Giorgio Chiellini played in the first official game at the new Wembley Stadium back in 2007. He was there, remember, when England’s Under-21s drew 3-3 with their Italian counterparts. But he didn’t have the best game, arguably at fault for the hosts’ second goal. The Juventus defender is now back to his best and set to face England on Saturday.
But he returned to the pitch after being struck by a stray boot and had blood streaming down his face. It remains one of the defining images of his career, as there was never any chance of him going off.
Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini is one of the most intelligent players in the game, every sense. He was a different player back then, a powerful left-back who liked to get forward. But he has become a symbol of Juventus after his move from Sampdoria to Juventus. The former Italy international had supported AC Milan when he was a kid, and idolised Paolo Maldini.
Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini has been at the club for years. The Italy international is a graduate in economics and commerce, before securing a master’s in business administration in 2017. He was named as one of Juventus’ three most influential players by former boss Fabio Capello.
Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini has been sidelined by injury for the past year. Italy boss Roberto Mancini didn’t even want to consider leaving him out of his Euro 2020 squad. The -year-old’s Juventus team-mate Alvaro Morata said going up against him was
“LIKE BEING PUT IN A CAGE WITH A GORILLA AND YOU HAVE TO STEAL HIS FOOD”.
Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini says he doesn’t need to be evaluated by the club when he returns from injury.
Giorgio Chiellini’s body may be starting to betray him but he’s still the master of mind games. The Italy defender has compared himself to Lionel Messi and mischievously labelled Spain skipper Jordi Alba “a liar” He proved that by containing Romelu Lukaku in the epic quarter-final win over Belgium. On that night in Munich, he vindicated Roberto Mancini’s decision to recall him even though Francesco Acerbi had deputised wonderfully well for him.
“YOU DON’T FEEL ANYTHING,”
“AND ONLY THINK ABOUT PLAYING.”
That fearless focus is why he’s still playing at this level a month shy of his 37th birthday. It’s why he’s back at Wembley. And it’s why he will be willing to spill blood again.
Italy’s greatest warrior is going to relish every second of this final battle.