Reported Liverpool target Nicolo Zaniolo “feels like a lion in a cage” on the sidelines at Roma, according to his father.
According to Italian publications Il Tempo, Il Messaggero and the Corriere dello Sport (via Football Italia) Zaniolo is likely to be on the list of players to be sold if they fail to make the Champions League this season and Liverpool have been touted as suitors.
The 20-year-old, who has also been linked with Spurs and Man Utd, moved to Roma from Inter Milan’s youth side in the summer of 2018, but such has been his development that he is now rated as Roma’s most valuable player.
The Italy international, who made his debut for his country in March, suffered a serious knee injury earlier this season and is still recovering, but his father Igor says he is raring to return to actrion.
“He feels like a lion in a cage. The other day, they gave the team a day off and Nicolò had two sessions at home,” Igor told La Gazzetta dello Sport.
“Everyone at Trigoria knows that they have to stop him and I tell him too, because someone with his musculature, so powerful, need take gradual steps.
“Now, he’s working on his upper body. This will allow him to have greater balance when he runs.”
But the surgeon who operated on Zaniolo, Dr. Mariani, has claimed that Zaniolo will not rush his return
“He perfectly respects the recovery times that we had foreseen for him in the tables,” Dr. Mariani said. “He is a natural talent, so I’m not surprised that he has already touched the ball.
“When they sit in front of me and listen to the response of the tests, they all have two types of reaction.
“They either cry for themselves or immediately ask you when they can come back to play. Nicolò is part of the second group.”