Tottenham linked Italian: I want to copy Nottingham Forest and Celtic hero

Manolo Gabbiadini has said he wants to become a free kick expert like Pierre van Hooijdonk.

Sampdoria striker Manolo Gabbiadini says he aims to become one of the very best free-kick takers, and is studying expert examples of how to do it.

The in-form Serie A forward has hit the headlines after a run of form which saw him strike three goals in his opening four games.

The Evening Standard claimed that Tottenham Hotspur have scouted him, although the forward's agent says he wants to remain in Italy.

Gabbiadini simply wants to be the best he can, and that means copying set pieces from players he greatly admires.

He told "For free kicks, besides Juninho, I liked a lot Pierre van Hooijdonk, the Dutchman that played at Feyenoord and Ssored against Juventus. Pirlo is the best now."

Van Hooijdonk was an often underrated set piece taker in the world game, but his track record of scoring direct free kicks was impressive.

He played for Celtic and Nottingham Forest in the late 90s, spending four seasons in Britain.

A former Dutch international, he is now seen as a pundit on television in his homeland, and was involved in a bust-up with Manchester United striker Robin van Persie this summer.

Gabbiadini went onto add that he was frustrated to have missed out on the Italian national squad for the upcoming qualifiers, and is determined to earn selection for November's team.

Here is a look at one of Van Hooijdonk's more memorable free-kicks:

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