While he’s following in the footsteps of his legendary grandfather and father, Daniel Maldini is also making a name for himself in the AC Milan shirt.
The 19-year-old Maldini scored in Serie A at the weekend, helping AC Milan to a 2-1 away win over Spezia. Maldini’s goal came in his first start for AC Milan.
The attacker unfroze the scoreboard after only three minutes in the second half when he headed Pierre Kalulu’s cross past the Spezia goalkeeper Jeroen Zoet. It was no easy affair for Milan, as the hosts equalized in the 80th minute. Daniele Verde’s shot was deflected into the Milan net by midfielder Sandro Tonali.
Just moments after being sent in to replace Kessie in the 82nd minute, Brahim Diaz got Milan back in front (’86) following a great play from Alexis Saelemaekers. Thanks to the three points in Spezia, AC Milan remain second in the Serie A standings, on 16 points (from six games). They are two points behind leaders Napoli.
The Maldini legacy goes on
Maldini scored his first Serie A goal 13-and-a-half years after his dad, Paolo, last netted for the Rossoneri. Paolo Maldini, now the club’s technical director, made more than 900 appearances in the iconic AC Milan shirt. Daniel Maldini’s goal also celebrated 60 years since his grandfather, Cesare, last scored for Milan against Catania in 1961.
A historic goal and a battling display: well done Daniel 💪
— AC Milan (@acmilan) September 25, 2021
Paolo Maldini was in the stands in Spezia and celebrated his son’s goal, jumping off his seat with his fists in the air.
Paolo Maldini's reaction to his son, Daniel, scoring on his first start for AC Milan is EVERYTHING. ❤️ pic.twitter.com/vZourSAW7i
— CBS Sports Golazo ⚽️ (@CBSSportsGolazo) September 25, 2021
“My dad advises me all the time. He tells me to be calm, to do what I usually do and give everything,” Maldini revealed to Milan TV at the game’s conclusion. “I can’t describe what I’m feeling. I have to understand what happened. Luckily, we won, the game was really difficult,” the teenager added.
4/1/87 – 25/9/21 🗓️
Paolo – Daniel ⚽
— AC Milan (@acmilan) September 26, 2021
Cesare Maldini, the first Milan legend in the family, helped the team to their first European Cup. Paolo built on that and played 902 times in the AC Milan shirt, a club record. Paolo won seven Serie A titles and five Champions League trophies during his time as a player at San Siro.
“The coach told me yesterday that I was going to play, but I was relaxed. It is difficult to find spaces on the pitch, to move around and create chances. But in the second half a bit more space opened up,” Daniel Maldini explained.
The forward has the lowest wage in AC Milan’s first team, earning just $350k per season after tax.