Pafundi: ‘Azzurri debut a childhood dream’

Breakout talent Simone Pafundi reflected on the emotions he felt following his Italy debut in the friendly against Albania. 

The 16-year-old midfielder was called up by Roberto Mancini for the Azzurri’s two friendlies against Albania and Austria, gifting the unproven teenager a huge chance to show his abilities on the main stage. Pafundi made his debut for the national team in the dying minutes of the friendly win over Albania on Wednesday, becoming the youngest debutant for Italy in over a century.

Speaking to the Azzurri’s media department, Pafundi first discussed how his Italy debut was a dream come true.

“The emotion of the debut was so strong because it’s a dream I’ve had since I was a child.”

He revealed that Mancini didn’t give him any particular instructions before he entered the pitch.

“He didn’t tell me anything, I think to make me play calmly.”

The 16-year-old commented on the help given by the Azzurri’s youth teams.

“A lot because it was a stepping stone. I thank all the U17 staff because it is also thanks to them that I am here.”

Finally, Pafundi remembered how it felt to walk into the senior team’s dressing room for the first time.

“The first day was a bit strange, then everything went smoothly. The guys were very nice to me straight away.”

The 16-year-old Pafundi has now attracted the attention of clubs across Europe and recent reports suggest that Napoli have opened talks with Udinese to explore a move. 

One Comment on “Pafundi: ‘Azzurri debut a childhood dream’”

  1. Wait. A ”childhood dream” ? born in 2006 does pretty much make you a child : P it’s more like a childhood reality.

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