At the age of 25, Manuel Locatelli has cemented himself as a staple in Max Allegri’s starting lineup.
The Euro 2020 winner has slowly but surely mastered his role as a defensive midfielder who shields the backline while helping in the buildup.
As a self-professed Juventus supporter, the Italian undoubtedly grew while idolizing some of the biggest legends in the club’s history.
In a recent interview, the former Milan and Sassuolo man identified Alessandro Del Piero, Pavel Nedved and Gianluigi Buffon as his role models.
Locatelli also named Andrea Pirlo as an idol, and also revealed a special bond with Gianluca Pessotto who serves as a director at the club.
“Del Piero is the symbol of Juventus, but also Pavel Nedved and Buffon,” he told the club’s Twitch channel as published by ilBianconero.
“Then in my role, there’s Pirlo. But Pessotto is also great, I’m getting to know him now and he’s teaching me all the tricks because he dresses in a suit, so I tease him when he doesn’t wear a tie. And let’s not forget about Chiellini and Bonucci.”
Despite his relatively young age, Locatelli also has to act as a guide for his less experienced teammates in the middle of the park, the likes of Fabio Miretti and Nicolò Fagioli.
“I often speak to the two of them because it is not easy to manage all things in a team like Juventus,” he revealed via ilBianconero
“The path they are following is the right one, we have a club, a team and a coach who protects them.
“I tell them to be carefree and not to lose the enthusiasm they have, then they’ll learn to manage many things. Experience gives you certain things but they’re already making giant strides.”