With the signing of Samuel Chukwueze from Villarreal, AC Milan head coach Stefano Pioli can now rely on both flanks of his attacking department.
Today’s edition of La Gazzetta dello Sport (seen below) has a double-page spread titled: ‘Milan to the rhythm of Leao and Chukwueze. Rafa has a twin: the kings of dribbling’.
Milan bought one of the best pure dribblers on the planet for €20m plus bonuses, and as Kvicha Kvaratskhelia showed last season having someone who can beat a man regularly opens up all kinds of possibilities.
Chukwueze attempted 171 dribbles last season in LaLiga and 88 of them were successful, putting him sixth among all players in the top five European leagues.
To put it into context, in Italy nobody has managed to dribble 88 times in one season, not even Kvara or Rafael Leao. With Leao on one side and Chukwueze on the other, they could cause headaches for defenders who don’t know who and when to double.
Leao and Chukwueze as a pair rank above Kvara-Lozano, Barella-Lautaro, Pellegrini-Zalewski, Zaccagni-Felipe Anderson and Chiesa-Rabiot when it comes to combined dribbles.
Milan yesterday announced the signing of Chukwueze until 2028 and among the sentences that stood out the most from his interview was the following: “The way the fans kept sending me messages on Instagram was really decisive.”
The €4m net per season he will earn certainly helps, but it was the charm of joining the Rossoneri that convinced above all: “When my agent told me about Milan, I thought he was joking. I didn’t think twice or thrice.
“The last time I heard from Osimhen, he said to me: ‘Samuel, Milan is a beautiful club, one of the best, don’t hesitate’. He told me that the Rossoneri fans are truly incredible. I replied: ‘I hope you know that I will beat you’.”
Chukwueze brings a new rhythm to Milan and he will make the team even stronger in transition. He will often receive the ball wide on the sideline, as Pioli wants it, and will bring different characteristics from those of Pulisic with whom he will alternate.