Brahim Diaz lifts lid on playing with Leao, pride of being No.10 and pre-Inter emotions

By Oliver Fisher -

Brahim Diaz has spoken about the pride he feels being the No.10 for AC Milan and also answered a question on his future at the club beyond June.

The playmaker is preparing for what is arguably the biggest two games of his career with Milan taking on city rivals Inter in a Champions League derby for the first time in 18 years, with the first leg tomorrow and the second leg on May 16.

It seems likely that the Spaniard will get the nod to start on the right side over Alexis Saelemaekers who will be diverted to the left given that Rafael Leao is still not 100% and trained individually on the eve of the game.

Diaz gave an interview to the Spanish newspaper Marca in view of what will be a historic occasion for Italian football on the biggest stage, with his comments relayed by MilanNews.

On the Champions League derby: “We’ve already faced them many times… It will be a crazy match, with many battles and where we will see which colours dominate the city. It will be exciting, for sure.

“Is there tension? We have had many finals in a row and we had little time to think. But as we know that we will face Inter, there is a derby atmosphere. It is palpable and people want match day to come. It is considered a very important match, two even, but this also represents a Champions League semi-final.”

On the differences between the Milan derby and the Madrid derby: “In the end, they are two derbies between teams always used to winning. In Milan, everything is very passionate. Football is life. Milan and Inter are two great teams who always want more and they want to stick out their chests to say, ‘I’m from this squad and this squad rules the city’. It will be a battle, no doubt.”

On Rafael Leao: “He’s a great player, with an incredible physique. Depending on the movement I make, I give him the ball on the foot or in space. You always have to give it to him, because he’s unstoppable in the match.

“We’re friends, we talk a lot and that makes everything easier. As soon as I turn around, I immediately look at him to try to create a danger. He is very fast. Is he similar to Vinicius? They have something similar and that is that they are both great players, in addition to the fact that they both start from the left.”

On having Milan’s number 10 shirt: “It’s something incredible, an honour, something very special for the value it has. I know everyone who has worn it and it fills me with pride, but I also like having that pressure of having to do always one step ahead. In Milan, the 10 was worn by the Ballon d’Or players, players who marked an era. For me, it’s an honour to wear the 10 for Milan.”

On his future: “Now I’m focused on Milan. I want to be at the top, one hundred per cent. A very important match is approaching and now I’m just thinking about giving my all.”

Tags AC Milan Brahim Diaz Milan Inter
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