Sassuolo midfielder Manuel Locatelli doesn’t let the transfer rumours disturb his preparations with Italy ahead of Euro 2020. ‘It’s just talk. I will decide after the European Championship’.
Locatelli has attracted a host of admirers through his performances with the Neroverdi, but the midfielder doesn’t get distracted by the rumours of a big move this summer.
“It’s just talk. There’s such an important competition to play in, and I’m only focused on this,” Locatelli said at a press conference.
“I rely on what happens on the pitch, the real things, everything else is just gossip, it’s useless to talk about it.”
Locatelli, capped 10 times by the Azzurri, is preparing for his first major championship and could be in the starting line-up already against Turkey on Friday.
“Being here is emotional, it’s something that I dreamed of as a child,” Locatelli said. “I don’t know what formation the coach will choose, but we will try to be ready.
“There’s responsibility, we must enter the pitch for the Italians. It’s a responsibility that everyone would like to take on. It’s a pride.”
Euro 2020 was pushed by one season due to the coronavirus pandemic and the 23-year-old believes it helped him reach the squad.
“The fact that it was moved made it easier for me, it was a season where I matured. I changed as a player, as a person, I feel more mature and responsible.
“We have a precise identity on how to play,” he added. “We will be ready for the challenges and difficulties, if there are any.
“We are born like this: we have a common purpose that will stand out on these occasions.”
“Representing Italy is something to tell your children about.
“We used to gather and watch these competitions on a big screen. I know how nice it would be to play, we will give everything for Italy.”
Locatelli moved to Sassuolo from Milan feels he has proved his worth at the Mapei Stadium. Reports in Italian media now claim Juventus are working to secure a deal with the Neroverdi.
“It’s a revenge for myself,” he said. “When something disappointing happens, it’s important to relaunch yourself, to prove your worth.
“I don’t know if it’s a revenge for those who didn’t believe in me, I just think about the present.
“It’s normal that there are market rumours, but the maturity I’m talking about is the step where I don’t allow myself to be influenced.
“This is so important that it would be a waste to think about the market, even though I know that I will have to make some decisions after the European Championship.
“I talked to [Sassuolo CEO Giovanni] Carnevali, we are aware of the path to take.”