Filippo Inzaghi has rejected the idea that Milan’s No 9 shirt is cursed and claimed Ciro Immobile is currently “the best Italian player”.
No Milan No 9 has succeeded since Inzaghi retired in 2012, with Krzysztof Piatek becoming the latest casualty in January as he left for Hertha Berlin.
“It makes me smile,” the Benevento boss told Sky Sport Italia.
“Wearing Milan’s No 9 shirt is tough for anyone, but the curse doesn’t exist. If Ibrahimovic puts on the No 9 shirt, the curse is already over.
“It’s like when I should’ve had the curse of Van Basten and Weah. It’s not fair to retire my shirt and it wasn’t retired after Van Basten. It’s an important shirt that will score goals again.”
Immobile is on course to finish the season as Serie A top scorer for the third time in his career, so does Pippo see him replicating that form for Italy?
“Making comparisons isn’t easy, but I think the best Italian player is Immobile. He’s shown something unique in recent years.
“He’s the striker I like most and I think the national team can do well with a striker like him.
“I trained Cutrone at youth level and I know the desire he has. I think he’ll do well for Fiorentina.”
Finally, the 46-year-old paid tribute to brother and Lazio coach Simone.
“He’s better than me in everything, there’s everything to learn from Simone. He’s a modern coach.
“Seeing his Lazio is a sight to behold. Simone’s surprised me in every sense. He’s a sincere lad and sincere lads like him deserve such satisfaction.”