END OF SEASON 4 - A FAMILIAR FEEL
A slightly inconsistent campaign that managed to right itself in the nick of time to once more deliver European football. Below the peerless Juve side it is generally pretty tight in Serie A at the moment with back to back wins always capable of giving you upward trajectory. Here's the table and notable performers.
Once more in the Europa League & Italian Cup we had a good runs without actually threatening to win them.
With the club making steady progress I was able to make this addition in the summer. Even at the price we paid I think he's a steal. He could fit into anyone's side, not just ours, and must be ready for his first international caps.
And with the club just beginning to push on little lets take a look at the rest of this summer's signings -
That a fairly typical batch of signings for us - perhaps 2 or 3 more than normal quantity wise - as we once again target up and coming players, particularly Italians. D'Orazio, Ahmetaj and Cappa can all be found at the start of the game lurking deep in other club's youth teams but we have wheedled them out, as we have done before with the Capone's and the Kean's, just before they hopefully bloom into excellent professional footballers.
THE SQUAD: FULL REVIEW
Overall we are very well balanced, with a hard working blend of home grown professional players. Let me review each department.
The keepers are decent but could be better. Viviano is ageing and coming to the end; Brignoli isn't good enough to be no.1; and Hutvagner isn't fully developed and ready just yet.
The defence is now a familiar and settled group. We don't concede a lot of goals and there is no obvious weakness. Great that both centre halves have now been capped by Italy.
Star Man > Pedro Pereira for me. A really good young fullback fulfilling his potential. Wouldn't surprise me if I lost him at anytime to a bigger club.
One For The Future > German Staricco. I liked the look of this young regen from the first time I saw him. He could be very good.
The biggest department offering a lot of choice and depth. Arguably the strongest area of the club. In most games we pick a 5-man midfield and we can just about carry these numbers with rotation and European football.
Star Man > Bruno Fernandes. Declared himself Italian and now capped. He is the team's heartbeat. Mr Consistent.
One For The Future > Antonio Andreotti. Again a regen. We might have poached one here before the big boys got to him. An advanced playmaker. Great mentals.
A smaller group with often just one up top in away games. The eagle-eyed will note Bonazzoli has gone. I just allowed to him to go to Napoli, balancing the books, and making room for Pierini to return from loan who I think will breakout now.
Star Man > I'm going to say it is Kean purely as he's done the most this far and has proven himself.
One For The Future > Damiano Zanella. He's one of our own. It's difficult sometimes when only one place is available and competition for places hots up but I still back our own guy.