As goal celebrations go, the run and fist-pump is an Italian standard trademarked by Marco Tardelli in 1982. But there was something visceral about Manuel Locatelli’s reaction to hammering in an equalizer to get Milan to 3-3 from 3-1 down at home to bogey side Sassuolo. The 18-year-old midfielder was making only the sixth appearance of his career, and his goal helped Milan achieve an improbably comeback, as it won 4-3 with Gabriel Palletta heading home a winner soon after Locatelli's strike.
No wonder Locatelli broke down in tears during the post-match interview.
“This [goal] was for my family and everyone that believed in me," he told Mediaset. "This is a moment every child waits for and I still can't believe it. When I heard the noise from the crowd. I couldn't believe it. I just started running and it was all true.”
Milan announced after the game that Locatelli had signed a new deal running until 2020. With Gianluigi Donnarumma (17), Davide Calabria (19) and Suso (22) all getting game time under coach Vincenzo Montella, the future is looking a little brighter in Milan. The result pushes the Rossoneri into a tie for third place in Serie A, and it may join Lazio, Roma and Chievo in pushing for a Champions League place this season.