Pressure for Genoa to drop Portanova after rape trial begins

Genoa face pressure to drop midfielder Manolo Portanova, as the details are emerging from the trial he and three friends face for rape.

The 21-year-old is the son of former Genoa, Napoli and Bologna defender Daniele Portanova.

He came through the Lazio and Juventus youth academies before a €10m sale to Genoa in January 2021.

So far this season, Portanova has made 21 competitive appearances for Genoa, scoring one goal and providing one assist.

Coach Alexander Blessin has continued to use him even after Portanova was charged with taking part in a gang rape on March 28, but that position will be increasingly difficult once the trial begins in June.

Reports from the court case show Portanova and three friends claim it was consensual in May 2021, but the student went to A&E afterwards, where medics found bruises and wounds, not to mention the psychological treatment she has needed ever since.

“I learned from my father and from sport to have healthy respect for everyone, especially women. I am pained for the psychological damage the girl has suffered,” said Portanova in a statement.

The reconstruction from the charges show that her relationship with Portanova was consensual, but that she was then attacked by his three friends.