TO ANALYSE – The young (22 years old) Italian goalkeeper did not miss his great debut in the Champions League on Tuesday against Manchester City (2-0).
A sovereign midfielder, the decisive “MNM”, Marquinhos in charge of defense … Of course, PSG sometimes suffered Tuesday night, against Manchester City. But the victory is not stolen (2-0) and there are many reasons for satisfaction for Mauricio Pochettino and his staff. Gianluigi Donnarumma is one all to himself. If he landed in Paris with a solid club experience with AC Milan (251 matches) and a starting status in the Italian team (36 selections), with a coronation at Euro 2020 and a title best player of the tournament as a bonus, the 22-year-old stalwart had never played in the Champions League before Tuesday night. On the first day, it was Keylor Navas who kept the Parisian cages. And the Costa Rican doorman, brilliant since his arrival in the capital two years ago, took the opportunity to remind everyone that he is still one of the best specialists in the post, at 34 years old. Man “hurry“According to his own admission,” Gigio “, 22, nevertheless demonstrated, against the Skyblues, that talent does not wait for the number of years.
Overall reassuring in his ball catch, serene on his line and even authoritarian in the air, which is not necessarily his strong point at the start, Donnarumma disgusted the City forwards during this shock of the second day of phase of hens. Seven saves, three punches, a center captured. A first-rate performance for the neophyte goalkeeper in C1. Despite his young age and inexperience at this stage of the competition, Pochettino did not hesitate to trust him. He must not have been disappointed with the result.
The football gods with him
Faced with an opponent of this caliber and knowing that each of his deeds and gestures would be watched by the entire planet, and in particular his rival Navas, Gianluigi Donnarumma could however have been impressed, feverish. The opposite happened in this Parc des Princes in fusion. On top of that, the football gods were on his side, with that double crossbar in the 26th minute. First the head of Raheem Sterling from six meters, then this absolutely incredible failure of Bernardo Silva, one meter from the goal. The baraka.
In recent years, PSG have already tried to cohabit two potential titular goalkeepers. It is clear that it did not work. Leonardo tried all the same, pushing aside a well-established hierarchy and a team that worked perfectly, with Navas and Sergio Rico. The Brazilian sporting director did not want to pass up the opportunity Donnarumma, free this summer. And this despite the extension of Navas until 2024 a few weeks ago. A choice for the future. And also for the present. “I came here to play. I will give my best to be the holderSaid Donnarumma again in this interview with C+. And to add: “Competition does not scare me. Keylor is an exceptional goalkeeper but I am here to play. Competition will be positive for both, it will allow me to grow. There is always competition in big teams. She is an exceptional person, we are friends, there will be no problem.»
No established hierarchy
Except for Mauricio Pochettino, who will end up with a Cornelian choice in every game: Navas or Donnarumma, Donnarumma or Navas? «I will decide before each match“, He confines himself to repeating each time the question of the hierarchy of the guards is put to him in a press conference. And our Italian colleagues do not miss the opportunity to ask it regularly … One thing is certain: no other club in the world can rely on two goalkeepers of this caliber. Some would already be happy to have only one of the two … To see if this alternation can continue throughout the season without one of the two taking offense and their performance suffers. In the meantime, Donnarumma demonstrated Tuesday evening, against the vice-champions of Europe, that he is not only a keeper of the future. Already all of a great.