New signing Brahim Diaz said it is an ‘honour’ to be wearing the shirt of AC Milan and inherit the No.21 jersey, worn by Zlatan Ibrahimovic last season. The Spanish youngster has joined from Real Madrid on a full season loan and he has revealed that Zinedine Zidane was the one who advised him to join the Italian giants this summer.
“My first impressions of being a Milan player are very positive. You can really tell what kind of club AC Milan is,” the 21-year-old told the official Rossoneri website. “It’s a privilege to be playing for such a big club with an incredible history and it’s clear how much the fans love their team.” Diaz arrived on Friday at Milan and had his first training with the club on Saturday.
The young attacking midfielder is the second player to have joined Milan from Real Madrid after Theo Hernandez, who made the €20m transfer last year. “I haven’t had the chance to talk to Theo Hernandez yet, but I expect he’ll give me a warm welcome in our first training session together. He’s played for Real Madrid too, so he knows how it feels and now we’re both in Italy. I think that I’ll settle in pretty quickly, because it’s an incredible group of players.”
Despite being 19-years-old, Diaz has worked with some of the biggest coaches in the world. At Manchester City he worked with Manuel Pellegrini and Pep Guardiola and at Real Madrid he has worked with Zinedine Zidane. “My last coach at Madrid was Zidane and he was really kind to me. He spoke highly of Italy and Serie A, while he really likes the city of Milan too.”
Diaz will be wearing the No.21 jersey next season, the same jersey Ibrahimovic wore last season. “Wearing the shirt that Ibrahimovic wore last season is an honour and also a lot of pressure, because he is a Milan icon, but I’m happy with that and I’ll wear that shirt with passion. Above all, I want to play good football and entertain the Rossoneri fans. I think they’ll most appreciate my hard work, as I don’t believe talent is enough.”