Welcome to our Danilo D’Ambrosio 2020/21 report card. As part of our post-season coverage, we’ll be dishing out grades and analyzing every Inter player’s season.
Few players have as strong a signature as Danilo D’Ambrosio and his crafty runs to the back-post on crosses. What makes D’Ambrosio’s prowess in the air particularly memorable is his impeccable timing. Of the seven headed goals he’s scored in his Inter career, five have been game-winners. Despite seeing his playing time decrease in recent years, D’Ambrosio has still managed to end up on the scoresheet in vital moments all while being a reliable depth option off the bench.
Position: Center-back/Right wing-back
Games Played: 24 (10 starts, 1,008 minutes)
What went right this season?
Even at 32 years of age, D’Ambrosio was still a reliable contributor for the Nerazzurri. Inter went 6W-2T-2L in the games he started and while the Italian isn’t at his top form anymore, he’s still able to hold his own against mid-table opposition. D’Ambrosio’s impact waned in the second half of the season but he still gave Antonio Conte a more defensive option to close out games when needed.
The main highlight of D’Ambrosio’s season was of course his late-game headers. He gave Inter three points against Fiorentina and Cagliari with goals in the 89th and 84th minute respectively. Most impressive was his winner over La Viola, which capped off a miraculous comeback from 3-2 down after eighty minutes to win 4-3 in the season opener. A looping cross found its way over Dusan Vlahovic’s head and was nodded in from point-blank range by D’Ambrosio.
87' - Lukaku ties it up— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) September 26, 2020
89' - D'Ambrosio gives Inter the lead
What a match! pic.twitter.com/QEDwSu3m1d
What does he need to improve on?
With only nine appearances after January, D’Ambrosio’s fitness levels became a concern. He missed six games with injury and was an unused substitute 16 times. The 32-year-old also struggled against pacier opponents. His defending against Rafael Leao in the October Derby Della Madonnina was particularly suspect.
What role will he play in 2021/22?
D’Ambrosio’s contract expires at the end of June but recent reports point towards an extension. Despite interest from Milan and Fiorentina, he looks set to stay in a Nerazzurri kit for at least one more season. There aren’t any better depth options at a realistic price than D’Ambrosio so a renewal makes perfect sense for all parties involved.