Serie A 2014-15

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bluenine

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by bluenine on Sun Jul 27, 2014 1:45 am

Jaime wrote: Apart from that the backline looks ok although in truth I don't really know much about Dodo.

Shite game on a shite pitch between two b-sides, but I would love to hear what you thought of our two kids, Juan and Dodo. Promising, eh?
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Pras_tama

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Pras_tama on Sun Jul 27, 2014 11:48 am

Blue and abundance, what do you think about Guarin? Is he good enough?
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bluenine

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by bluenine on Sun Jul 27, 2014 12:17 pm

Pras_tama wrote:Blue and abundance, what do you think about Guarin? Is he good enough?

Considering Inter want to sell him, what do you think? Guarin is a good player, but frustratingly inconsistent. When in form, he brings a great deal of intensity into the game and has a good shot in him. Unfortunately, he is often not in form. If  this exchange indeed happens, you will be getting a midfield Hernandez for a striker Hernandez. Which may be ok, as Inter needs back up strikers and Man Utd needs back up midfielders.

On the other hand, maybe he is good enough for a mid table team, he might help you qualify for EL like he did for us Razz
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Fey

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Fey on Tue Jul 29, 2014 3:05 pm



 Laughing  Sad
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Xavier

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Xavier on Tue Jul 29, 2014 10:34 pm

haha wicked... typical Lazio hospitality  Smile 
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bluenine

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by bluenine on Mon Aug 04, 2014 2:12 pm

Inter's pre season results:

Inter* 1-1 Real Madrid
Inter 0-0 Man Utd*
Inter 2-0 Roma

The results look really good, for a club of Inter's (sub)standard. The sense I got from watching all the sames, we seem to have improved in defense thanks to M'Vila and Vidic. But the attack looks as clueless as ever. Also, there was no game plan with the ball, just hopeful long balls to find the striker. We will seriously struggle to score goals this season, apart from some individual magic.

On the positive side, I am impressed with the new recruits - M'Vila, Dodo and Vidic. But we are still a long way behind Juve, Roma, and Napoli.
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bluenine

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by bluenine on Mon Aug 04, 2014 5:17 pm

As the calciomercato draws to a close, Inter's 2014-15 squad is starting to take shape:

The Squad:
Icardi - Palacio
Dodo - Kovacic - M'Vila - Hernanes - Nagatomo
Juan - Vidic - Ranocchia
Handanovic

Bench: Carrizo, Berni, Andreolli, Jonathan, D'Ambrosio, Medel, Kuzmanovic, Alvarez, Osvaldo
"Kids" on bench: MBaye, Krhin, Obi, Laxalt, Botta
OUT: Guarin, Taider, Schelotto, Campagnaro, Silvestre + Zanetti, Milito, Samuel, Cambiasso, Belfodil, Castallazzi, Wallace, Rolando


A few concerns:

1. Center Backs: We are looking weak on the CB side (with only Andreolli and a makeshift Medel on the bench), specially if we want to play a 3 man defense. I am hoping here that if we get rid of Campagnaro and Silvestre, we will make space for Rolando. Perhaps that is the plan.

2. Creativity: A bit worried about the lack of creativity, specially since Kova/Alvarez/Botta have yet to develop an end product. Who will make the goals? So far, I can see a couple of attacking outlets - from the left via Dodo's crosses, and from the midfield via M'Vila-Hernanes's passes. Its not enough. A couple of injuries, and we could end up watching the 2nd part of last season...

3. Wings: Still no solution to the right flank - perhaps a winger is needed. A good winger could also help add creativity, and another attacking outlet. Jonathan and D'Ambrosio don't look the part. I hope this is the area where Thohir decides to give us a "gift". A 20m+ winger/SS would also solve the issue of creativity.


Some positives:

1. Financially sound: From a financial point of view, we have done well so far - reduced the wage bill, while strengthening in some areas. Also the postponed nature of liabilities is a good thing, the impact on our P&L this year will be minimal. This is vital from a FFP point of view, specially if we qualify for CL.

2. Sensible Transfers: From a sporting point of view, Dodo, Vidic and M'Vila are already showing what they bring to the table. That looks promising. Not as sure about Osvaldo (troublemaker who hasn't played much last season) and Medel (quite one dimensional), but overall its probably the most sensible transfer summer we have had since the Mourinho era.

3. Lowered expectations: I really like the fact that Thohir is not putting unrealistic expectations on this team. He has already said that not qualifying for CL will not necessarily mean disaster. That is the right approach, as this new look squad needs to work without much pressure to develop into a good team.

Lets see if there are any surprises during the remaining window. I am hoping for 1 big SS/Winger purchase (Cerci? Lavezzi?) and one cheap CB (Rolando?).


My Expectations:

I guess a lot depends on who else we get this summer, so let me look at 2 scenarios:

1. We get Jovetic + Rolando or equivalent: In this case, we have a squad which could potentially challenge for CL spots. Juve (even after Conte leaving), Roma and Napoli have the advantage of more continuity, whereas Inter will have to integrate a lot of new players into the team - so I think we will be just behind them, but we should be finishing in the top 4, and if one of the top 3 clubs under perform (which is very possible), then we should be ready to take advantage. So a CL spot is not out of reach, and this IMO is what Inter should be aiming at.

So in this case, we aim for Top 3, and minimum expectation is Top 4.

2. No big transfer:  Here we assume that Inter get a back up CB and/or a back up winger, but no big buys. This is possible, as our finances are not the best and Thohir's rebuilding plan is multi-year. This would mean, IMO, that we should be expecting Top 5 finish. We can aim for Top 3, but its extremely unlikely as our level is closer to Fiorentina than to Napoli/Roma - considering that Fiorentina have more continuity. Perhaps even in this scenario, I would expect Mazzarri to finish above Milan, Lazio, etc.

So in this case, we aim for Top 4, and minimum expectation is Top 5.

I so hope we try for the first scenario. God knows we Interisti deserve it.
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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Jaime on Wed Aug 13, 2014 8:14 pm

Is Cerci any good? Apparently Atletico are offering 16m for him...
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Forza Italia!Forza Milan!

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Forza Italia!Forza Milan! on Wed Aug 13, 2014 8:46 pm

Jaime wrote:Is Cerci any good? Apparently Atletico are offering 16m for him...

Yes, he is quite good: fast and can play on either wing.

Milan are after him, but it all depends on what our pimp president allows.
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Jaime

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Jaime on Wed Aug 13, 2014 9:10 pm

Forza Italia!Forza Milan! wrote:
Jaime wrote:Is Cerci any good? Apparently Atletico are offering 16m for him...

Yes, he is quite good: fast and can play on either wing.  

Milan are after him, but it all depends on what our pimp president allows.

Ah, interesting. Thanks Forza!

Makes me sad to think of the state of Milan especially considering you and some other friends who support them. I was glad that you took on Diego Lopez. He will be a big improvement for you in goal at least.
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Forza Italia!Forza Milan!

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Forza Italia!Forza Milan! on Wed Aug 13, 2014 9:29 pm

Jaime wrote:
Forza Italia!Forza Milan! wrote:
Jaime wrote:Is Cerci any good? Apparently Atletico are offering 16m for him...

Yes, he is quite good: fast and can play on either wing.  

Milan are after him, but it all depends on what our pimp president allows.

Ah, interesting. Thanks Forza!

Makes me sad to think of the state of Milan especially considering you and some other friends who support them. I was glad that you took on Diego Lopez. He will be a big improvement for you in goal at least.

Sad

I know man. It's terrible.

Ma sempre, Forza Milan!

Sad
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Jaime

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Jaime on Wed Aug 13, 2014 9:40 pm

Forza Italia!Forza Milan! wrote:
Jaime wrote:
Forza Italia!Forza Milan! wrote:
Jaime wrote:Is Cerci any good? Apparently Atletico are offering 16m for him...

Yes, he is quite good: fast and can play on either wing.  

Milan are after him, but it all depends on what our pimp president allows.

Ah, interesting. Thanks Forza!

Makes me sad to think of the state of Milan especially considering you and some other friends who support them. I was glad that you took on Diego Lopez. He will be a big improvement for you in goal at least.

Sad

I know man. It's terrible.

Ma sempre, Forza Milan!

Sad

"Los grandes siempre vuelven...."

On a more positive note, I was glad to see some new activity on your blog earlier in the spring/summer! Enjoy your writing on serie a/Italian football. Ale
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bluenine

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by bluenine on Mon Aug 18, 2014 1:55 pm

Forza Italia!Forza Milan! wrote:
Jaime wrote:Is Cerci any good? Apparently Atletico are offering 16m for him...

Yes, he is quite good: fast and can play on either wing.  

Milan are after him, but it all depends on what our pimp president allows.

Cerci can also play a decent SS, a decent player. His asking price (Eur 20m) is too much IMO, which has put off the two Milan clubs, but then Atletico should have money to spare.

On a related topic, its not been a great summer in either side of Milan, though Inter have done marginally better in terms of transfers. Looks like Juve, Roma, and Napoli will continue to dominate, with Fiorentina behind their heels if they can retain their players.

Inter need a couple of top signings in order to compete for the title... Milan, they need more than a couple.
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bluenine

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by bluenine on Thu Aug 28, 2014 4:25 pm

Inter trying to sell Alvarez (to Sunderland) and Guarin (to Zenit) to raise funds for Lavezzi. Might not be a bad short term option, but I would prefer Shaqiri, Firmino or Cerci.
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Murray

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Murray on Thu Aug 28, 2014 4:38 pm

I see that Milan want Torres to replace Balotelli.

How can they be so bloody stupid?
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bluenine

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by bluenine on Thu Aug 28, 2014 8:08 pm

Murray wrote:I see that Milan want Torres to replace Balotelli.

How can they be so bloody stupid?

I have my theory. Galliani & co love to "pull off a coup" so that he can boast later on. So much so that over the last few years, its at the detriment of the club. Galliani loves to go after ex-Inter players, former stars at cut prices, etc just in the hope that one of them works out and he can look like an expert in the media. He used to be a good transfer director, but lately his obsession with a "coup" has been disastrous.

Yes, Milan like almost all other Italian club, have a financial crunch. The sensible thing to do is to build for the future and have a proper project in place. It should be easier for Milan than other clubs, because they have such a good infrastructure already in place, and a lot of young players from all over the world dream to play for Milan. And yet, Galliani prefers a cut price Kaka, a cut price Torres, etc instead of investing that money on a future star. The Balotelli "coup" hurt the development of El Shaarawy & Niang. Kaka got in the way of Saponara. And now Torres....

I think what possibly attracts Gallliani to Torres is the fact that he got a £50m star on £11m wages for zero fee and £6m wages. If Torres does well at Milan, Galliani's beaming bald head will be shouting that from the front pages of all newspapers.

It is sad. I have so many friends who are Milan fans, and this is the first summer when they have completely lost all hope... so much so that now making fun of Milan seems kinda cruel, which is quite annoying.
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blutgraetsche

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by blutgraetsche on Fri Aug 29, 2014 8:55 am

Torres? Oh dear Milan...

Serie A today totally reminds me of the Bundesliga pre and post Kirch crisis, up until the mid noughties. The difference however is that the league benefited tremendously from the reforms the German FA had made a few years before that (after 1998 and especially 2000), so it was just a matter of time before the clubs could become competitive in Europe again, based on strong domestic talent that has always been the backbone of the league. For too long, German clubs had wasted the Kirch money on mediocre foreigners, but after Kirch went bankrupt and the TV money dried up, most of them were forced to rely on their youth, another crucial factor in the league's renaissance.

You'd expect the Italian FA to do something by now, having Conte in charge should clearly help in this regard. However, Sky Italia is anything but bankrupt, so the necessity of changing your ways isn't really there for many Italian club owners / managers. FFP puts some financial pressure on them, sure, but apparently not enough, or the wrong conclusions are drawn.
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abundance

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by abundance on Fri Aug 29, 2014 3:58 pm

Yep Pay-TV money is still doping Serie A business - we still have the highest domestic market revenues in the world I believe.
If that dries up it's gonna be real funny.

And the youngster development state of affair is still puzzling - I honestly don't know what could be done to effectively steer the situation, as I don't quite understand why the clubs act this way - I mean, the way they mismanage the career start (18-21 yo) of their prospects is a big net loss whether or not they are considered an essential resource.

There are some sparse signs of wisening-up, anyway.
For example Inter just signed a partnership with a decent 3rd division club, Prato. They helped them find a good sponsor and sent half a dozen youngster there, and some technical staff also.
The plan is to have Prato promoted to Serie B and use them as a closely monitored satellite club.
Which is something that for how plain and simple it is, nobody really does yet here.


On the market, anyway, italian clubs have embraced their actual dimension at this point.
It's only Milan that keeps on having delusions of grandeur.
They HAVE to have the Name, and they don't really care if the guy can still kick a ball or not.
The idea of not making even a faint blip on the international stardom map anymore is still too depressing for them to accept.
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blutgraetsche

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by blutgraetsche on Fri Aug 29, 2014 4:55 pm

I think it's safe to say that Inter are run better than Milan these days. I just don't understand their transfer policy anymore, if there even is one.

Is it mandatory for Serie A clubs to have academies? And more importantly, is it mandatory for Serie B clubs? Or can the clubs cut spending, minimize their investment or even close their youth setup if they want to? That would be something the Italian FA could do.

The age between 18-21 is the most crucial, youngsters need as much playing time on a reasonably high level as possible in those years. Not necessarily 1st division level, but preferably against men (and not kids like themselves) in the lower leagues, getting used to the physical, mental, technical and tactical demands of professional football. So Inter are on the right track in this regard.
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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by bluenine on Sat Aug 30, 2014 1:55 pm

blutgraetsche wrote:I think it's safe to say that Inter are run better than Milan these days. I just don't understand their transfer policy anymore, if there even is one.

Is it mandatory for Serie A clubs to have academies? And more importantly, is it mandatory for Serie B clubs? Or can the clubs cut spending, minimize their investment or even close their youth setup if they want to? That would be something the Italian FA could do.

The age between 18-21 is the most crucial, youngsters need as much playing time on a reasonably high level as possible in those years. Not necessarily 1st division level, but preferably against men (and not kids like themselves) in the lower leagues, getting used to the physical, mental, technical and tactical demands of professional football. So Inter are on the right track in this regard.

Inter are getting on the right track under the new management who clearly have a plan, unlike the previous one. Which is a bit sad, because the Inter academy has been the best in Italy over the last 6-7 years with nothing to show for it. So much talent wasted because Inter couldn't figure out how to transition them from primavera to Serie A, the same 18-21 age that you mention. Prato is a logical solution, hopefully its a long term solution as a step up for our primavera kids.

Football in Italy needs radical changes, but unfortunately I don't see that happening. I think Serie A missed a chance in the recent FIGC elections, Tavecchio seems to be the "lets not rock the boat" kind of choice. At least Albertini had some new ideas, and would have tried to change some things. But it was a forgone conclusion from the beginning, despite the racial remarks, because the lower divisions like Lega Pro control majority of the voting rights. That kinda sums up the problems with Italian football.

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bluenine

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by bluenine on Sat Aug 30, 2014 2:14 pm

Looking at the details of the Torres transfer, its not a bad deal actually... Milan have got him for free, plus managed to get Chelsea to pay for 30% of his wages. Maybe in a slower league, Torres might find some of his old form back - if he does, it can prove to be a decent deal for Milan. It shouldn't be too hard for Torres to out do Pazzini. If he doesn't, its just a loss of 2 years of wages (which is Eur 8m gross pa).

So this could work. Plus Milan have 20m of Balotelli money left to get in a good player. What they do with that is key here.
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Murray

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Murray on Sat Aug 30, 2014 2:29 pm

The Torres deal is terrible, they're still paying him a heap of money. It would have been better to sign nobody.

And I can't belioeve you really expect Milan to spend the Balotelli money.
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Super Progress

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Super Progress on Sun Aug 31, 2014 1:50 pm

How Galliani sees it
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Pierre Littbarski

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Pierre Littbarski on Sun Aug 31, 2014 3:58 pm

Acording to livescore today's lineup will be:

Abate
Alex
Bonera
Armero

Muntari
De Jong
Poli

Menez
Honda
El Sharaawy

Like the look of that.

It would be daft to write Honda off based on performances coming in from the right.

If you want the best of Honda, play him in an advanced central position with pace (the one thing he lacks) either side and in front of him.

That is one of the paciest full back pairings you will see and menez/SES in front of him.
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Murray

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Murray on Sun Aug 31, 2014 4:46 pm

Having a camouflaged Lamborghini didn't prevent Muntari being stopped by the cops



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Pierre Littbarski

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Pierre Littbarski on Sun Aug 31, 2014 5:16 pm

Pierre Littbarski wrote:Acording to livescore today's lineup will be:

Abate
Alex
Bonera
Armero

Muntari
De Jong
Poli

Menez
Honda
El Sharaawy

Like the look of that.

It would be daft to write Honda off based on performances coming in from the right.

If you want the best of Honda, play him in an advanced central position with pace (the one thing he lacks) either side and in front of him.

That is one of the paciest full back pairings you will see and menez/SES in front of him.


11'

AC Milan 1 - 0 Lazio

7' Keisuke Honda

(assist) Stephan El Shaarawy

1 - 0

Coffee
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bluenine

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by bluenine on Sun Aug 31, 2014 10:50 pm

Starting Medel + M'Vila + 3 CBs is like playing with 10 men. What the fuck was Mazzarri thinking... such a wasted opportunity.
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Forza Italia!Forza Milan!

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Forza Italia!Forza Milan! on Mon Sep 01, 2014 12:57 am

Gotta say, the customary defensive lapses aside, Milan looked smoooooth....
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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by Pras_tama on Mon Sep 01, 2014 1:23 am

Forza Italia!Forza Milan! wrote:Gotta say, the customary defensive lapses aside, Milan looked smoooooth....

Did they? Damn!! My TV antenna fell minutes before the kick-off Sad
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bluenine

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Re: Serie A 2014-15

Post by bluenine on Mon Sep 01, 2014 5:17 pm

Forza Italia!Forza Milan! wrote:Gotta say, the customary defensive lapses aside, Milan looked smoooooth....

Hey Forza, I hear Milan today sold Cristante to Benfica... just can't understand that one, he looked very talented... Milan usually don't sell their youth talents for peanuts, unlike Inter... what going on?

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