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Genoa assistant boss reduced to tears on sideline as 16-year-old son nets Serie A brace

Marco Pellegri watched his son break the Serie A record with a brace against Lazio.

BORN IN 2001, Genoa striker Pietro Pellegri was already a record-breaker coming into the new season.

Last December, he became the joint-youngest player ever to figure in Serie A, coming on as a substitute for his boyhood club while still very much in boyhood, aged 15 years and 280 days.

Six months later he became the Italian top division’s youngest ever scorer, almost spoiling Francesco Totti’s retirement party with a goal in Genoa’s 3-2 defeat at Roma.

Opportunities were always likely to be forthcoming for the 16-year-old this season; Genoa replaced Giovanni Simeone with Gianluca Lapadula to lead their attack, but still lacked depth up top.

Their new arrival suffered an injury in their third league fixture, and so for their home game with Lazio last night, manager Ivan Juric deployed Tottenham old boy Adel Taraabt as a false nine. It went disastrously, and teenage sensation Pellegri was summoned from the bench after just over half an hour.

50 minutes later, the six-foot-three-and-counting striker had become the youngest player in Serie A history to have netted two goals in one game, and the youngest in Europe’s top five leagues to have done so this century.

It was all too much for his father, Genoa’s assistant manager Marco Pellegri, himself a lifelong fan of the Grifone.

The elder Pellegri once joked to reporters: “The day [my son] Pietro steps out at Marassi wearing a Genoa shirt I can go ahead and die, because it will mean that I have seen everything.”

He’s seen even more now, albeit in what transpired to be a 3-2 defeat.

Often compared to Zlatan Ibrahimovic due to his physical attributes and technical prowess, Pellegri was reportedly the subject of a bid from Manchester United in 2015, part of which included a well-paid job in England for his father.

Those advances were rejected in order for both men to fulfil their dream.

Striker Pellegri remains linked to Juventus, Inter and AC Milan, with the latter favoured to land his signing in January.

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