Milan defender Alessio Romagnoli took a break from training with the Italian national team to speak about his club’s improved start to 2016-17.
He began by stating: “You are creating a block with Rossoneri because we are doing well. Players like Lapadula, who were the last to arrive, have also shown they are very strong.
“This is all down to the work of the club and we hope to bring more players to the national team. Perhaps young Italian players are not as poor as some people seem to think.”
When asked about the criticisms directed at him, Romagnoli brushed them off, insisting they do not affect his play.
“It has never worried me. You journalists have put a lot of expectation on me but it has never weighed heavy with me. I try to better myself every day.”
On his debut against Spain he explained: “The coach told me to stick close to Iniesta, because I have experienced playing in midfield it certainly helped me.
“To get to where I am I have had to sacrifice many things but being a footballer has given me lots of joy and I get paid for having fun.”
When asked about the stand-out moment so far in his short career, he looked more to the future than the past.
“Perhaps my first ever Serie A goal with Roma against Genoa and of course my debut for the national team.
“Remember, I’m still only 21 and I hope to go to Poland next summer for the European U21 championships. Every child dreams of playing for their country and I’ve always been told to never underestimate the opposition.”
Finally, on the subject of his club mate Gigio Donnarumma, Romagnoli declared: “Like myself, he wants to be the future of the national team and this depends on us. As a footballer you can never be satisfied.”