Salvatore Sirigu said he wants to ‘prove to myself that I’m a good goalkeeper’ after joining Genoa on a free transfer this summer.
The former Torino man moved to the Marassi as a free agent after he was released by the Granata and the veteran, fresh from helping the Azzurri pick up the European Championship, looks forward to the new season with the Grifone.
“I want to start from here and prove to myself that I’m a good goalkeeper,” Sirigu said at a press conference attended by Football Italia.
“Every challenge is fascinating. Coming here and being able to fight with this shirt gives me great motivation to face the year in the best of ways.
“In a year and a half there will be the World Cup but there are many things to do between now and then. I want to live this experience in a free way and even with a smile on my face.”
Sirigu hopes to have a ‘good season’ with the Rossoblu and admitted it was difficult to play without fans.
“Until now, I have met pragmatic people. It’s something I appreciate because last year was a strange championship for everyone,” he said.
“I think this championship has not normalised; I think we have to start humbler than normal because we saw that playing without fans was difficult.
“We have to think about hitting the minimum target and then think about having a good season.”
Sirigu said he has become ‘a happier person’ since the joy of winning the Euros with Italy this summer.
“I’m a happier person. Before, I was a bit moodier. I lived my live – in some cases – very seriously,” he continued.
“The victory at the European Championship gave me great joy, after the difficulties the country has experienced. Being able to go home to Italy and see the joy we have given to people has made me a happy person.”
He had a controversial end to his stay at Torino but explained it was ‘an honour’ to play for the club and claimed he ‘can only be satisfied’ by his time with the Granata.
“I think each story is a story in itself,” he continued. “Each team is a different adventure. It’s undeniable for me that Torino are an important team where I left my heart.
“I don’t deny it and it was an honour to wear that shirt. Tomorrow, when my career is over, I will look back and, looking at where I played, I can only be satisfied.”
Sirigu was asked if he had given Andrea Belotti any advice regarding the Italy striker’s future at Torino but stressed it’s up to the Granata captain to ‘make the choice’.
“I have talked to Gallo several times and I certainly can’t give advice on staying or leaving,” Sirigu said. “He has great love for Torino, he has to do what he feels like.
“He’s appreciated by everyone, everyone knows his goodness. He has to do what makes him happiest. Then, I honestly didn’t speak of his situation.
“When we were at the European Championship, we talked about the present, then afterwards we talked to each other in various chats but only to greet each other, celebrate and goliardic things.
“I don’t know what’s going through his head.”