Although the midfielder is widely compared to Andrea Pirlo, the 20-year-old admits his football idol was Rino Gattuso ahead of Mulan’s upcoming meeting with Gattuso’s Napoli on Sunday.
“We talk every now and then, as Gattuso is like a father to me in the football world,” Tonali told Sky Sport Italia.
“He can give advice, both on how to be a man and a plyer. He always tells me off! That’s just what he’s like, let’s say he doesn’t give much praise and always expects a great deal from you. That’s how it should be.”
Achieving an away 1-1 Europa League draw with Manchester United on Thursday, that was the sixth game this season that the Rossoneri have got back on track with a goal in injury time.
“We never give in. We’re a great team and are proving what we can do.”
A special photograph in the locker room is Milan’s inspiration for the season.
“I often look at that picture of when we were all together in midfield in the rain and freezing cold, watching the penalty shoot-out against Rio Ave.
“That photograph really sparks something in us, it makes us realise where we came from and what we’ve been through to get where we are now.
“It makes us realise we earned all of it with sweat, hard work, determination and victories. That photograph reminds us we are here for a reason and we will certainly not stop now.”