Here we are in early July and the transfer market is heating up. Contracts are being signed, rumors are being talked about, and preseason training has started. Lets take a look at some early transfer market storylines.
1) Milan Keep On Spending
No team has been more active this summer than Milan. They’ve signed 7 new players already! Lets be honest, Milan needed a significant overhaul of their roster. They needed to have a mercato like this. The Rossoneri have completely transformed their defense by signing Mateo Musacchio, Andrea Conti, and Ricardo Rodriguez. Those three players, along with Alessio Romagnoli gives Milan a formidable defense. Franck Kessie figures to make an impact this season, but this signing also has more of an eye for the future. Andre Silva could be Milan’s number one striker, barring another signing (Aubameyang and/or Kalinic). Calhanoglu should be exciting to watch this season and to see how many goals he can score on free kicks. Lazio’s Lucas Biglia could be on his way as Milan’s next signing. It remains to be seen how all these signings will impact Milan in the standings, but it certainly has Milan fans talking and excited.
2) Roma In Dump Mode
Monchi came in as Roma’s new sporting director with a lot of fanfare. Roma fans were excited to see what this “transfer wizard” could do. Monchi declared that Roma are not a “supermarket”. As it turns out, they’ve been open for business. Mohamed Salah was the first to go, as he was sold to Liverpool for €42 million, and the deal could reach as much as €50 million. The next star to leave was Doumbia, who joined Sporting on loan. Just joking, Doumbia is not a star player, but he did leave again. Roma did sell Leandro Paredes to Zenit and recently just sold Antonio Rudiger to Chelsea for €35 million. Roma fans are sitting at the edge of their seat refreshing their Twitter feed just hoping they don’t sell anymore of their star players. There has been talk in the Italian media about Inter strongly pursuing Radja Nainggolan. Kostas Manolas’ agent has also hinted at a possible exit, although with Rudiger gone, Roma may want to keep the Greek international. It is a bit surprising that Roma are somewhat tearing apart a team that just finished in second place. Monchi may be thinking that Juve will be very strong again this season and he wants to put together a team that will be far more competitive 2-3 seasons from now, when Juventus will be undergoing a transition period.
Roma have made some additions, so it hasn’t been all dump mode. They’ve added Lorenzo Pellegrini, which I believe will turn out to be a great signing. Roma have also signed a veteran midfielder in Maxime Gonalons, and two defenders: Rick Karsdorp and Hector Moreno.
3) Napoli Quietly Having a Strong Mercato
You may be reading this and saying, “how are Napoli having a strong mercato when they’ve only signed Adam Ounas and Mario Rui”? I will tell you how. We just talked about Roma selling some of their key players and rumors of more sales on the horizon. Napoli have kept all their star players and you don’t even hear any rumors linking them to other clubs. Back in June, Lorenzo Insigne and Koulibaly were linked to Chelsea. De Laurentiis did not even entertain it. Mertens is coming off a career season, you know he generated interest from other clubs. Sometimes, just keeping your star players is enough to say you have had a great mercato. Napoli have signed Adam Ounas, a promising offensive player, that I’m sure Maurizio Sarri can turn into something special. Mario Rui will help improve Napoli’s fullback position and he knows Sarri’s style of football from their days together at Empoli.
De Laurentiis has hinted at the fact that Napoli could still sign a player that the media are not even talking about and are not linking him to Napoli. No one knows who De Laurentiis is talking about, but it has peaked the curiosity of Napoli fans.
4) Verona Generating Some Excitement
Verona will return to Serie A this upcoming season and their fans are excited. Verona have made some veteran signings: Alessio Cerci and Antonio Cassano. Some of you may be reading this and saying Cassano is old and washed up. Regardless, it still is Fantantonio and he creates a certain amount of buzz and excitement. The signing of Cassano will reunite him with Giampaolo Pazzini. The two played together at Sampdoria. Antonio Cassano has always been regarded as a player that never quite gave his all and didn’t care as much. I do believe that Cassano has something to prove this time and wants to go out on his own terms. He has talked about how he is in some of the best shape of his life and will be ready for this upcoming season. Alessio Cerci turned down the opportunity to return to Torino, where he had one of the best times of his career. Instead, Cerci decided to join Verona. Cerci will be 30 years old when the season starts, but still has plenty left in the tank. Cassano-Pazzini-Cerci playing together a couple of years ago would have been something special, but still in 2017 there is a sense of excitement to watch them play together.
5) Sleeping Giants
Juventus have been quiet this summer. Sometimes it is best not to wake a sleeping giant. However, that sleeping giant might be waking up soon. Patrik Schick took his medical with Juventus a few weeks ago, but still no official announcement yet. Regardless, the promising Sampdoria star is set to sign with the Bianconeri. Juventus have been linked to Bayern Munich’s Douglas Costa for some time now, and it appears that a deal is finally getting close. Even Bayern Munich’s Rummenigge has acknowledge that a deal with Juventus should be completed soon. With Douglas Costa incoming, Juventus are still interested in signing Fiorentina’s Federico Bernardeschi. Traditionally, Fiorentina does not like selling their star players to Juventus. Given the uneasy times at Fiorentina; the club being put up for sale, fans unhappy with the management, these are not normal times and it could pave the way for them to be willing to sell to Juventus. The Bianconeri do face competition for Bernardeschi from within Italy (Inter) and abroad in the Premier League. Considering Juventus have done nothing so far, they might just be waking up and looking to put their stamp on this transfer market.