Matteo Gabbia will begin the 2020-21 season the same way he ended 2019-20, by stumbling into an opportunity to show what he can do.
With Alessio Romagnoli out injured, the former Primavera centre-back was paired with Simon Kjaer for the season end and he did not disappoint, and with the captain still out he is likely to find space once again.
As Calciomercato.com notes, Milan chose to keep him at the club despite the interests of other Serie A clubs, and their decision to do so has proven to be the right one given the lack of defensive depth.
Gabbia made his debut three years ago now when Vincenzo Montella played him against Skhenija in the second leg of the preliminaries of the Europa League that season. He was then loaned to Lucchese in Serie C, before returning and finding space due to injuries to Leo Duarte and Mateo Musacchio.
Parma and Genoa came forward to try and loan him but the negotiations never took off. Milan considers him an excellent substitute for Alessio Romagnoli, and if his performance against Shamrock Rovers convinces Pioli, his stay with the Rossoneri would have even greater credibility.