WEIGHING up the pros and cons of a summer move to Italian giants Juventus is unlikely to have ever been a dilemma faced by a footballer plying his trade in English football's basement division.

For York City's on-loan Sheffield United striker, though, the prospect of joining the Serie A leaders after signing off at Bootham Crescent with a home game against Newport County could become a reality.

The 19-year-old forward, who has turned down a new contract at Bramall Lane, has confirmed rumours that the two-time European champions are interested in securing his services.

De Girolamo has caught the eye during his performances for the Italy under-20 team and proved he can cut the mustard at senior professional level when he netted four times during his first six outings for the Minstermen.

Southampton, Sunderland and Celtic are also reported to be interested in tabling a bid for the Chesterfield-born attacker, while both Manchester clubs and Arsenal have been linked to his name in the past too.

The Blades are understood to have put a £350,000 price tag on his head and any fee is likely to be decided by a tribunal.

Ex-Manchester United and Argentina ace Carlos Tevez currently leads the line for Juve and De Girolamo, who is hungry for first-team football after feeling marginalised in Sheffield, accepts senior appearances for Massimiliano Allegri's men are unlikely on arrival.

But, with an incredible 58 players, currently on the Turin titans' books, out on loan, including a staggering nine goalkeepers, De Girolamo does not feel that needs to become a deciding factor in his plans for the future, even if it might be a struggle to get noticed on the pre-season team photo!

He said: "I haven't had proper talks but people from Juventus have contacted me, so it's one to think about for the summer with my family and friends. I am open to anywhere that I will be given an opportunity to play.

"If I go to Juventus, I know I'm not going to be playing first-team football but there's always an opportunity to go out on loan to a Serie B team where I would be playing every week. I don't speak fluent Italian and struggle a bit but I'm getting a bit better.

"I can understand more than I can talk but, if I moved to Italy, that would come within two or three months or so."

Rather than becoming distracted by talk of moves to big clubs, De Girolamo also reckons that his form for the Minstermen during the final 11 games of the season could attract further interest in his signature.

"I would love to go to Juventus but other clubs are interested in me as well," he revealed. "All I'm doing at the moment is concentrating on playing for York City and putting myself in the shop window because I'm hoping to get as many inquiries as possible, so I have a wide range of choices in the summer."

De Girolamo was part of an Italian under-20 side that defeated their Qatar counterparts 6-0 last month with many of the opposition players being lined up to represent the host nation at the 2022 World Cup finals.

But, despite the margin of his country's victory, De Girolamo has insisted the Arab side should not be written off as also-rans for that competition already.

He added: "It was a harder game than the result suggested and they were a good team. Every player was really fast and they had a lot of pace in the team but we played really well and I think quite a few of our players will push on to play for the Italian first team.

"It was a brilliant game to be involved in and really enjoyable. It's always great to play for your country."

De Girolamo is now primed to return to club football for this afternoon's home match with Carlisle and, should he start, will be happy to slot into the 4-4-2 formation employed by boss Russ Wilcox last time out despite previously being used by the Minstermen in a bridging role between midfield and attack.

He said: "Before I came to York, I always played as one of two strikers. I can drop into the hole, as the gaffer likes to play me, but I would also be happy to play with Jake (Hyde), Wes (Fletcher) or Emile (Sinclair) in a front two."

With back-to-back home matches in four days, De Girolamo is also hoping to contend better with a difficult Bootham Crescent surface than he did on his return to the club for a third loan spell.

He admitted: "I did struggle against Exeter a bit with getting on the ball and turning and dribbling, but it's just something we have to deal with by moving the ball around and playing to the conditions. We travel well as a team but we have got two home games on the trot now and, if we can take six points, that would be good for our season."

New glove story for a Happy Wanderer

York Press:
Michael Ingham soars through the air past former York City keeper Mick Granger

FORMER Happy Wanderers shot-stopper Mick Granger ran the rule over current keepers Michael Ingham and Jason Mooney following a visit to the club's training ground this week.

Granger, now 83, played during the first two rounds of City's famous run to the FA Cup semi-finals in 1955 and also starred during a 3-0 triumph over top-flight Birmingham City three years later.

Two strokes in recent years have seen the ex-Minsterman move into the Amarna Home, off Boroughbridge Road, but he was thrilled to visit his old club, which started with a behind-the-scenes tour of Bootham Crescent.

Son Mark Granger, a local referee, said of his father's visit: "The trip was a massive boost for dad and we are really appreciative that the club and home worked together to make it possible. He couldn't believe how tall Michael and Jason were, though, as he was only 5ft 9in in his heyday."

City's general manager John McGhee added: "Mick is a name from the past glory days of the club who spent a long time here. We are very much a community club who want to look after people who have given such service to the club and we would like to extend our invitation to any former players, like Mick, who want to make one last visit to Bootham Crescent before we move stadium."

Hyde mark in March to summit

JAKE Hyde is the frontrunner in the Press Player of the Month for March contest.

The 24-year-old striker picked up our man-of-the-match accolade after scoring his eighth goal of the season during last weekend's 2-1 defeat at AFC Wimbledon to collect three points towards the standings.

He also topped our online man-of-the-match poll along with Stephane Zubar to earn a share of the two bonus points on offer for the competition.

Zubar received a further two points as our second-highest rated performer at Kingsmeadow and The Press Player of the Year leader Keith Lowe was also rewarded with a point for his efforts.

To be in with a chance of presenting The Press Player of the Month prize for March before a home game, register your man-of-the-match vote for today’s game against Carlisle on this site or tweeting @daveflettpress

The Press Player of the Year standings: Lowe 24 points, Coulson 21, Penn 21, Ilesanmi 16, McCoy 15, Hyde 14, McCombe 14, Olejnik 14, Summerfield 14, Zubar 12, Fletcher 11, De Girolamo 9, Carson 8, Ingham 8, Halliday 7, Montrose 7, Straker 7, Cisak 3, Jarvis 3, Benning 2, Sinclair 2, Winfield 2.

The Press Player of the Month for March standings: Hyde 5, Fletcher 3, Zubar 3, Carson 2, Halliday 2, Lowe 1.

Goals: Hyde 8, Fletcher 7, Lowe 5, Coulson 4, De Girolamo 4, Carson 2, Sinclair 2, Summerfield 2, Penn 1, Winfield 1, Zubar 1.

Assists: Coulson 11, Hyde 4, Carson 3, McCoy 3, Meikle 3, Penn 3, De Girolamo 2, Fletcher 2, Halliday 1, Lowe 1, McCombe 1, Montrose 1, Straker 1, Summerfield 1.

Bad boys: Penn one red, six yellow; McCoy five yellow; Halliday one red, three yellow; Hyde one red, two yellow; Carson, McCombe both three yellow; Benning, Coulson, Fletcher, Ilesanmi, Montrose all two yellow; Jarvis, Zubar both one red; Lowe, Olejnik, Platt, Straker, Summerfield all one yellow.