Giacomo Bonaventura dedicated his decisive goal in AC Milan’s 1-0 Serie A win over Pescara to those affected by the latest earthquake to hit central Italy.
The town of Norcia was closest to the epicentre of the 6.6-magnitude quake on Sunday – the strongest to hit Italy since 1980 – which has destroyed numerous buildings, with reports suggesting around 20 people suffered injuries.
There are thought to be no fatalities after the earthquake, which struck close to Amatrice – the town worst affected by a 6.2 tremor in August that left 297 dead, while the regions of Marche and Umbria were subjected to strong seismic activity earlier this week.
Bonaventura, who was born in the San Severino Marche municipality, headed towards a pitchside television camera and offered the message “Forza Italia” after whipping a second-half free-kick under the Pescara wall.
After the match, the 27-year-old Italy international confirmed the intention of his gesture to mixed-zone reporters and insisted Milan would try to help the clear-up operation.
“I dedicate this goal to the people who are suffering because of the earthquake,” Bonaventura said.
“I know what it is because I am from those parts.
“I send a big hug and I know that we will do something concrete as a team to help them.”
On a victory that lifted Vincenzo Montella’s men up to third in Serie A, Bonaventura added: “I’m happy for the victory. We suffered but the important thing was to win.
“Montella always asks me to do some kind of work and I’ll put in the maximum effort. I’m happy, let’s enjoy this third place.”