scoring 21 goals in 38 games for Empoli in the 2017-18 season, he was ditched by the Tuscans once they’d booked that ticket to the top flight and sold to Brescia. 

Now Empoli are back down in Serie B and he’s done it again, setting a personal best with 25 goals in 32 matches to earn the Rondinelle promotion, but this time he’s clinging to the bandwagon. Can he follow in the footsteps of Brescia legend Dario Hubner and take the Capocannoniere title? It could be worth a flutter, and you can receive your bethard special offer with thebookiesoffers.co.uk.

Hailing from the same town as Ciro Immobile (Torre Annunziata), Donnarumma is a poacher in front of goal and is usually always there whenever Brescia need him. He has that nose for where the ball will drop and where the spaces lie for him to take up and tap the ball home - a quality that is in high demand anywhere in Europe.

Last season, Corini usually deployed a narrow 4-3-1-2 shape in which Donnarumma played up front with his strike partner Ernesto Torregrossa. The pair complemented each other very well, and while Torregrossa can also be used as a poacher, he is a better technician than Donnarumma. What better than a striker who can play (sometimes drop deep) and also stay right up there to snatch anything from the defenders’ noses? It’s no wonder Torregrossa got as many as 11 assists last season and scored 12 times, while Donnarumma mainly dealt with putting the ball past the goalkeeper.

That isn’t to say that Donnarumma is bad technically. He has played on the left-wing multiple times in his career and has done so at theLe Rondinelle too. But even when he is in that position in a 4-3-3 shape, Donnarumma is constantly running in behind and giving the centre-backs worries. He can easily be used as a wide-target man who can sit in the space between the full-back and centre-back.

At one stage last season, the Neapolitan had scored a goal every 76 minutes - a stat which was better than that of Fabio Quagliarella, Cristiano Ronaldo and Duvan Zapata. When the season ended, Donnarumma had a minutes per goal ratio of 104. That is still a very good number for any striker. 

He may not be the tallest at 1.80m, but Donnarumma does have the muscle to stay on the ball and protect it. He isn’t the best at holding the ball up to bring others into play, but he thrives on being on the shoulder of the last defender and bursting his lungs while running after a loose ball like a warrior. It’s what will make him a fan favourite.

It is that hunger for goal that has brought Donnarumma this far in the Calcio pyramid and the journey isn’t over yet. With Torregrossa up front in that same 4-3-1-2 shape, Donnarumma can prove to be the surprise package from Serie B that bursts on to the top-flight stage.

Unlike Caputo, he is still young enough to make his mark and then earn a move to a bigger club.

Watch Serie A live in the UK on Premier Sports. https://subscribe.premiersports.tv/

Have your say...
@ Pinturicchio,

wow I'm a UK based, Football Italia fan, seems you enjoy just slating articles and genuine fans.

I'm part Italian and I follow Italian football, since USA 94!
I'm now in my 30's, a player like this mentioned above, deserves his chance.

I can imagine you're a fan that doesn't want Mario Balotelli to get back in the Italian squad.

I hope Donnarumma does well, fair play to him :)
on the 12th August, 2019 at 12:51pm
I'm a Juventino too since way back, and I don't really get your point Pinturicchio. The bashing is totally uncalled for. I think it's good that they write about all of calcio not only about top 5. Don't bash what others create, if you want "better" create your own.

What were you looking to achieve with your first post?

Football Italia was hiring a few weeks back, did you apply? That could be a good way for you to post your own amazing giraffe-fruit chronicles.
on the 12th August, 2019 at 9:13am
I'm a Juventino too since way back, and I don't really get your point Pinturicchio. The bashing is totally uncalled for. I think it's good that they write about all of calcio not only about top 5. Don't bash what others create, if you want "better" create your own.

What were you looking to achieve with your first post?

Football Italia was hiring a few weeks back, did you apply? That could be a good way for you to post your own amazing giraffe-fruit chronicles.
on the 12th August, 2019 at 9:13am
@Pinturicchio
Funny how this article had nothing to do with your beloved Juve yet you still jumped in and spouted your usual BS against this site. So don't tell us you can't help yourself in defending Juve when this article had nothing to do with them. You are the only self-loathing southerner troll on here, the rest of us want to have a nice discussion about Italian football and enjoy reading about less known stories like Alfredo Donnarumma's.
on the 9th August, 2019 at 10:17am
How can I possibly retort to their comeuppances on a site which primarily is a dungeon for trolls and dilettantes like them? I'll say just one thing, though - I do have a penchant to get into squabbles whilst defending the club I've loved for over 20 years - but that's an honour and a privilege for some like me, unlike plastic bsndwagoners like you.
on the 9th August, 2019 at 6:29am
@Pinturicchio Luca Toni was also late bloomer. He earned a move to Munich, Roma, Juve in his 30's and don't forget He won the World Cup.
Nobody knows the time for a footballer to get his success, I would love to see Donnarumma surprise everyone in his serie-a debut
on the 9th August, 2019 at 4:40am
Doesn’t sound like too many people like this Pinturricchio fellow.
on the 9th August, 2019 at 12:20am
@Pinturicchio, you appear to have an insatiable appetite for "low-hanging fruit", given how frequently you're so quick to rise and react to it.

Football Italia, please continue to lower your plums for Pinturicchio. See that he/she is well sated for the coming season. Thank you.
on the 8th August, 2019 at 7:01pm
The self-loathing southerner strikes again!
FI were hiring not long ago, have a crack we would all love to read your stuff.

Looking forward to watching Donnarumma in Serie A this season.
on the 8th August, 2019 at 6:55pm
Pinturicchio give it a rest- Not everyone is as lucky and gifted as ADP and Juventus. This guy has fought it out every year and never got what he deserved until now... and possibly more. Give credit where it's due. Donnarumma will be a surprise they are right, just watch.
on the 8th August, 2019 at 6:12pm
>The 28-year-old can at last receive his Serie A debut
>he is still young enough to make his mark and then earn a move to a bigger club.

Wow, that's cringe-inducing.

Not to mention

>he thrives on (sic)
>He thrives on that

FI needs to stop going for the low-hanging fruit I must say.
on the 8th August, 2019 at 5:12pm

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