Fagioli: “Seven months ago I was reborn – I’m also surprised by my call-up”


Juventus midfielder Nicolò Fagioli admitted that he was surprised to be called-up to the Italian national team. The young talent is part of coach Luciano Spalletti’s provisional 30-man squad ahead of the EUROs, and speaking in a press conference ahead of Italy’s friendly match with Turkey, Fagioli spoke about the journey he’s been on over the last season:

The Comeback

“I’ve always trained to return for Juventus’ last two matches and then be available for Spalletti’s national team. These seven months have been very long for me. Fortunately, the match against Bologna was moved to Monday, so I could play two games. It’s already a great emotion for me to be here among the 30 players; I hope to make it into the final 26.”

Pressing: Is This Your Preferred Style of Play?

“In modern football, it’s important to be versatile. We need to be able to perform well in different systems and roles.”

On Locatelli’s Exclusion

“I was also surprised by my call-up after being out for seven months. Locatelli is a friend, and I care about him. He must be disappointed not to be called up, and I told him he deserved to be here. I’m close to him during this time, and now I’m focused on making the final cut.”

Meeting Spalletti

“I met him on the pitch last year when he was coaching Napoli, and then during a Juventus training session he came to observe. In March, he called to ask how I was doing, and the night before the Coppa Italia final, we had a conversation. He told me he’d be watching my last two games.”

Learning About the Call-Up

“He didn’t give me any hints before the announcement. I found out when the squad was released, and I woke up to a thousand messages. It was wonderful. When it became real, it was a fantastic feeling. I’ll give my all to make the final 26, but even if I’m not selected, I’ll be cheering for Italy.”

Mental and Emotional State

“Mentally, I feel very good. I’ve worked hard for these seven months. I’m savoring every moment this week before the final squad is announced. As a Juventus fan, Del Piero is my idol, but I admire all those players who have written important pages in the national team’s history.”

What He Can Contribute

“I need to be myself and enjoy this experience to the fullest, giving everything I have.”

Facing Turkey

“It will be a tough match; Turkey is a very strong team. For Italy, a game should never be considered just a friendly.”

On Calhanoglu

“This year, he has proven to be among the top 3-5 players in the world. He was one of the few who spoke to me after my suspension. I’ve seen him several times; he’s a fantastic person.”

Italy U-17 in the Euro Final

“I wish them the best in winning the European Championship. Unfortunately, I lost in the final against the Netherlands in 2018.”

Becoming Italy’s Number 10

“It’s almost impossible to compare myself to them; they were absolute champions. Their technical skills were their greatest asset, and while I can contribute technically, I don’t claim to be on their level. They were idols and champions, and I still see them that way.”

Rebirth in Making the Final 26

“My rebirth happened seven months ago when I was suspended. I understood what happened and returned to normalcy. Making the final 26 would be a fantastic emotion and a huge satisfaction.”

Preferred Playing Position

“I’ve trained more in front of the defense, but I can also play in a two-man midfield or as a mezzala (central midfielder).”


Serie A obsessive.