AC Milan have seen the best version of Sandro Tonali this season and he will be part of the future core of both his club and hopefully his country.
As reported by La Gazzetta dello Sport (via MilanNews), the midfielder promised fans that they would ‘see the real Tonali this season’ last July and now he is one of the first names on the teamsheet having fully adapted to life as a Milan player.
He is now aiming to take on the national team as well and given how poor Italy were during their World Cup qualification failure, he certainly has a case. Tonali already has 600 minutes more than he managed in the whole of last season and has improved every aspect of his performance.
Compared to his counterparts within Serie A, Tonali intercepts more balls (0.93 per game, against 0.64 average for the role) and gets dribbled past less (0.54 versus 0.77). It has been debated whether the former Brescia star is more like Pirlo or Gattuso, but Tonali is simply a version of himself because he has unique characteristics.
He has become a point of reference for his team-mates and for the coach, and sooner or later it will be his turn too will wear the captain’s armband of his boyhood club.