Interview: Zielinski hoping to add to tally against AC Milan

Another strong showing against the Rossoneri will only attract further interest in the Polish midfielder, who has been a revelation for the Tuscan side this season. Interview by Alessio D’Urso of La Gazzetta dello Sport

Foto LaPresse - Jennifer Lorenzini
13/12/2015 Empoli ( Italia)
Sport Calcio
Empoli - Carpi
Campionato di Calcio Serie A TIM 2015 2016 - Stadio "Carlo Castellani"
Nella foto: Piotr Zielinski

Photo LaPresse - Jennifer Lorenzini
13 December 2015 Empoli ( Italy)
Sport Soccer
Empoli - Carpi
Italian Football Championship League A TIM 2015 2016 - "Carlo Castellani" Stadium 
In the pic:  Piotr Zielinski

Having already netted against AC Milan when squaring off against them in the Primavera, Empoli‘s Piotr Zielinski is keen to repeat the feat and lead his side to victory when they meet on Saturday.

The 21-year-old has impressed this campaign, attracting interest from several of Serie A’s top clubs who are keen to land him from parent club Udinese.

While a return to the Zebrette come season’s end is certain, Zielinski insists his only focus is on performing well against Milan at the Stadio Carlo Castellani.

AC Chievo Verona v Empoli FC  - Serie A

How happy would you be to score against Milan?

“I’ve already scored against them in the Primavera via a freekick. It was against Filippo Inzaghi’s side, which included Bryan Cristante and Andrea Petagna, and we won 3-1 in 2013. I would like to score another, whichever way I can.”

You’ve played 1541 minutes out of a possible 1800, scoring a goal against Genoa to go along with four assists. 

“Everyone has shown faith in me, but I can still improve. I want to score five goals and create 10 assists. I have a lot riding on the next five months.”

Those five months could have a large say on your Serie A future and you being at the Euros with Poland.

“Yes it could have a big impact on my career.”

However you will be returning to Udinese.

“Yes, my immediate future will be with Udinese but I’m happy here with Empoli.”

However a big club could step in.

“I would like to join Juventus or Roma, however I was happy to hear of interest from Napoli.”

Bologna - Empoli

At Napoli you would meet up with Maurizio Sarri who reinvented you as a central midfielder.

“I must thank him. I was a trequartista, but I’ve learned a lot in terms of defence under Marco Giampaolo. Riccardo Saponara’s presence could have caused problems for me but it has proven to be a good thing. I cost Udinese €100,000 but who knows what my value will be after the Euros. That depends on me.”

You didn’t really play under Francesco Guidolin at Udinese.

“An injury during the summer resulted in some issues. However Guidolin helped me debut in Serie A and we won eight straight matches with him, though I did see the bench a lot.”

That worried Polish Football Association President Zbigniew Boniek.

“He didn’t know why I wasn’t playing. Now he is hoping I will play at the Euros.”

Who are some of your idols?

“I like Santi Cazorla, along with Mesut Ozil and Miralem Pjanic, but Zinedine Zidane is the best of them all.”

Who is the Zidane of current Empoli side?

“Massimo Maccarone, though I’ve forged a great friendship with Manuel Pucciarelli.”

What do you want to say to Empoli fans, who know they won’t be seeing you past the summer?

“That I’m not focused on my future right now. My only concern is earning three points against Milan.”



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