Sportiello: “I Don’t Think Atalanta Will Tear Their Hair Out for Me”

Milan number 57 Marco Sportiello is behind Mike Maignan and Antonio Mirante in Stefano Pioli’s list of goalkeeper priorities, but nonetheless sees the Rossoneri tactician as a communicative leader to work with. The ex-Atalanta keeper moved to Milan on a Bosman deal, and revealed it was a decision he couldn’t deny himself from taking.

Speaking at the Milanello press room in his maiden press conference, the Atalanta youth product dished on a plethora of topics.

“It’s the last step of my career. Being here is a dream. It’s not a cliché, it really is a dream. I’ve matured a lot, especially in the last three years. I had already chosen to come to Milan, then I became a regular at Atalanta. It was difficult to say no to Milan: I gave everything to Atalanta, I don’t think they’ll tear their hair out for me.”

Sportiello also spoke about playing under Pioli.

“We’ve always spoken in recent years. We’re on the second day. I already know Pioli and some of his staff. Pioli talks to you a lot, you talk a lot, he explains things very well.”

He spoke of Maignan leading the line of keepers at Milan.

“When Maignan arrived, when we played him against Atalanta, I told the coach that this was very strong player, and he confirmed it. For me, even though I’m 31, I can learn a lot from Maignan and that’s what I want to do. I’m a bit of an old-school goalkeeper, he’s more modern and I want to learn from him.”

Sportiello then revealed the shotstoppers he draws inspiration from.

“There are many goalkeepers. There is Ter Stegen who I really like, even Handanovic, despite being from Inter, he was one of my role models because he was very strong. Then Courtois, Oblak. Each with his own characteristics, but there is none that I particularly look up to.”