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Hamilton

General Transfer Talk

Started by Hamilton,

1 hour ago, Superblue_1986 said:

He [Ethan Ampadu] needs to develop and he won't get that being fourth or fifth choice in a couple of positions here next season.

Agreed.

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a tad harsh
and the right type of winger and formation often can morph into a sort of false-SS at times in terms of positional play, depending on rotational paths and ball movement


The only way I see Werner working as a CF is in a counter striking system, even though Werner misses many big Chances, especially the 1 vs 1 situations with the goalkeeper. But a long ball to him with his pace could work out.

In German national team, he was used as a CF, but did not perform, so Löw started using him as a winger and he has the pace for it. I am very sceptical about Werner playing CF. Would prefer Havertz because I know he can play CF. Using a not proven CF as our main striker is not what I want.
I am sick of wasting money on CFs. Higuain, Falcao, Morata and Torres.

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communicate and Atomiswave like this

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4 minutes ago, killer1257 said:


 

 


The only way I see Werner working as a CF is in a counter striking system, even though Werner misses many big Chances, especially the 1 vs 1 situations with the goalkeeper. But a long ball to him with his pace could work out.

In German national team, he was used as a CF, but did not perform, so Löw started using him as a winger and he has the pace for it. I am very sceptical about Werner playing CF. Would prefer Havertz because I know he can play CF. Using a not proven CF as our main striker is not what I want.
I am sick of wasting money on CFs. Higuain, Falcao, Morata and Torres.

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I had edited my post but you had already quoted it, sorry

dc6a3ec6bf48617b918bb41640cbf737.png

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Its Sweden vs Germany atm
lol
Sweden wins 5 3
73adc1c8871a142fbc824296dcb303e9.png
Now, it stands Sweden 6 3 ^^.
But don't forget I can easily change the score into 0 3 Germany lol

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7 minutes ago, killer1257 said:

Now, it stands Sweden 6 3 ^^.
But don't forget I can easily change the score into 0 3 Germany lol

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touche

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On 5/29/2020 at 0:04 AM, MoroccanBlue said:

To be fairly honest I would much rather have my full backs small, quick and technical vs broad and strong. 

Give me a Dani Alves type over an Ivanovic/Azpilicueta type any day. Especially with the way football is evolving. 

Barcelona left back was abidal

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If Juventus wants Emerson and Jorginho so much, they can put Demiral in the negotiation.. For me a great CB, potentially extraordinary.

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If Juventus wants Emerson and Jorginho so much, they can put Demiral in the negotiation.. For me a great CB, potentially extraordinary.
Isn't he injured?

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7 minutes ago, killer1257 said:

Isn't he injured?

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Yes, it will be back in about a month.

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27 minutes ago, ILeoniBlu said:

If Juventus wants Emerson and Jorginho so much, they can put Demiral in the negotiation.. For me a great CB, potentially extraordinary.

Yes but unfortunately they are offering us Berna and MDS :rolleyes:

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6 minutes ago, NikkiCFC said:

Yes but unfortunately they are offering us Berna and MDS :rolleyes:

Yes, they are smart. I hope Marina tells him "ciao ciao" :D

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Noob question. is the transfer window officially open? 

Isn't the transfer window usually open on June 1st? 

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14 minutes ago, Fernando said:

Noob question. is the transfer window officially open? 

Isn't the transfer window usually open on June 1st? 

I've been looking everywhere for the answer, to no prevail. 

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19 minutes ago, Fernando said:

Noob question. is the transfer window officially open? 

Isn't the transfer window usually open on June 1st? 

You can always buy players. But they are saying that this summer transfer window will be in September. 

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Nicolo Zaniolo is ‘part-Gerrard’ in style and Roma hope he can be Totti’s heir

https://theathletic.com/1854044/2020/06/05/horncastle-zaniolo-roma-italy-serie-a/

ZANIOLO-1024x683.png

“You know I wanted to bring him with me,” Stefano Vecchi tells The Athletic.

After cleaning up in youth football with Inter Milan Under-19s and impressing in a caretaker role with the first team, Venezia thought Vecchi was the man to succeed where Pippo Inzaghi had come up short and take them back to Serie A for the first time since 2002. Perhaps he would have done too if Nicolo Zaniolo, the star of his treble-winning Inter side, had jumped aboard a vaporetto water-taxi and joined him at the Pierluigi Penzo stadium.

Fabio Capello regards Zaniolo as “the biggest talent in Italy”. Vecchi knows that as well as anyone. Zaniolo scored 14 goals from midfield under his stewardship to inspire Inter’s kids to a national championship in 2018. “It wasn’t enough,” Vecchi laughs. “Nicolo could have scored more! It wasn’t hard for him to get on the scoresheet. It didn’t take much. I’ve always compared Nicolo with players from the English game: part-Gerrard, part-Lampard. Players who run the length of the pitch, get into the box, and score goals.”

Vecchi expected the teenager to take Serie B in his stride. Zaniolo had already got a taste of the second tier with Virtus Entella in 2017. That was where Vecchi first laid eyes on him.

Out of nowhere, the innovative Entella (owner Antonio Gozzi provided the seed money to start Wyscout) made it to the final of the Under-19 Coppa Italia for the first time in club history. You didn’t need an encyclopedic online scouting platform to identify who was behind the fairytale cup run. The box scores were enough as Zaniolo’s name kept appearing in print next to big upsets. When he wasn’t eliminating richer, better-resourced youth sectors from Bologna, Torino and Fiorentina, he was training and playing with the Entella first team in Serie B. Ciccio Caputo, the Sassuolo striker who led the line for Entella’s seniors at the time, says Zaniolo had “absurd ability”.

All of a sudden, big clubs started circling the 17-year-old.

Entella’s opponents in that Coppa Italia final, Roma, got in touch about signing him but by then, it seemed almost certain Zaniolo was set to become a Juventus player. Except Inter swooped in and placed him in Vecchi’s hands. Given the success they enjoyed together — a league title, a Super Cup and the prestigious Viareggio tournament trophy — it was only natural that Vecchi wished for a reunion. Everything happened so damn fast that summer, though.

Zaniolo Inter

Inter were in talks to sign Radja Nainggolan from Roma, with how the deal was to be structured a matter of negotiation. They could have paid the asking price and let that be that. But keeping some cash in reserve for other signings and the chance to book a profit on one of their young players, offered as collateral, started to have some appeal.

Roma’s recruitment department, headed at the time by Monchi, looked at Inter’s academy and expressed a preference for one of two players; one was Ionut Radu, the Romanian goalkeeper, and the other was Zaniolo. “Radu had already gone to Genoa (on loan) though and Inter didn’t want to sell Zaniolo. They’re not idiots,” Monchi recalled. “They really wanted Radja though, so a compromise had to be made. The deal would still have gone through without Zaniolo, though. It wasn’t a non-negotiable.”

Which is why it now looks like Inter committed a gaffe in letting him go.

Their sporting director Piero Ausilio compares it with the time the club used Leonardo Bonucci to persuade Genoa to give up Diego Milito and Thiago Motta in the summer before the 2009-10 treble-winning season. The move was justified as sacrificing the future in order to win now. Except its nine years and counting since Inter won something and Nainggolan now finds himself out on loan at Cagliari.

Ausilio maintains he has only one regret in football and this isn’t it — selling Philippe Coutinho to Liverpool in 2013 is — but, as Vecchi can attest, the speed at which Zaniolo’s career took off from here was astounding.

Zaniolo had spent that summer at the Under-19 European Championship in Finland.

Italy reached the final and took Portugal to extra time before losing 4-3. Roberto Mancini, the senior national team coach, came away impressed with Zaniolo. “We went to have a look at his profile and saw he still hadn’t played anywhere really — neither in Serie B or C. So we said to ourselves, ‘Alright then, we’ll have a go’.”

As was the case with Massimo Maccarone at the start of the millennium and Marco Verratti a decade later, Zaniolo was called up to the full Italy squad without ever having played a top-flight minute. “I was watching Sky Sports when the squad came out,” he said. “I saw my name and couldn’t believe it. I thought there must have been some mistake with the graphic.”

Zaniolo Italy

When he joined up with the squad in September 2018, he had still yet to play a single minute for Roma and it seemed Mancini was making a point, daring clubs to be more courageous and start picking the talent from within. Roma had thought about sending the kid out on loan. “We didn’t think he’d get the game time and put in the performances he did,” Vecchi says. Next thing he knew, Zaniolo was making his professional debut.

Normally, coaches ease prospects in. In Italy, especially, they are careful, too cautious perhaps not to “burn” new talent. And yet Roma’s manager at the time, Eusebio Di Francesco, threw Zaniolo straight into the frying pan on maximum heat. His first-ever game came at the very highest level; Real Madrid in the Bernabeu on a Champions League night.

“I can remember every single detail,” Zaniolo later reflected. “Every touch. The morning before, I had no idea I’d be going to Madrid for the game. Di Francesco broke it to me in the final team meeting without any warning. He put me in with the senior pros, made me understand what it’s like to be in the dressing room, and how important it is to work hard every day. I owe him a lot.”

The sales of Kevin Strootman and Nainggolan opened up space for Zaniolo, as did the struggles of Steven N’Zonzi and the predictable fragility of Javier Pastore. He was fortunate to encounter Di Francesco, who had established Verratti in the first team at Pescara, then dome the same with Domenico Berardi, Lorenzo Pellegrini and Simone Zaza at Sassuolo. “Sure, Nicolo had great potential but to do what he did straight out of the under-19s…” Vecchi pauses. “Well, it’s almost unprecedented. It’s not normal. To see him playing at the Bernabeu and do well there… Di Francesco did a great job putting faith in him and deserves recognition for that.”

Zaniolo Roma Real

Vecchi soon had to give up any hope of Zaniolo joining him in Venice. By the time the January 2019 transfer window opened, his protege had not fizzled out. The 19-year-old instead continued to burn brightly. “If you look at how he’s built,” Vecchi observes, “he’s got devastating power. Nicolo’s got such strength that it’s hard to knock him off the ball. His (left) foot isn’t bad either, is it? Not bad at all, in fact.”

Zaniolo’s first senior goal encapsulated everything Vecchi touched upon. Reporters who labelled Di Francesco crazy for starting this unknown at the Bernabeu began to see why he had been so bold.

It was Boxing Day 2018 and Roma were hosting Sassuolo at the Olimpico. Zaniolo made a driving run down the right, broke into the penalty area and cut inside. He then dummied a shot and put a defender and goalkeeper Andrea Consigli on their backsides before dinking the ball up and over them into the far corner. It was reminiscent of one of the many great goals Francesco Totti scored for the club against Sampdoria, and Roma fans started to proclaim: “The King of Rome has an heir.”

Zaniolo Sassuolo

Zaniolo rents a flat from Totti — it’s the place Alisson moved out of when he joined Liverpool at the start of that 2018-19 season — and he looks as settled there as he does in Serie A. “He’s got to this level so quickly because physically, he stands out,” Vecchi argues. “For that reason, players who are further along in their development, even adults, they can’t handle him.”

It helps that Zaniolo’s father, Igor, was also a player.

He was a member of the Genoa side Gian Piero Gasperini earned Serie A promotion with in 2006 but is more of a name down the Ligurian coast at La Spezia, where he banged in a lot more lower-league goals. “I played against his dad,” Vecchi says. “He was one of those strikers who used to be so annoying for us defenders because he was a real battler, always in your ear, arguing, pushing his team on. Nicolo will no doubt have some of his dad’s character. He’ll get some good advice. Igor knows what goes through a player’s head. It’s undoubtedly an advantage.”

Igor will presumably have recommended that his son avoids headbutting an opponent, as he did in 1996 — an offence that cost him a six-month ban when playing under Sandro Mazzola’s brother, Ferruccio, at Aosta.

Now running a bar down by the Spezia waterfront, Igor evidently knows what’s best for his boy. He took Nicolo out of Fiorentina’s youth ranks when he was 16 and organised for him to be closer to home than Florence, just an hour up the road with Chiavari-based Entella.

The commute to Tuscany was a long one and he also wasn’t convinced Fiorentina were playing his son enough for him to develop.

They intended to send him on loan to play for Carpi or Cesena’s Primavera rather than give Zaniolo game time with their own under-19s and, boy, did he come back to haunt them. Zaniolo scored as Entella dumped Fiorentina out of the Coppa Italia semi-finals at that level. His most recent Serie A goal also came at the Artemio Franchi in Roma’s 4-1 win over them back in December. “It’s more than a regret,” Cristiano Masitto, Fiorentina’s former under-17s coach, tells The Athletic. “They could have believed in him more.”

Masitto watched from the sidelines as Zaniolo fired his side to a national final, which Fiorentina lost to Inter, and thinks the team could have won the Viareggio trophy had its “trequartista” stuck around a little longer: “Zaniolo was vivacious in character. He always had a smile on his face. He was ingenious, creative; already a game-changer. He had the abilities you expect from a much older player.

“That year with us, he was very good in how he used to control the ball on the turn. If you played the ball into him fast, it didn’t matter if it was a bad pass; he somehow managed to control it and make it playable again. Then his final ball — his dribbling and final ball was what you’d expect from an older player. He was devastating in the final third. The way he used to move the ball and open up the pitch with his left foot; he was able to pull off the hardest and most difficult things, the kind of things I’d never seen from a player that age before.”

Masitto remembers one goal in particular, another towering header like the one Zaniolo would score for Inter against Juventus in the Primavera semi-finals in June 2018, when “almost from a standstill, he must have been 20 or 30cm above his marker. From that moment, we realised he was getting stronger. We realised just how explosive he was. The power he has in his legs in remarkable”.

That goal came after Masitto had left Zaniolo out for five games as he sought to effect a change in mentality. Vecchi also mentioned how “there were times when I used to get a bit angry with him because if he scored a goal, did well in training or had a good spell during a game, he seemed happy with that. I always tried to push him to give everything. He could have scored more”.

At last summer’s Under-21 European Championship, Gigi Di Biagio also disciplined Zaniolo and Moise Kean (below) after they showed up late to a fitness session. Both were then left out for the decisive final group game against Belgium and Mancini then overlooked them for the senior squad’s next get-together in August.

“For two or three days in a row, me and Moise were late for team meetings with the under-21s,” Zaniolo recently told Sky. “Di Biagio did the right thing in leaving us out. We were playing PlayStation and forgot about the meeting. We didn’t look at the schedule. It won’t ever happen again. It was a negative period for me. I was physically and mentally worn out. I let myself go. That situation taught me how I need to behave and the consequences of my actions because I had a disappointing Euros.”

Kean Zaniolo

Capello raised the issue again after watching another exciting teenager, Sebastiano Esposito, break through at Inter and shine against Borussia Dortmund last October. His advice to the playmaker was “don’t go down the same path” as Zaniolo, later claiming he was misinterpreted amid flak from Roma fans, some of whom sang some pretty disparaging songs about their former player and coach soon afterwards.

Zaniolo did more than bounce back, though.

He has kicked on under Roma’s new coach Paulo Fonseca, even as a right winger, where he cuts inside and dashes between the lines to play off Edin Dzeko. StatsBomb data shows that, of players with at least 1,200 minutes under their belt this season, Zaniolo has the second-highest xG at Roma and leads them in aggressive actions and dribbles. Only Jeremie Boga, Sassuolo’s out-and-out winger, makes more successful dribbles among players under the age of 23 in all of Serie A.

Zaniolo’s average carry length (7.64m) — also inferior only to that of Boga — is indicative of his box-to-box engine. “Nicolo played as a No 10 for Entella,” Vecchi recalls. “With me, he played a bit as a No 10, a bit as a No 8 on the left side of midfield. He can make the difference from the wing too, as we’re seeing at Roma. But Nicolo can play anywhere if he wants to. For me, he’s a modern midfielder, the kind that can do a bit of everything.”

By Christmas, Zaniolo already had as many league goals (four) as he had in all of last season. He contributed two to Italy’s 9-1 thumping of Armenia in November and looked set for inclusion in Mancini’s squad for the now-postponed European Championship this summer. But then, while running at Juventus’ defence on January 12, his foot got caught in the Olimpico turf and his knee contorted. Zaniolo, carried off in tears, had blown out his ACL.

As Roma rallied around him, putting together a moving video of fans wishing Zaniolo well, some Lazio fans left a banner outside their arch rivals’ Trigoria training ground calling him a cripple and drawing comparisons with Francesco “Kawasaki” Rocca, the lightning-fast winger whose career was cut short in 1981 by a serious knee injury. It certainly didn’t endear Lazio to Zaniolo who, perhaps understandably, rarely passes up an opportunity to express his disdain for them.

Zaniolo was back doing sprint work this week and may even play a role on the run-in when this season resumes in a couple of weeks. Roma are fifth, two points behind fourth-placed Atalanta, who have a game in hand and also have an advantageous head-to-head record. Reclaiming a Champions League spot after a year out of the competition is key, particularly as the club made an €87 million loss in the first six months of this season. It would certainly go some way towards helping Roma resist offers for their best players. “Joking around with Nicolo, I always used to say to him, ‘Look, if I don’t see you playing in a Liverpool shirt one day, it’ll mean you haven’t made enough of yourself’,” Vecchi laughs.

Zaniolo has kissed the badge and told fans he wants to be a “bandiera” — the team’s talismanic standard-bearer — in the same way Totti and Daniele De Rossi were in the past. Right now though, his focus has to be on coming back stronger than ever and picking up where he left off.

As Mancini recently said in one of Christian Vieri’s Instagram Live shows, “He can be extraordinary”.

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