Gatti makes Italy debut: from bricklayer to man-marking England stars

by | Jun 11, 2022 22:35

New Juventus signing Federico Gatti shone in his Italy debut against England and what makes his performance even more impressive is the fact that he was working as a bricklayer only five years ago.

The 23-year-old signed with Juventus in the January transfer window but has ended the season on loan at Frosinone. He will move to Turin for the pre-season training retreat when Max Allegri will decide whether to include him in the senior team permanently.

The first signs seem promising given that the 23-year-old centre-back was one of the standout performers England vs. Italy tonight, on his senior debut with the Azzurri.

Next Romero or De Ligt? Who is new Juve defender Gatti and what his signing means

According to Opta, Gatti was involved in 11 duels, more than any other Italy player at the Molineux Stadium. He was also the Azzurri player with the most blocks (three), interceptions (two) and the most fouled Italy man.

Gatti was born in Rivoli, just a few kilometres away from Turin, on June 24, 1998. Part of his family, including his grandpa, supports Torino  and the Granata came close to signing him in the winter transfer window.

Despite the competition between Juve and Toro, Gatti revealed in February that his grandpa cried from happiness when he found out that the defender had signed with the Old Lady. It’s understandable, given that Gatti’s life was very different only five years ago.

He wasn’t only playing in a different role (midfielder), but he also did it in Italy’s fifth division Eccellenza. At that time, Gatti was working as a bricklayer to make a living.

He has gone through every division in Italian football and played his first Serie B campaign in 2021-22. His performances in the first part of the season convinced Juventus to invest circa €9m to secure his services from Frosinone and the next step for him will be to prove that he is worthy of the Bianconeri.

England didn’t create many troubles for the Azzurri tonight, neither with Tammy Abraham nor Harry Kane, mostly thanks to his fine defensive display. Perhaps, Raheem Sterling had the best chance in the match but wasted it in the second half.

Gatti ‘didn’t sleep much’ ahead of Italy debut against England

Gatti always looked composed and put in a solid defensive performance, looking absolutely enthusiastic when returning to the tunnel after the final whistle.

“I had an inkling that I would play, so I didn’t sleep much the last few days! I hope for many more of these days,” he told RAI Sport after the match.

“I was playing in Serie B this season, so being there with players who are in the Champions League, it was a bit nerve-wracking, but I shook it off and played the way I do even in the lower divisions. I don’t look anyone in the face, I just go for it.”

2 Comments

  1. Qwerty1930

    Looked really, really solid last night. A lot of potential here.

    Let’s hope Allegri doesn’t screw up and gives him a proper chance at Juventus.

  2. Papa_frezz

    He’s about 8 years too young for Allegri to even consider him a starter. They’ll sell him to Spurs where he’ll thrive.

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