When a player comes through the academy of a big club and professes to be a lifelong fan, supporters expect undying loyalty. And when 16-year-old Gianluigi Donnarumma started to get games in goals for the Rossoneri, Milanisti thought they had found their Gianluigi Buffon. A young Italian who was in love with the club, playing for one of the most prestigious shirts in world football.
Milan, however, spent the entire duration of the Italians career with the club outside of the UEFA Champions League. Despite finally qualifying for the 2021-22 season, the prodigious keeper left for a free transfer to Paris Saint-Germain.
Through his relationship with firebrand agent Mino Raiola, the player endured a frosty relationship with the Milan support. The fact he then left on a free has left him as public enemy #1 for most Milan supporters. When taking part in the UEFA Nations League semi-final against Spain, the match was held at San Siro. Milan fans were present, and a massive banner was unfurled to remind the player he would never be welcome in Milano again.
Now, Donnarumma’s agent, Raiola, has come out firing to defend his client. Speaking to Il Corrriere dello Sport, the agent noted: “I am disgusted about the boos to Donnarumma and I ask myself why Milan didn’t intervene in some way after that banner,”
While beloved by much of the rest of the nation for his role in Italy winning the 2021 UEFA European Championships, Milan fans have turned their backs on the player. Dubbing him Dollarumma, it is unlikely the Italian ever wins back the support of the club whom he grew up loving and supporting.
Raiola, though, has been quick to make his feeling clear to the media about the conduct of the fans to his client.
What did Mino Raiola say about Gianluigi Donnarumma being booed?
Raiola, who has built up a frosty relationship with Milan due to his desire to always get what his client wants, was quick to get the boot in to the club, saying: “Do you want to talk about threats?
“Has he killed somebody? I don’t think so. The truth is that Milan didn’t have the strength to keep him, but it doesn’t make the difference. Ask, anybody, ask a dad. What would he suggest to his son? Join PSG or stay at Milan?”
The agent was described as “furious” at the reception his player got, and was keen to make clear that he blames Milan for not doing enough to protect the player, adding: “What happened at the stadium is sad, strange and shameful,
“It’s strange that Milan fans only target Donnarumma, only because he made a free choice. It’s also strange and disappointing that Milan didn’t distance themselves from this unacceptable behaviour.
“Italy looked bad in front of the whole world, I really appreciate Sergio Busquets’ gesture, he understood the situation and what Gigio was going through.”
For now, then, it looks like what is a messy situation for a boyhood Milan fan is only going to get messier.