As Milan continue to produce great results, it’s easy to focus simply on the goalscorers and those who make a more tangible impact on our upturn in form.
Whether it’s Ante Rebic’s brilliant goalscoring impact, Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s influence since he returned in January or the foundation Franck Kessie and Ismael Bennacer give us in midfield, they’ve all received praise, and deservedly so as they’ve all been important for us.
And while this piece isn’t suggesting that Gianluigi Donnarumma has been entirely snubbed, it’s important to highlight just how pivotal he has been in our resurgence since the season restarted.
Cutting out mistakes, keeping concentration
In the eight games we’ve played since the campaign got back underway across Serie A and the Coppa Italia, we’ve conceded just eight goals and kept three clean sheets, taking Donnarumma’s total up to 13 for the entire season. In fact, he has the most in Serie A of any goalkeeper so far this year.
However, it’s not just the statistics that make for impressive viewing.
Just as he showed against Juventus to deny Daniele Rugani after we took the lead, at Napoli having made three vital saves early on in the encounter and then again in the win over Parma with his stop to deny Roberto Inglese with the clash finely poised at 2-1 in our favour, the Italian international is producing major moments in games that are proving to be decisive.
Whether it’s keeping us in a game or preserving our lead before we go on and kill the game, he’s not had a lot to do given how impressive and tight our backline has been in recent weeks, but when we need him he’s stepped up, and that says a lot about his maturity and concentration that he is capable of staying switched on at all times to produce these important contributions.
That said, he did receive some criticism for the two goals conceded against Napoli, but as per Football Italia, Stefano Pioli insisted that his belief was that Gigio was “blameless”, and given the first was a rebound with no defenders following up and the second took a deflection before beating him, he arguably has a point.
Further, Donnarumma’s distribution looks to have improved on the whole and he has cut those glaring errors out of his game for the most part, and so there is certainly a lot to like about his impact this season and for that he deserves praise.
All while speculation rages on over his future as his current contract expires in 2021, with Goal.com noting recent comments from Paolo Maldini on the club’s desire to keep him at San Siro, it’s hoped that gets cleared up as soon as possible as Donnarumma is once again showcasing his quality this season and Milan need to keep hold of their world-class talent who still has his best years ahead of him.