Summer Fix Guide for Milan, Inter, Juventus Napoli, and Fiorentina
With the Serie A season a month away from commencing, let's take a look at how the five top teams in Italy are fixing their rosters to further improve their chances at not only a Scudetto, but a spot in the top three which equals Champions League contention.
- Completely refurbished the attack, which was last season's main weakness.
- New arrivals Fernando Llorente and Carlos Tevez will give the Bianconeri a formidable partnership that figures to be one of the best in Serie A.
- To bolster defensive depth after the Lucio experiment failed, Juventus have brought in Torino defender Angelo Ogbonna to compete for a place in the back three.
- Antonio Conte has hinted that he'd like to try out a revolutionary 3-3-4 formation, with Kwadwo Asamoah pushed to the left wing.
- There has been much speculation about the Edinson Cavani move, and it's almost a certainty that he'll wear a different kit next season. However, don't be surprised if Napoli are a better team overall in the upcoming campaign.
- Real Madrid wing-forward Jose Callejon has been brought in. He's the type of player Rafael Benitez likes—who runs plenty on the flanks and puts himself in dangerous positions to score.
- For the opposite wing, Napoli scooped up tricky PSV winger Dries Mertens, who looks to feature on the left. He also gives Napoli a dangerous set-piece specialist to take over for Cavani.
- Midfielder Andrea Poli signs from Sampdoria. He'll give Milan a technical presence in the center of the park who will fill the mezz'ala role in the new 4-3-1-2 formation.
- It seems that Keisuke Honda will join the team in January. The objective now is Fiorentina playmaker Adem Ljajic, who would fit in perfectly behind the strikers.
- Virtually nothing has changed in the defensive sector, and you have to think one more piece needs to be brought in if Milan are to challenge for silverware.
- Despite the potential departures of stars Adem Ljajic and Stevan Jovetic, there are little doubts in Tuscany that the Viola will be a much better side next season.
- The biggest signing so far has been Mario Gomez from Bayern Munich. With bonuses included, the €20 million paid for him is a club record. The recently turned 28-year-old striker is right in his prime and is hungry for a chance to compete again after losing his place to Mario Mandzukic in Germany.
- Other than Gomez, January transfer signing Giuseppe Rossi will finally get his chance to play. Meanwhile, experienced winger Joaquin was brought over from Malaga. Joaquin is a player who can be world class on his day, and is coming off one of his best seasons with Malaga. His crosses will be welcomed by Gomez in the center of the attack.
- Perhaps the biggest change of the summer will not happen on the pitch. Young coach Andrea Stramaccioni was sacked after his Inter endured one of the worst seasons in club history. Napoli's Walter Mazzarri was hired to steer the ship back in the right direction.
- Argentine striker Mauro Icardi will head to the Nerazzurri after impressing with Sampdoria. The 20-year-old will get his chance in the aging attacking core.
- Antonio Cassano was traded to Parma for youngster Ishak Belfodil. Belfodil is a tall, wiry striker who has great dribbling ability and a scoring touch. Alongside Icardi, Inter might have found their attack for the next decade.
- There's no doubt Mazzarri influenced the decision of bringing over former Napoli defender Hugo Campagnaro. He'll help strengthen the third worst defensive unit in the league.