AC Milan striker Alexandre Pato has spoken of his admiration for former coach Carlo Ancelotti, and suggested he'd be open to playing for the Chelsea manager again one day. However, he insisted he is commited to the Serie A side.
Pato has become hot property since bursting onto the European scene with AC Milan in January 2008, and was the architect of the Rossoneri's surprise 3-2 win over Real Madrid at the Bernabeu on Wednesday night, scoring two goals.
Pato was linked with a move to Stamford Bridge over the summer, and the Ancelotti factor is sure to keep the rumour mill going strong. The Brazilian striker has huge respect for Ancelotti following their time together at the San Siro.
Chelsea, of course, are currently the subject of a FIFA transfer ban and will be unable to register any players until January 2011. But their appeal against that ruling could open the door for them to sign players in January while the Court of Arbitration for Sport reaches its decision.
In an interview with ESPN Soccernet, Pato of his current situation: "All I can do is repeat that that I'm 150% committed to Milan for as far as I can see into the future. I have a contract here until 2012 and intend to honour it. I have a deep affection for this club as they brought me to Europe and had faith in me. They made the big step of investing in me and this counts for a lot. I would love to have the career of a Paolo Maldini, who was the symbol of Milan for his entire career, but I'm also aware that life is unpredictable.
''I'm fascinated by football in England and Spain. I love the colour and enthusiasm for the game in those countries and they have so many players that I rate as world-class. I have to admit I love travelling and enjoying new experiences.''
When asked about the links with Chelsea, Pato said: "I can't deny I had a great relationship with Ancelotti when he was Milan coach. He is a wise man and showed this by winning everything in football as a player and a coach. He is someone who brings the best out of every player he comes into contact with. When he speaks, he always talks common sense and doesn't waste time. Ancelotti gets straight to the heart of the matter.
''He was a father-figure to me, but this does not mean I'm going to pack my bags and follow him immediately to London. AC Milan is too important to me and I have unfinished business here. I want to be part of a Milan team that becomes a force in world football once again and the aim is to win the Champions League and the Scudetto at this club. Some will smile at this, but I'm serious. Milan is a great club and will achieve great things again.''
Pato signed for AC Milan in the summer of 2007 from Internacional but due to FIFA regulations regarding young, foreign players he was unable to be registered until the following January.
The 20-year-old has scored 27 goals in 62 Serie A game for Milan.