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Gamble backfires for Milan

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By ESPN Staff

El Shaarawy plays down City talk

Italy international forward Stephan El Shaarawy has dismissed reports that he could be on his way to Manchester City.

El Shaarawy, 20, said the interest from the former Premier League champions was “flattering" but stressed that he wanted to stay at AC Milan.

Speculation in the Italian media had suggested City, keen to bolster their squad after a trophyless season, were lining up a £30 million bid.

But El Shaarawy dampened that speculation, telling La Repubblica: "I don't think I will leave Milan.

"If City really want me it flatters me, but I want to stay here. I have always felt total confidence from everyone – the club, coach [Massimiliano] Allegri and team-mates.

"It's also thanks to them that I am in the Italian national team."

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