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Milan (AFP) - Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma apologised after his early blunder saw AC Milan trail after just 33 seconds in a 1-0 defeat to Sampdoria in Serie A on Saturday which could damage their Champions League push.
Donnarumma picked up an Alessio Romagnoli back pass and put the ball straight into the path of Sampdoria forward Gregoire Defrel as AC Milan fell to a second straight defeat after a 3-2 derby loss to Inter before the international break.
"Mistakes happen and I apologise to everyone," said the 20-year-old.
"I'm sorry I affected the game. But it won't be a mistake to break me down.
"I've gone through worse. Last year I went through a very rough time and if I managed to get through that, I can get through this too.
"One mistake won't destroy everything we've worked for."
Sampdoria captain Fabio Quagliarella came over to reassure his fellow Italian international.
"He's a great friend, we spent the last 10 days together on international duty and after the goal, he immediately came over to console me."
Patrick Cutrone was twice denied the equaliser with a Krzysztof Piatek header also saved.
Milan also had a late penalty appeal turned down after a VAR review for a Nicola Murru tackle on Piatek.
Milan sporting director Leonardo insisted they are still firmly on track for a Champions League return, as they sit fourth, two points behind Inter who play Lazio on Sunday.
Roma are a further four points behind in fifth ahead of their game against Napoli.
"Milan haven't managed to reach the Champions League for six years, but this team is finding its shape and we hope to achieve it," the former club legend added.