After signing a five-year contract with the Rossoneri, Sandro Tonali spoke to MilanTV about the transfer.
Tonali played one season at Milan on loan from Brescia. The Diavolo chose to buy him out but spent weeks to restructure the deal, lowering the total fee from €35m to €20m + youngster Giacomo Olzer.
As part of the negotiations, Tonali also agreed to lower his salary and will reportedly be earning €1.2m per season instead of €1.6m. Yesterday everything was finally formalized and announced, and Sandro will keep wearing the #8 jersey of Milan. The 21-year-old spoke with MilanTV:
On the permanent transfer: “Without my strong desire to come back, it would have been very difficult to make this deal happen. I’m very happy for myself, for Milan and for those who made it possible. In the end, it all turned out just fine.”
On his first year at Milan: “I’m really pleased because playing 37 games at Milan is like playing 100 with any other team, it’s a great achievement. I think I can grow more this season. I’m pleased, but I always aim higher.”
On what he was lacking: “One of the things we lacked last season, both the team and myself, was continuity – it’s the most difficult thing in football; we started the season really well, we slowed down and went on to end it on a high. The keyword for this year is continuity.”
On playing in the Champions League: “There’s no more waiting and there are no more excuses this season: my teammates and I are ready. We want to do better than what we’ve done so far, we have to row in the same direction, this is the most important aspect. The Champions League is the Champions League and everyone will give 110 or even 150 percent, it won’t be a problem. I’ve grown both on and off the pitch, which is really important at this stage of my career and of life. I’m more mature in many ways, not just a specific one. We’re happy the Coach is still with us because he knows us well; we all love him and he’s our Captain.”
On who he bonded with most last year: “At the beginning of last season, I’d really bonded with Daniel Maldini and Colombo who are almost my age. I was often with them but also with the rest of the players. We are a really solid group, I don’t have a closest friend – we all are.”
On Kjær: “Simon is even a greater Captain off the field than on it, we all know the kind of guy he is, he’s like a father to us because he’s one of the oldest and considers us like his sons.”
On Paolo Maldini: “We all see him in a different light, we can say; we’re looking at a legend, and he’s not just an average guy. We know he cares a lot for us and even getting to know him is indeed a pleasure, imagine what it’s like seeing him and talking to him every day, it’s great.”
On playing for the Azzurri: “It’s hard to predict my future in one word, this season will be very important to see if I can deserve to wear such an important jersey. I wish Italy the best of luck, they’ve been great so far: Forza Italia!”