Stefano Nava gives insight on son Lapo: “He has an advantage that is also a flaw”

By Oliver Fisher -

Lapo Nava’s father Stefano Nava has given some insight on what his son is like from a character point of view, and also the leadership Mike Maignan has shown.

Stefano Nava is a player who knows all about the big occasions having been part of that legendary Milan side in the early 1990s, albeit being mostly a back-up for players such as Franco Baresi, Paolo Maldini, Mauro Tassotti, and Alessandro Costacurta.

Now, his son Lapo could be the next player to wear a ‘Nava’ shirt for Milan. The fact that Mike Maignan is suspended and Marco Sportiello is injured makes him the back-up for Antonio Mirante in tonight’s game against Juventus, so he will have to be ready in case the 40-year-old runs into any issues.

Stefano Nava spoke during an interview with La Gazzetta dello Sport about his son’s call-up and the relationship that he has with Mike Maignan, with his comments relayed by PianetaMilan.

On what kind of guy Lapo is: “Of course, he’s still that guy in the AC Milan tracksuit photographed on the tram, he hasn’t changed a bit.”

On how he has been in recent days: “He has an advantage that is also a flaw, and I am moreover like him: he doesn’t particularly let his emotions show, his attitude is absolutely identical in any circumstance.

“Also because, upon closer inspection, nothing happened. However, of course, this time there is a situation out of the ordinary, and for a footballer being able to manage the emotional aspect is very important.”

On how Lapo Nava would react if he were to play in Milan-Juventus tonight: “I imagine that, despite his calmness, it would be very exciting for him. For me, I would sit in an armchair and say ‘okay, now let’s see what happens’. As if I were at the cinema, curious to see how good that film would be.

“Of course, it would be a wonderful thing to be able to experience a question like this, because a lot of work has been done in the youth sector to be ready for this type of situation.”

On Siniša Mihajlović who gave Gianluigi Donnarumma his debut aged 16: “First of all, let’s start by saying, and I say it with the coach’s eye, that in a match like this the experience factor counts a lot, perhaps more than technique.

“Antonio Mirante has accumulated extraordinary experience and this is a match in which experience will have an impact. But there are also those coaches who say ‘he’s young, he’s worth it, why not?'”

On the emotions of Lapo’s promotion to the senior side: “Lapo had finished his career in the youth team and there were two options: go and play on loan or stay in the first team. There was a discussion with the club, which suggested the second option.

“And I too, based on my experience and knowing my son, felt it was more appropriate to stay to complete his training. Obviously I agree with him. A shared choice, in short. Seeing him in the first team is a great feeling.”

On Mike Maignan’s lessons: “Lapo is lucky enough to have a French mother and to have attended French school, so the relationship with Maignan blossomed immediately. He also acted as his translator and Mike took him under his wing.

“When I went to Milanello I said to Maignan ‘take him under your wing and make him understand what it means to be a professional’. He told me not to worry.”

On what he talks about with Lapo: “My main suggestion, which I don’t repeat to him every day, is that work surpasses talent. In general I believe that the parent should not interfere, except when I am asked for an opinion.

“I’m not the one who goes to him, but there are times when he asks me for reflection. And so in that case I offer him my experience, also and above all from a critical point of view.”

Tags AC Milan Lapo Nava Stefano Nava
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