For the first time in almost 500 days, Federico Chiesa scored a goal in a European competition. The winger returned from a lengthy layoff last October, but is still enduring occasional physical problems.
Nevertheless, the 25-year-old remains more determined than ever. Despite sustaining a slight knock during the first leg against Freiburg, he managed to shake it off and put himself at the manager’s disposal for the return fixture.
The former Fiorentina man came off the bench to place the final nail in Freiburg’s coffin, scoring in added-time to make it 2-0 on the night, and 3-0 on aggregate.
After securing qualification to the Europa League quarter-finals, he explains how hitting the woodwork on his first attempt prompted his goal. He also revealed the reason behind his apology gestures toward the away supporters during the goal celebration.
“I decided to flick it after my failed first attempt. I said to myself that this time I’ll place it in the right spot and see if it hits the net,” said the Euro 2020 winner in his post-match interview with Sky via ilBianconero.
“Yes, I apologized to the fans because I want to be there, I want to lend a hand to the team. But unfortunately I haven’t been able to do so in the last two years.
“Sadly, I’m not at my best, I had a good start in January, but then I sustained two other problems.
“I’m sorry, that’s the way it is at the moment. I work hard to be there, the apologies were heartfelt.”
“The discomfort is still there, I’m trying to work more effectively to be there more continuously, then the coach will decide”.