Italy also raises the curtain on a new season with many questions. The current Milanese champion opens the ball this Saturday evening.
Redemption mission for Juve
For two long years, La Vella has let their Milanese rivals pass the Scudetto. But the management of Turin, led by an audience consisting of Maurizio Arrivabene, Pavel Nedved and Federico Cherubini, put the plates on the big ones this summer. If they lost the matchup with Paulo Dybala (left to Roma), Juventus, however, strengthened their position with the arrival of the Brazilian Bremer, voted best defender in Italy last season, from local rivals Torino. A nice blow swept under the noses of Inter Milan to compensate for the departure of Matthijs de Ligt to Bayern Munich. The wings have also been transformed with the signing of Filip Kostic from Eintracht Frankfurt, who comes to rejuvenate the old Torino teams (Alex Sandro, Danilo, Juan Cuadrado).
At the end of their respective club contracts, Paul Pogba (Man Utd) and Angel Di Maria (PSG) have also signed for Juventus. Enough to provide international experience, which was sorely lacking in the last two seasons. The files of Leandro Paredes and Memphis Depay are still being negotiated but should be added to Juve’s list of new signings. With so many new faces and the expected return of Federico Chiesa (expected at the end of September), the Turinese hope to quickly regain the crown by playing the renewal card.
Crossed destinies for the two Milans
Reigning champions AC Milan have finally had a fairly quiet summer. The management of Paolo Maldini preferred to play the card of continuity by adding small pieces of the future to strengthen the rotation of Stefano Pioli. The Rossoneri’s main summer coup is Charles De Ketelaere, a 21-year-old attacking midfielder bought from FC Bruges for €32 million. Nothing more to add, except the free arrival of Divock Origi or the loaned returns of Yacine Adli and Tommaso Pobega who can finally be thrown into the deep Milan to compensate for the departure of Franck Kessié in the middle. The goal is simple: keep the Scudetto on the shirt next year.
For Milan’s rival Inter Milan, the observation is almost similar. Without flash or flourish, Beppe Marrotta puts his full trust in the champions managers in 2021. Apart from the return of Romelu Lukaku on loan and the arrival of André Onana in the cages, the Nerazzurri do not register many reinforcements. In spite of everything, Raoul Bellanova stands out, a young 22-year-old Italian winger eagerly awaited for the future of the Nazionale, who arrives at Giuseppe Meazza on loan from Cagliari.
Point of view in Rome
In the pink columns of the Gazzetta dello Sport, AS Roma is the club that has caused the most ink to flow this summer. At the same time, what a signing window for the Louve who aim to find the Serie A podium this season after four campaigns to peer into the doors of the Italian Top 5. Under the orders of José Mourinho, the Giallorossi will be closely watched with one of the best offensive potential in the country, led by the trio of Dybala-Abraham-Zaniolo. A dream attack that could be offered as luxury prankster Andrea Belotti, in advanced discussions. The central block was rebuilt by Tiago Pinto’s management with the signings of Nemanja Matic and Georginio Wijnaldum to surround Lorenzo Pellegrini. It should also be noted the arrival of the former Lille, Zeki Celik on the right side of the Roman defense. La Louve has a good chance of playing this season and to quote the words of Fabio Capello, the last coach to win the Scudetto in Rome, informed the gazette this week : “Gypsies can no longer hide”.
Across the Tiber, Lazio are also receiving a facelift with plenty of key additions for Maurizio Sarri. The place in the defensive sector was the main mission with the arrival of the former captain of Milan Alessio Romagnoli (end of contract), the young Spanish defender Mario Gila, from the training center of Real Madrid and finally Nicolo Casale, author of ‘a very good season at Hellas Verona under Igor Tudor. The goalkeeping position has been completely overhauled with the signings of Luis Maximiano and Ivan Provedel. But Lazio’s real star recruit is Marcos Antônio, a Brazilian midfielder from Shakhtar Donetsk. This is enough to perfectly surround Zaccagni, Milinković-Savic or even Matías Vecino, also recruited by Lazio this summer, in Sarri’s central block. This landscape of beautiful promises, however, is darkened by a small storm that darkens the sky of the Biancocelesti: the probable future departure of Luis Alberto. The Spaniard with 11 assists last year asked to leave.
From Naples to Bergamo, the train hangs
In Campania, the transfer market was rather gloomy at the foot of Vesuvius. Very discreet, Napoli only activated very late with the signing of Korean central Kim Min-jae for 18 million euros from Fenerbahce. Kalidou Koulibaly’s regular replacement arrives in Naples alongside Georgian youngster Khvicha Kvaratskhelia at Dinamo Batumi, Brighton’s Norwegian defender Leo Östigard and former PSG goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu. The last major file to manage before the end of August will be the sale of Fabio Ruiz to PSG, in which Keylor Navas will also participate who would do the opposite. This transaction will domino effect finance the strong likely arrival of Giacomo Raspadori in the offensive sector.
In Bergamo, Atalanta’s beautiful epic could take a bitter turn. Author of a worrying second half last season, Dea saw the departures of Aleksey Miranchuk, Matteo Pessina and youngster Matteo Lovato for ultimately very few major reinforcements. The only real recruit (Jémerie Boga and Merih Demiral are exercising the call options) is Ederson, a young Brazilian midfielder who had a good campaign with Salernitana. A good move without a doubt, but which may seem quite insufficient given the face displayed by Gasperini’s players after Christmas. Playing the continuity card when your recipe no longer seems effective is a real risk.
But also: Monza in the highest category, Sassuolo without Scamacca, Hellas Verona under Gabriel Cioffi, Torino and Sampdoria in danger, little Cremonese thumb