Few players know AS Roma as well as Lorenzo Pellegrini. The midfielder was spotted early by the club’s scouts and joined the youth team when he was barely 10, going on to represent the Giallorossi at every youth level possible. Perhaps it was always only a matter of time before he became a key first team player.
Of course, before that could happen there was the two-year graduate program – where Pellegrini gained valuable experience and learned the important lessons needed to make it at the highest level. That internship came with Sassuolo, aided by the teaching of Eusebio Di Francesco and his staff. Pellegrini arrived with the Serie A side a prospect with a strong record at youth level and, after more than 50 appearances across two seasons (including a taste of European action in the Europa League), left a more complete midfielder – would leave as a full Italy international.
In the summer of 2017 Di Francesco – a title-winner with Roma in 2001 – returned to his old club as manager, and one of his first signings saw his old charge return too. Pellegrini may have made his full debut for his beloved club against Cesena in 2015 (10 years after joining as a child) but this is the real start of his senior Roma career.
Pellegrini made his national team debut alongside his idol, Daniel De Rossi, and will learn plenty now he is even closer to the famous No. 16. But Lorenzo is a different type of midfielder to De Rossi, a more attack-minded central midfielder: the classic No. 8 (even if he will actually wear No. 7) who likes to push forward and create danger in the final third.
Pellegrini can move the ball around the pitch with precision, while his physical qualities help his team break between the lines as they build attacks. He has an eye for goal, too – scoring 11 times for Sassuolo in his spell there.
That is no mean feat for a young player. Now back where he belongs, his talent can surely only flourish further.Show More Show Less