AC Milan: Why Alessio Cerci Is a Better Option Than Douglas Costa

Matteo BonettiContributor IAugust 20, 2014

TURIN, ITALY - JANUARY 26:  Alessio Cerci of Torino FC looks on during the Serie A match between Torino FC and Atalanta BC at Stadio Olimpico di Torino on January 26, 2014 in Turin, Italy.  (Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images)
Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images

Both Alessio Cerci and Douglas Costa have been linked to Milan in recent weeks as the club looks to land one final gem before the summer transfer window comes to a close.

The battle between Atletico Madrid and Milan for the services of the Italian international have been heating up, as Cerci himself denied sending a tweet out from his official Twitter page that said he was joining Atleti, telling Gazzetta Dello Sport (via the Press Association and the Guardian).

Italian outlet Gazzetta's latest report on the matter states that Milan increased their bid from €12 million to €13 million for Cerci, but Torino president Urbano Cairo also wants a youngster from the Rossoneri youth academy.

Cerci could be the ideal player for Filippo Inzaghi's new 4-3-3 system, a versatile attacker who is just as adept on the wing as he is in his new role as a second striker, a position he took up with Torino alongside Ciro Immobile in a 3-5-2 formation.

Before joining Torino, Cerci was seen as an underachiever in Serie A. A player with an incredible skill set who was never truly able to shine on a continuous basis. 

Now that he's finally realized his potential, Cerci is a low-risk signing who has played his entire career in Serie A and is used to the intricate style of the league.

On the other hand, Costa recently revealed to Gazzetta dello Sport (h/t Football Italia) it would be a dream to join Milan, the same place where his idol Ronaldinho once graced the field. Costa is a diminutive playmaker who has played for Shakhtar Donetsk for the past five seasons before plying his trade with Gremio.

Douglas Costa with Shakhtar Donetsk
Douglas Costa with Shakhtar DonetskDavid Ramos/Getty Images

The 23-year-old Brazilian still hasn't played in a top European league and is a costlier addition than Cerci, apart from also being a higher risk. 

Beyond that, one of Milan's main problems last season was the lack of a consistent goalscorer up front. Cerci has evolved into a much more prolific goalscorer since switching positions, having netted 13 times last season for Torino. 

The Italian international has a fantastic left foot and is also a fine crosser of the ball. He could link up well with the other attackers Milan have at their disposition.

Costa brings a different set of skills than Cerci as he's always looking to bring flair into any movement. If Milan really want a player like that, they could just re-sign Adel Taarabt for a fraction of the price from Queens Park Rangers, as he's proven to be a great fit for Serie A and Milan.

Taarabt quickly became a fan favorite and would cost Milan €20 million less. For a club that needs depth in all areas and is still missing a quality defender, overspending for yet another attacking wide player seems irresponsible and unnecessary.