AC Milan fans have a lot to be happy about these days, especially with regard to one thing: their future. Today, the team announced the extension of Stephan El Shaarawy’s contract. The youngster signed a deal that will keep him in Milan until the summer of 2018. This is great news for the Rossoneri since El Shaarawy has been on a tear lately. The Egyptian born star, nicknamed “The Pharaoh”, has scored 16 goals in the Serie A, leading AC Milan to fourth place after an uneven start (4W – 3T – 6L) for the team.
Along with El Shaarawy, AC Milan will also have Mario Balotelli until the summer of 2018. The Italian striker arrived from Manchester City in a 19 million pound move in January. El Shaarawy and Balotelli had played with each other before the move, having played together for the Italian national team. Both strikers are now the future for both AC Milan and the Italian national team, which fans of both will surely be ecstatic about.
El Shaarawy spoke to AC Milan’s channel about his partnership with Balotelli and other issues:
We have to improve certain aspects of our game but I do not think that we are incompatible because I set up Mario for a goal against Udinese and we have been combining well in training.
Balotelli and El Shaarawy will certainly be very helpful for AC Milan in the future. However, they are not the only two rising stars on the team. Mattia De Sciglio is another player who has been making a name for himself at San Siro. De Sciglio, while only 20 years old, has already earned his spot as AC Milan’s starting left back. The young Italian wears number two, a number he said is very special to him:
Next season I will be wearing a very important shirt (number 2 shirt) that in the past was worn by some great players like Tassotti and Cafù. I hope I live up to their standards.
Across the pitch from De Sciglio plays Ignazio Abate. Abate, 26, is the Rossoneri’s starting right back, and another AC Milan player who also wears the colors of the national team. Abate has been playing for AC Milan since 2009, having earned the starting right back position during Leonardo’s tenure with the Rossoneri.
AC Milan has been quietly adding quality players to their squad. This has resulted in recent league success and a big win against Barcelona.
The Rossoneri also have a secret weapon who they plan to use in the near future. Hachim Mastour, just 15 years old, has been making headlines lately in Milan. There were rumors flying around that AC Milan were pushing Serie A to allow the player to make his debut, after the youngster caught international attention when he made his U-15 debut for Italy.
AC Milan will certainly remain very relevant in a couple of years if they manage to hold on to the young players they have today, as expectations will rise slowly for the Italian giants. A return to elite European status and the chance to add to their 5 European titles will be a possibility for this team moving forward, and one thing is for certain: they will be a fun team to watch.