Being a Maldini is very much a blessing and a curse when it comes to playing for AC Milan.
Thanks to the exploits of former player and manager Cesare Maldini and, to an even greater extent, the eternal icon Paolo Maldini, being part of the family is likely to open a few doors for you at the San Siro.
But then once you’ve got your foot in the door, you’ve then got to live up to your family name. Between them, Cesare and Paolo played a combined 37 seasons at Milan, totalling 1,314 appearances and 31 trophies.
Paolo’s eldest son, Christian, has already passed through Milan’s youth system as a defender but failed to make the grade and has instead carved out a career in Italy’s lower leagues.
It is now over to the youngest, Daniel, to ensure the Maldini’s formidable legacy at the San Siro continues into a third generation. No pressure, son.
Daniel, still just 18, has already progressed further than Christian, with two Serie A appearances to his name.
Despite initially playing as a defender, the Italy youth international’s evolution into an attacking midfielder may turn out to be the best thing that could have happened to him, ending any expectation of replicating the impossibly high standards of his father and grandfather when it comes to elegant, classy defending.
While Paolo was partial to the odd wondergoal himself, Daniel is developing into the very kind of player his father devoted an entire career to stopping.
And after watching Daniel score his first senior goal for the Rossoneri in Saturday’s 4-1 friendly victory over Serie B outfit Monza, Paolo was the last player on our minds – we were too busy thinking about Thierry Henry.
🔥 Daniel Maldini that is GORGEOUS.
— SempreMilan (@SempreMilanCom) September 5, 2020