Tonali admits being a Milan fan made him feel added pressure and explains turnaround

By Oliver Fisher -

Sandro Tonali has admitted that he felt the pressure upon joining AC Milan because of the fact that he is a boyhood fan of the club.

Tonali moved to Milan on an initial loan deal from Brescia during the summer of 2021 and his first full season at the club did not exactly go to plan as he suffered growing pains due to having to adapt to new expectations, new team-mates and new responsibilities.

However, he was bought permanently for a discounted fee and from there things turned upwards, with the Italy international playing a starring role in last season’s Scudetto win with some important goals.

Tonali was interviewed by Massimo Ambrosini and the pair chatted about life with the Rossoneri during a segment for DAZN, with his comments relayed by MilanNews, and he was asked about how his start to life with the Rossoneri went.

“My support for Milan stems from my father. He always followed Milan, he also went away, he was a huge fan, he was one of the Curva. He was always tense when Milan played,” he said.

“My first time at San Siro was a 1-0 Milan-Chievo with a goal by Seedorf in the last minute with a shot into the top corner. I followed Milan as a fan, I would not have never thought of playing with the Rossoneri shirt.

“In the summer of 2020 I had talked a lot with my mum, my girlfriend and my agent, I dreamed of Milan. The first days were a frenzy. The first year was difficult: dividing being a fan and player it wasn’t easy, but after a period of adjustment I made it.

“At the beginning it was a burden to wear this shirt, I was in a place where I had to try not to disappoint. I was scared, I came from Brescia, everything was different, I too changed with difficulty and with some obstacles, but with Pioli’s help I overcame everything.

“I talked a lot with the coach, he helped me a lot. And now he’s doing the same with other players who are experiencing what I’ve been through. I never thought I’d fail, playing with an empty stadium helped me in the beginning.

“[In the second year] I felt more confident and this gave me great strength. Being in charge then gave me further confidence. At that moment I realized I had made the leap in quality. I don’t forget the first months at Milan, but since second year I brought out what I had inside.”

Tags AC Milan Sandro Tonali

1 Comment

  1. Players like him, Maignan, Theo, Tomori and Bennacer is what Milan is about. They have that Milan DNA, humble leaders and examples on and off the field.

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