He started his career being compared to Allesandro Del Piero, since then Sebastian Giovinco has stamped his authority on the Italian game, and Chelsea are ready to snatch him away from relegation threatened Parma...
Size has never been an issue with Sebastian Giovinco which is just as well because the striker stands a mere 5ft4 and a bit in his stocking feet.
Saddled with the tag of the next Alessandro Del Piero for too long and with too little to show for his efforts at Juventus, the 24-year-old is now very much his own man and can stand tall in the land of the Serie A giants in the much more laid-back surroundings of Parma.
In fact, the Atom Ant, as he has been nicknamed due to his impact on matches despite his diminutive stature, has become the big cheese at a club whose only real objective each season is to get to safety as soon as possible.
For a player who found the weight of expectation in his hometown of Turin a little too much to bare; coupled with the fact that Del Piro cast such a long shadow over anyone deemed his likely heir, having the freedom to torment opponents with his tricky runs and crisp finishing has had Juve reportedly thinking of welcoming him back now that dear, old Alex is on the way out.
His goal at AC Milan last night where of course the visitors lost, took his tally for the season to six and joint-top of the goalscoring charts – and he is now beginning to draw favourable comparisons with another pocket-sized wizard who turned out for Parma in the 90s before moving on to Chelsea – Gianfranco Zola of course.
Unlike previous Italy coaches who on the whole ignored Zola’s sublime talents when he left for England, current boss Cesare Prandelli does not care one iota which club a player is at as long as he is playing well.
Prandelli made the little sprit a mainstay of the Azzurri squad through their successful Euro 2012 qualifying campaign and unless there is some unforeseen fall from grace, jinky Giovinco will be on the team-sheet in Poland and Ukraine.
In the meantime, the questions have been raised on whether he should remain in what will no doubt be another relegation dogfight for Parma or attempt to ham it up in more competitive surroundings and there is no doubt that those nippy runs and glue-like control of the ball deserve a return to bigger stage.
Tiny he may be but he is as tough as teak and can ride a challenge and has never been one to shirk out of a loose ball even if he found to his cost...
He first came to prominence in the Juventus youth team that lifted the title in 2006 against an Inter side that included a certain Mario Balotelli. Back then Giovinco was on already at an age where he was on the cusp of first-team football but still down the pecking order at Juve so as tradition dictates in Italy he was sent out on loan to a finishing school to toughen him up.
It was at Empoli that Giovinco produced some memorable performances – one of which saw him twist the blood of the muscle-bound Douglas Maicon so much that it had the Brazilian calling for the metaphoric taxi much has he was subsequently to do when he ran up against Gareth Bale.
Tiny he may be but he is as tough as teak and can ride a challenge and has never been one to shirk out of a loose ball even if he found to his cost when he ran into Massimo Ambrosini that being that second too quick for a plodder will leave you in need of a few stitches in your ankle.
However, there is still a feeling that for all his inventiveness and creativity maybe the little fellow will never grow into a fully-formed star in his homeland much as Antonio Cassano’s early promise failed to morph into anything more than a couple of tricks here and there until Milan took him under their wing at the ripe old age of 28.
Giovinco, for his part, is entering what are considered the most productive years for a player through their mid-20s and the hard decision has to be made – should he stay or should he go?
If Chelsea follow up their reported inquires then it may be in the best interests of the dazzling dribbler and the national side on the whole if he makes the great leap forward - and just maybe he will emulate another little Italian magician at Stamford Bridge.
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