With the news dropping that AC Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma won't sign a contract extension, one of the world's brightest young goalkeeping talents is apparently up for a transfer. It's an interesting market for Donnarumma, though. He's very very promising, there's no denying that, but he's still 18 years old. That works both to his advantage and his detriment, as he's highly skilled but there's lingering doubt about whether he's 100 percent ready to lead a world-class club.
Here are 6 possible landing spots for Donnarumma — some definitely most plausible than others — ranked by likelihood.
A longshot at best, this move would require David de Gea forcing a move out of Old Trafford (hello, Real Madrid?). If De Gea cuts and runs, United could do worse than signing Donnarumma. It'd be risky, especially trusting him to be able to adjust to the Premier League and Champions League for the first time ever. Still, if United need a backstop, Gigio could be a fit.
Paris St. Germain
When there's big money to be spent, Paris St. Germain are always in the mix. The Parisian club are in the market for a keeper according to displaced No. 1 Alphonse Areola, so why not pony up for Donnarumma? Kevin Trapp hasn't fully entrenched himself in PSG's plans after two seasons, so perhaps they pull the rip cord and ride with the young Italian.
Liverpool have the makings of a strong team, but last season was marred by inconsistent goalkeeping play. Loris Karius only made 16 appearances and Jurgen Klopp's ambivalence toward Simon Mignolet is no state secret. The question here would be whether or not Liverpool would pony up the requisite cash to land the 18-year-old Donnarumma. AC Milan are estimated to be looking for around £40 million for the keeper, which is nothing to sneeze at.
Copyright The Associated Press. All rights reserved.AP
The Rossoneri were said to have offered a lucrative 5-year deal paying €5 million per year, but Donnarumma didn't bite. Maybe it's a negotiating tactic from Donnarumma and super-agent Mino Raiola, though. If AC Milan sweeten the deal even more, maybe Donnarumma will have a change of heart and all will be forgotten. Or, perhaps Milan hang onto him and force him to rot on the bench until his contract runs out. This would be the spiteful play from AC Milan, sending a message that a player can't dictate transfer terms, but it's not unthinkable.
This content is subject to copyright.AFP/Getty Images
This would be the natural progression, no? Gianluigi replacing Gianluigi, as is predestined in the Italian national team? It'd be a strong fit, as well, assuming the elder Gigi doesn't mind seeing a teenager taking his No. 1 place for both club and country. As Buffon still looks like he has the goods to play at least another season, Donnarumma wouldn't be thrust directly into a starting role. He could play in cup competitions as he got used to the Juve way of life before eventually taking over for Buffon in a season or so. Would he be OK with that setup after being the go-to guy, though?
Of course, Real Madrid. If there's a goalkeeping talent out there, the Spanish giants are linked. They've recently affirmed that they're pleased with incumbent (and two-time Champions League winner) Keylor Navas, but the Costa Rican is 30 years old. That's not old by any means, especially for a goalkeeper, and yet Real Madrid still keep being associated to other netminders. Similar to a Juventus move, Donnarumma wouldn't have to step right in if Real kept Navas around. He could learn the ropes before being the main man. Again, though, whether that's what he envisions for himself or not could be an issue.