Dayot Upamecano is a player in demand following his exploits for RB Leipzig.

Upamecano attracted plenty of interest before re-signing at Bundesliga side Leipzig in July.

Manchester United have been linked previously and are reportedly plotting another move.

 

TOP STORY – UNITED WANT UPAMECANO

Manchester United will pursue a cut-price deal for RB Leipzig star Dayot Upamecano, according to The Times.

United have been keen to bolster their defence and the Red Devils were previously linked to France centre-back Upamecano, who has also caught the eye of the likes of Liverpool, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and Barcelona.

Upamecano signed a new deal in July, though the contract reportedly includes a release clause of around £38million (€42m) at the end of the season.

 

ROUND-UP

- Bild reports a third round of negotiations regarding a new contract for Bayern star David Alaba failed. Alaba will become a free agent at the end of the season. Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester City and Barca are believed to be interested.

Milan are interested in Schalke centre-back Ozan Kabak and Hellas Verona's Matteo Lovato, claims Gazzetta dello Sport. Kabak has also been linked to Premier League champions Liverpool.

- Tuttosport reports Barca and Juventus could be involved in another swap deal. After exchanging Miralem Pjanic and Arthur at the start of the season, Juve's Federico Bernardeschi and Barca forward Ousmane Dembele could also move in opposite directions.

Barca could raid PSV for Donyell Malen as an alternative to Lyon captain Memphis Depay, according to Mundo Deportivo. Barca tried to sign Depay in the previous transfer window but a move did not material as his contract expires at season's end.

Fabian Ruiz continues to attract interest from his native Spain.

The former Real Betis midfielder joined Napoli in 2018 and he has starred for the Italian club.

Real Madrid are reportedly keen to bring Fabian back to Spain.

 

TOP STORY – FABIAN TOPS MADRID'S LIST

Real Madrid have renewed their interest in Napoli star Fabian Ruiz, according to Calciomercato.

Fabian, who is contracted to Serie A outfit Napoli until 2023, has been linked with Madrid, LaLiga rivals Barcelona and Manchester City previously.

The Spain international continues to impress Zinedine Zidane's Madrid.

 

ROUND-UP

Manchester United remain hopeful of signing Borussia Dortmund forward Erling Haaland, claims The Athletic. United tried to sign Haaland before the Norwegian opted to join Dortmund from Salzburg in January. Haaland's €75million (£68m) release clause becomes active in 2022 and United are prepared to wait amid reported interest from the likes of Madrid and Juventus.

- The Athletic also says United are still trying to prise Jadon Sancho from Dortmund after failing to land the England star during the previous transfer window. Sancho has also been linked to Liverpool, Paris Saint-Germain, Madrid and Barcelona.

- AS reports Milan are weighing up a January move for PSG striker Mauro Icardi. The former Inter captain completed a permanent transfer from the Nerazzurri at the start of the season.

- With doubts over Thomas Tuchel's future in Paris, Le10 Sport says the PSG head coach has received approaches from several Premier League clubs. Tuchel is out of contract at the end of the season and sporting director Leonardo is reportedly looking to move on from the German.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored twice but Milan's perfect start to season was ended by Roma after a thrilling 3-3 San Siro draw on Monday.

Ibrahimovic put Milan ahead early on with deft finish from close range but Edin Dzeko equalised shortly afterwards with a header.

Alexis Saelemaekers edged Milan in front again with a composed finish only for Jordan Veretout to draw Roma level from the penalty spot.

Ibrahimovic netted a penalty of his own 11 minutes from time, but Milan were denied a fifth consecutive victory when Marash Kumbulla volleyed in a dramatic late equaliser.

 

 

Star goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma has tested positive for coronavirus, Milan announced in a statement on Monday. 

Donnarumma was among five cases confirmed by the club following tests carried out on Sunday, along with Jens Petter Hauge and three other members of the group. 

The Rossoneri are top of Serie A ahead of Monday's game in hand against Roma. 

They will now be without Donnarumma and Hauge for that match at San Siro, but the remainder of the squad tested negative on Monday. 

"All are asymptomatic, were immediately subjected to home isolation and the local health authorities were informed," Milan said in a statement.

Donnarumma has been an ever-present in Milan's eight league and Europa League games this season. 

In Serie A, Donnarumma has kept three clean sheets in four matches, conceding only in the 2-1 derby win over Inter as Milan have earned 12 points. 

He has made 11 saves while his save percentage of 90.9 per cent is the best in the Italian top flight. 

Donnarumma's absence would appear to allow Ciprian Tatarusanu to make his Milan debut after signing from Lyon in September. 

Tatarusanu made just two league appearances in his single season with Lyon, keeping one clean sheet and making nine saves at a rate of 81.8 per cent. 

Hauge's positive test comes as a blow after scoring his first Rossoneri goal in stoppage time against Celtic last week. 

That was the 21-year-old's second Milan appearance, having netted against the Italian giants for former club Bodo/Glimt in Europa League qualifying prior to his transfer.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic could be ready to extend his contract at Milan after a fine start to the season. 

Ibrahimovic returned to the Serie A club in January, extending his deal in August through until the end of the 2020-21 season. 

However, the veteran striker could be set to remain at the club for longer, per speculation in Italy.

 

TOP STORY – IBRAHIMOVIC COULD RENEW AT MILAN UNTIL 2022

Ibrahimovic's agent Mino Raiola is already studying a plan to extend the striker's deal at Milan until 2022, according to Corriere della Sera.

The 39-year-old has scored four goals in two Serie A games for league leaders Milan this season, including a brace in the derby win over rivals Inter at the weekend.

Ibrahimovic netted 10 goals and provided five assists in 18 league appearances in 2019-20.

ROUND-UP

- Unhappy about being left on the bench against Crotone, Paulo Dybala's future at Juventus is again a subject of interest. However, Tuttosport reports the aim is still for the playmaker – who is contracted until 2022 – to renew his deal before January.

- Barcelona could be set for good news. Goal reports Barcelona are working on new deals for Frenkie de Jong and Clement Lenglet after agreeing to a contract with goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen. Meanwhile, AS says Gerard Pique is ready to accept a pay cut.

- Phil Jones is yet to play for Manchester United this season and could leave in January. The Sun reports United could demand £20million for the defender, who is contracted until 2023.

- Maurizio Sarri could be set for a return to coaching. CalcioMercato reports the former Juventus and Chelsea boss is a target for Fiorentina amid pressure on Giuseppe Iachini after the club collected just four points from their opening four Serie A games of the season.

- Out of contract at Marseille at season's end, Florian Thauvin could be set for a move. Le 10 Sport says Milan are interested in the forward.

- With Virgil van Dijk out due to a serious knee injury, Liverpool could be looking for a defender in January. Football Insider says Brighton and Hove Albion defender Ben White remains on the Premier League champions' radar.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic has had a greater impact on Italian football than Cristiano Ronaldo, according to former Milan and Juventus head coach Alberto Zaccheroni. 

The 39-year-old has made a considerable impact since rejoining Milan in January, scoring 11 goals in 20 appearances in the second half of the 2019-20 campaign.

He has been in equally impressive form this season despite missing almost a month after contracting COVID-19, taking his tally to four goals in just two games with a double against Inter at the weekend. 

One of the best strikers of his generation, Ibrahimovic spent two years with Milan earlier in his distinguished career, a stint that included securing the Serie A title in 2011. 

Ronaldo, meanwhile, has been just as prolific since he joined Juve from Real Madrid in 2018, scoring 68 goals in 91 appearances across all competitions. 

Zaccheroni, though, is in no doubt which player has had more influence on Serie A. 

"I have coached great champions in my career, from [Oliver] Bierhoff to [George] Weah up to Adriano but the only regret I have is that I never trained Ibrahimovic," he told Il Giornale.

"He is eternal and I still don't understand why he never won the Ballon d'Or.

"In Italy, he has shifted the balance more than Ronaldo. It is no coincidence that many young players have grown exponentially since his arrival.

"He doesn't just score. He transmits confidence to all his team-mates, carrying the team on his shoulders in difficult moments."

Zlatan Ibrahimovic believes Milan can end Juventus' Scudetto dominance after his double ensured a 2-1 derby win over Inter.

Milan are top of Serie A with the league's only 100 per cent record after seeing off their city rivals.

Ibrahimovic put Milan 2-0 up inside 16 minutes, with Romelu Lukaku pulling one back before the half-hour for Inter.

Inter could not complete the comeback, though, meaning Milan are three points ahead of Atalanta through four games.

Stefano Pioli's men have not lost since a 2-1 defeat to Genoa in March and Ibrahimovic sees no reason Milan cannot regain the title they last won in 2011 before Juve's run of nine successive Scudetti.

He told Sky Sport Italia: "We are at the beginning. Since I arrived, the team has been doing great things, especially after the lockdown.

"The team is growing a lot, the mentality is different, the young people take more responsibility. They all train great.

"I feel a lot of responsibility; I'm the oldest in the team. A situation that I really like, everyone follows me, and everyone is hungry to win.

"We are thinking one game at a time. Every game is like a final. When I arrived the goal was Europe and we got there.

"The goal for the club is to arrive again in Europe, my personal goals are different, but I keep them to myself.

"Scudetto? In my opinion, there is a sure possibility, one who believes can do anything. We believe it, then in the end we will see how it goes. It is still a long road."

Inter boss Antonio Conte said bad luck was more to blame than his side's defending for their 2-1 derby defeat to Milan on Saturday.

Two goals from Zlatan Ibrahimovic secured victory for the Serie A leaders, with Romelu Lukaku's effort proving to be mere consolation.

Inter created plenty of chances throughout, with Lukaku spurning two good openings and seeing VAR intervene with an offside call after he had initially won a penalty.

Achraf Hakimi also turned a header wide with the goal at his mercy as Inter managed just one shot on target in the second half.

"We're sorry to have lost a well-played game on our part. They were good and I think also a little lucky," Conte told Sky Sport Italia.

"We create a lot of chances to score goals in every game. We have to become more cynical to take advantage of them. But at the same time, I have nothing to blame the boys for. They fought to the end to equalise. We weren't very lucky."

Ibrahimovic's first came from a rebound after Samir Handanovic had saved his penalty, the veteran striker having been brought down in the box by Aleksandar Kolarov.

Kolarov, playing on the left of the back three, was nowhere to be seen when Ibrahimovic scored his second three minutes later at the end of a swift counter-attack.

Conte, though, insists such a position is "the best role" for the 34-year-old, saying: "He played it for the national team and for Roma. For his moment in his career, it's the right position."

When asked if Inter were wrong to allow the experienced centre-back Diego Godin to leave after last season, Conte replied: "Every decision was evaluated by the club and it's not up to me.

"What I must do is to try to get the best out of the players I am given, and I think that's something I do very well. If you want to talk about other matters, you can ask other people about them."

For the first time since January 2016, Milan is red and black. For the first time in eight seasons, the Rossoneri might just be in a title race.

Saturday's 2-1 victory over Inter ended a nine-game winless run in Serie A away games against their city rivals, who had won each of the previous four derbies. It was also Milan's 1,400th victory in the top flight, a tally only previously reached by Inter and Juventus.

But this was all about the present, about a Milan side who look capable at last of at least returning to the Champions League. They are vibrant, spirited and clinical – everything a modern team needs to be. It just so happens that their star performer turned 39 two weeks ago.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored twice in three minutes at San Siro to put Milan on their way. He won a penalty after driving beyond Aleksandar Kolarov and drawing a foul and was then alert enough to turn in the rebound after Samir Handanovic saved his spot-kick. He struck again 16 minutes in, an emphatic first-time finish at the end of a swift break that left Inter on their knees. He now has eight goals in this fixture, six for Milan and two for the Nerazzurri, and is only four behind record-holder Giuseppe Meazza. He tested positive for coronavirus three weeks ago.

Milan rode their luck from there, it's true. Romelu Lukaku, who pulled back a goal in the first half, could conceivably have scored four. He spurned a free header, won a penalty only for VAR to intervene with an offside call, and he prodded wide when it seemed harder to miss. The man who had scored with every 1.7 shots in Serie A this year looked suddenly without poise in front of goal.

But this is a mark of this Milan, Stefano Pioli's Milan, a team who have scored in 24 league games in a row, taken 57 points in 2020 and won their first four league matches of a season for the first time since 1995-96: after years in the relative wilderness, they are not pushovers any more. They make you falter.

Ibrahimovic is at the heart of that. He exudes authority and demands success, even now, less than a year out from his 40th birthday. Only Silvio Piola has scored twice in four separate Serie A games after turning 38 other than the Swede, and there is no doubt Ibrahimovic will do so again. The man who scored 14 goals in 29 games to fire Milan to their last Scudetto in 2010-11 is dragging them into another title race few would have expected 12 months ago.

How Inter boss Antonio Conte would have wished for such displays from his own veterans. This was not a game that reflected well on his insistence on signing experienced heads over exuberant talent.

Kolarov distributed well as part of the back three, completing 39 of 49 passes, but looked every inch a converted full-back who turns 35 in November as even Ibrahimovic ran beyond him. Arturo Vidal, a Conte stalwart from their Juventus days, was a midfield wrecking ball who was taken off before he was sent off. Alexis Sanchez and Christian Eriksen were thrown on in hope more than expectation, as Inter ended the second half with just one shot on target.

Inter's title credentials may have taken a hit, but Milan's are only getting stronger. Four wins from four, nine goals scored and one conceded is form to be reckoned with, however early in the season it may be.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored twice to give Milan a 2-1 win over Inter in a dramatic Derby della Madonnina as he marked his return from having coronavirus in style.

The 39-year-old had missed four games and not played for almost a month after contracting COVID-19, but he put Stefano Pioli's men two goals up inside 16 minutes on Saturday.

Romelu Lukaku got Inter back in it before the break but, despite second-half pressure, Antonio Conte's side could not force an equaliser as their four-match derby winning streak was ended.

Milan stunned Inter with two goals in the space of three minutes, both scored by Ibrahimovic.

After being sent through on goal by Hakan Calhanoglu, the Swede drew a clumsy foul from Aleksandar Kolarov and took the resulting penalty himself.

Samir Handanovic dived to his right to make an impressive save, only for Ibrahimovic to convert a left-footed rebound.

Ibrahimovic then struck again after a superb counter-attack that also involved Calhanoglu resulted in Rafael Leao sending in a superb cross from the left, which he impressively converted with a controlled first-time finish.

Lukaku made no mistake in the 28th minute as he tucked in from close range after Gianluigi Donnarumma inadvertently touched Ivan Perisic's driven cross into his path.

Lautaro Martinez then had a header cleared off the line by Simon Kjaer and an even better chance in the air, this time from Lukaku, was somehow sent wide by the unmarked Belgium striker at the end of a breathless first half.

A third headed chance went begging after the break, Achraf Hakimi off target with a diving effort as Inter upped the pressure, while substitute Rade Krunic fired wide when he should have wrapped up a Milan win at the other end.

There was one more twist when Inter were awarded a penalty when Donnarumma was adjudged to have brought down Lukaku in the closing stages but VAR ruled the striker had strayed offside before the incident as in-form Milan held on to celebrate a famous triumph.

Inter will be hoping to equal records when they meet Milan in the first derby of the 2020-21 season on Saturday.

The Nerazzurri have won the past four Serie A meetings with their city rivals and have only twice managed to win five in succession, in both 1979 and 1983.

They are also unbeaten in nine home league games against the Rossoneri, winning six and drawing three. Stretching that run to 10 would equal another club record.

Meanwhile, Antonio Conte is bidding to become the first Inter coach in history to win his first three derbies in all competitions and, given they won two and drew one of their first three games in 2020-21, it would take a brave soul to bet against them.

A brave soul is just who Milan have leading the line.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic, now cleared to play after missing four games in all competitions following a positive coronavirus test, has reasons to feel confident against his old club.

The veteran has been involved in five goals (four scored, one assisted) in four league games for Milan against Inter, even though three of those fixtures ended in defeats.

Among active players, nobody can match his goal tally in this Serie A fixture: four with Milan, and two with Inter. A particularly profitable outing at San Siro would get him closer to the all-time record of 12, held by the esteemed former striker Giuseppe Meazza.

Beyond the goal threat, goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma says Ibrahimovic's mere presence makes the prospect of facing Inter – a team they have not beaten in the league in almost five years – less intimidating.

"We all wanted him to be part of the match and that is the case. With Ibra on the pitch, Inter are less scary," the 21-year-old said.

"He is excited for the derby and will help us. Doing well in the derby would give us a lot of strength in terms of the championship; we are still at the beginning but it can give us strength."

Ibrahimovic certainly has a head for the occasion. Since his return to the club in January, only Edin Dzeko (23) and Andrea Belotti (20) have attempted more headed shots than Ibrahimovic (19), while no player has scored more headed goals (4).

Inter might be favourites, particularly given the form of Romelu Lukaku, who boasts league-leading figures of a goal for every 1.7 shots in Serie A this year among players to have at least 15 attempts on target. But there is no denying that, in 2020, Milan have found their groove.

Only Atalanta (56) have taken more points this year in Serie A and Stefano Pioli's men are on a 23-game scoring streak in the league, their best since 1973. Indeed, since the coronavirus-enforced hiatus, no teams have scored more goals than the giants of Lombardy's capital, who have each hit 42.

Milan are also chasing league win number 1,400, a tally only Inter and Juventus have previously reached. What better occasion to hit that milestone?

Milan boss Stefano Pioli says Zlatan Ibrahimovic is raring to go after recovering from coronavirus ahead what he believes will be a "spectacular" derby against city rivals Inter.

Ibrahimovic tested positive for COVID-19 on September 24, three days after he had scored a Serie A double in the 3-0 win over Bologna.

Milan confirmed last week the striker rwas clear of the virus after having two negative tests, allowing him to leave a period of self-isolation that had caused him to miss four matches.

That put the 39-year-old in contention to play at least some part in Saturday's crunch Serie A clash, with the two Milan clubs looking as good as they have done for many years.

"Zlatan has been smiling and is in a positive and determined frame of mind," Pioli told reporters as Milan look to win their opening four league games for the first time since 1995 under Fabio Capello.

"He has only been training for a week but is feeling fine. He had a problem, but I have found him to be the same as always.

"He is ready to play, but we still need to assess how many minutes he has got in his legs.

"Our start to the season with three league wins and going through in Europe was important and what I hoped for - now Zlatan's return is an additional boost going into the derby."

Milan are unbeaten since March – a run of 19 games in all competitions – while Inter are two points behind them after finishing second and reaching the Europa League final in Antonio Conte's first season.

Except for Atalanta (56), Milan (54) and Inter (47) are the two teams who have gained the most points in Serie A in 2020. 

Pioli added: "I am expecting a spectacular game. We will be facing a side with a system that sees players occupy precise positions on the pitch. 

"Inter are very strong, but, like all teams, also have weaknesses. We need to remain composed and understand when it is necessary to press and when we need to bide our time. 

"We will be intense and will not hold off. This will also apply to them but we have our own identity and way of playing out on the pitch.

"For us, the tests never stop: we know that this will be an important and difficult test, but we have prepared well in the little time we had available and feel ready."

Inter only finished one point behind champions Juventus last season, with Conte now looking to become the first Inter coach ever to win their first three Milan derbies.

Pioli added: "Unfortunately, there won’t be a crowd, but we’ll take to the pitch aware of the importance of this match and what it means. We feel the rivalry and it will be a heartfelt match.

"Our journey began a year ago, but I can also say that we’re still in the early stages. We still have plenty of room for improvement and will be facing the side everyone is tipping to win the title.

"But we are going to take to the pitch with the objective to be better than them. They are doing well, so beating such a strong side would give us enthusiasm and even more confidence in the qualities we have."

Alexis Sanchez has not been ruled out of the derby between Inter and Milan despite returning from international duty with a muscle strain.

Sanchez and Chilean compatriot Arturo Vidal were the last of Inter's players to return following their participation in a pair of South American World Cup qualifying games for their country.

Both were on target in a 2-2 draw with Colombia on Tuesday, though Sanchez may be reduced to the role of spectator for the Milan derby.

Speaking at a media conference, Inter coach Antonio Conte said: "He came back with a muscle strain last night [Thursday].

"We will do some evaluations today during training. It is inevitable that we will be very careful because this is the first of a cycle of seven games that will be played every three days.

"We will take the right risk, that's for sure. If Sanchez will be available it is because he will give guarantees and because he himself takes the responsibility of saying that he is fine."

Asked by a member of the Chilean press about reports Sanchez had already been ruled out, Conte replied: "He was visited today by doctors, he is to be evaluated during training by hearing his opinion and feeling with his body, and possibly with fatigue, then we will make decisions. Nothing is ruled out at the moment."

Conte will have to alter his preparations for Saturday's game given the tight turnaround from the international fixtures.

He said: "Surely if I had had the possibility to choose, I would have preferred to have at least one more day to prepare, but we know that there are calendars to be respected, nationally and internationally, and we will adapt.

"We will prepare the game today, we will not have much time between video analysis and the blackboard to shorten the training a little, which should not be too intense and demanding since they played a short time ago."

The derby would normally be contested amid a cacophonous atmosphere at San Siro, with the stakes of this famous fixture only heightened by the two sides' respective strong starts to the new season.

Milan have a 100 per cent record in Serie A with three wins from three, while Inter are also unbeaten but two points behind the Rossoneri.

"Playing without an audience is not nice," said Conte. "We work, we sweat just to satisfy the people who come to the stadium, who often and willingly give up something from their private life to pay for the ticket.

"We are sorry that there is not this possibility, this exchange of emotions, between those who play during the match and the fan in the stands.

"I repeat a concept again: let's try to be as collaborative and proactive as possible to get out of this situation. We help those who have to make decisions.

"To the fans, who were important in the comeback in the last derby, I say that we will always give our best for the colours of our jersey."

What does the future hold for Kylian Mbappe?

The Paris Saint-Germain and France forward is not short of options as Europe's elite eye a blockbuster transfer.

But Real Madrid are believed to be Mbappe's preference.

 

TOP STORY – MBAPPE WANTS MADRID MOVE  

Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappe is only thinking about joining Real Madrid amid interest from Barcelona and Liverpool, according to the front page of Friday's AS.

Mbappe is reportedly unwilling to extend his PSG contract, which expires in 2022.

Madrid are eyeing a 2021 swoop for Mbappe, and while LaLiga rivals Barca and Premier League champions Liverpool are also interested, the French forward wants to move to the Santiago Bernabeu.

 

ROUND-UP

- Sport claims Barcelona have already agreed to sign Lyon captain Memphis Depay in January. The report says Barca are now trying to reduce salaries at the club as they look to resolve the futures of Ousmane Dembele and Martin Braithwaite. Dembele was linked with a deadline-day move to Manchester United.

Juventus are set to reignite their interest in Lyon star Houssem Aouar, reports Calciomercato. Aouar was heavily linked to Arsenal before the transfer window closed, while PSG have also been credited with an interest.

Milan and Serie A rivals Juve will go head-to-head to sign Salzburg midfielder Luka Sucic, says Calciomercato. The 18-year-old has only made two league appearances for the Austrian champions.

West Ham are set to confirm the signing of Brentford star Said Benrahma, according to journalist Fabrizio Romano and widespread reports. Benrahma is reportedly going to cost the Hammers £30million.

- Bild reports Borussia Dortmund sensation Giovanni Reyna is set for a new lucrative contract in Germany. The American teenager has been linked with Liverpool and Madrid.

Gianluigi Donnarumma believes Milan have narrowed the gap to Inter ahead of the first derby of the season, a game that seems "less scary" these days thanks to the presence of Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

The Rossoneri have a miserable recent record against their city rivals, their last league win in the fixture coming back in January 2016.

However, after a strong finish to the 2019-20 season that resulted in a contract extension for coach Stefano Pioli, Milan have opened the new campaign with three successive wins.

Milan goalkeeper Donnarumma is confident his side can be more than a match for Antonio Conte's Inter, who finished second to champions Juventus last term, as they prepare to do battle on Saturday.

"The gap with Inter has narrowed. They have strengthened but our club has also done well in the transfer market," the Italy international told Sky Sport Italia.

"The coach has done a great job day by day, he is helping us a lot. We can't wait.

"They are a great team with a great coach, they have everything to do very well this year, they are strong and organised.

"We are a young team but we are aware of our potential and we can do well .We are not afraid. We are just focused on what we can do well. 

"I am optimistic and convinced that we will play a great match."

The return of Ibrahimovic - who has represented both teams in this fixture during his career - is a boost to Milan, with the Swede available again after overcoming coronavirus.

For Donnarumma, the talismanic striker is pivotal in aiding the development of Pioli's young squad, particularly as he knows what it takes to be successful in the Derby della Madonnina.

"We all wanted him to be part of the match and that is the case. With Ibra on the pitch, Inter are less scary," the 21-year-old keeper - who started for his country in the recent Nations League games with Poland and Italy - said.

"He is excited for the derby and will help us. Doing well in the derby would give us a lot of strength in terms of the championship, we are still at the beginning but it can give us strength.

"We are a young group that can grow a lot, but we are also showing in the present that we can do good things."

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