AC Milan youngster M’Baye Niang is hoping to follow in the goal-scoring footsteps of team-mate Stephan El Shaarawy next term.
The 18-year-old attacker managed just one goal last season for the Serie A side, in the Italian Cup against Reggina, and has been criticised in some quarters for his finishing.
And Niang said he is hopeful of adding to his tally next term, and is looking to emulate his prolific team-mate El Shaarawy, who scored 16 Serie A goals last season – equal third on the league’s scoring charts.
“I hope I’ll follow Stephan El Shaarawy’s example next season with great performances for Milan and a lot of goals,” the Frenchman said.
“Last season I had the chance to grow, I played a lot since my arrival in Milan and I hope I can continue playing a lot and score a lot too.
“I had the feeling my performances had dropped at the end of the season, maybe due to a bit of tiredness. I’m working and preparing to play a whole season.”
Niang said he is constantly learning at San Siro, and wants to add more physicality to his game – in the mould of AC Milan striker Mario Balotelli.
“I learnt a lot last season thanks to my team-mates who are great players and thanks to the coach,” he said.
“Balotelli is a great champion. It’s a great pleasure for me to play with him and I have to work a lot to become stronger than him.”
And Niang said Milan will be going all out to end Juventus’ recent dominance of Italian football, with the men from Turin bidding for a third successive Serie A title.
“Juventus is a great team, but we have good qualities too and we can be competitive,” he said.
“Let’s hope the Scudetto will be ours this season.”