Tuesday, 28 August 2012

The Serie A Canada Watch List

This is a list I have compiled of a few players that should be on the watch list for all Calcio fans. They are either players on the brink of super stardom, or players whose performances will dictate whether or not their particular teams are able to achieve their goals this season.

Ciro Immobile
Lets get the obvious out of the way first. Ciro Immobile comes off his loan deal with Pescara which saw them promoted last year with a lot of hype. The Serie B's capocannoniere had 28 goals a year ago, and started his Serie A season on the right foot, no pun intended, with a goal in a 2-0 win for Genoa over Cagliari. Genoa believe in the 22 year old so much so that they have been looking to offload out of favour striker Alberto Gilardino.

Alberto Aquilani

Many questions have surrounded Alberto Aquilani upon joining Fiorentina this off season from Liverpool. Brought in to fill the hole left in the midfield by the departed Riccardo Montolivo, Aquilani answered those questions in his first Serie A match by providing a beautiful diagonal ball from the centre of the pitch all the way to the edge of the 18 yard box. Jovetic would finish the wonderful assist giving the Viola a much needed first win of the season.

Michael Bradley
Michael Bradley is on a quest to prove himself in the Serie A, and is being given the opportunity in the nation's capital. A successful season with Chievo caught the eye of the Romans, and he will be given every opportunity to continue making a name for himself. The American international has been given the role of holding the midfield alongside Daniele De Rossi. Bradley is a physical force in the centre of the pitch, but does not get enough credit for his creative abilities which he showed off on his assist of Nicolas Lopez' tying goal against Catania over the past weekend.


We all know of the departures at Udinese this summer, but who did they bring in? Well the player whom I think will play the biggest role in trying to replace all the departed is Brazilian attacking midfielder, Maicousel. Not much is known about him, but we didn't know much about Asamoah, Isla and Armero before they broke onto the scene with Udinese either. Maicousel made a beautiful run, and was sent in for his first Serie A goal in his first match against Fiorentina on Saturday, but the hope is he will be more of a creator than a scorer. He only had six goals in 56 appearances for Botafago in Brazil over the last two seasons, but Udinese are hoping his creative abilities will be able to keep them in the upper echelon of the Serie A.

Angelo Ogbonna

Torino have made some interesting moves this summer as they attempt to stay afloat in the Serie A. But the one player that is going to be integral to their season is their heart and soul on defense, Angelo Ogbonna. He is a product of the Torino youth system and has already made well over 100 appearances for the club on his way to becoming captain, and is the future of the Azzurri central defence. His performance this season will go a long way in keeping Torino in the Serie A, and also cementing his place in the national team.

Abel Hernandez

This next selection had a horrendous start to his Serie A season, but I believe it is about time Abel Hernandez starts to live up to the hype. Still only 22 years old, this will be Abel's fifth season with Palermo. He was virtually invisible for the men in pink in their 3-0 loss to Napoli, but he will be important to Palermo if they are to have any kind of success in the Serie A this season. I have opined that they could be a team fighting to stay in the top flight, and one of the keys to their season will be Abel Hernandez having a breakout season and doing what so many of us think he can accomplish. All the talent in the world yet he has only been able to show it in flashes to this point in his career.

Dorlan Pabon
Parma will have a difficult time fulfilling the void left by Sebastien Giovinco. But they have tried to fill that hole with young pacey forwards like Jonathan Biabiany and Dorlan Pabon. Although both of them were phased out by Juventus in the first match of the Serie A season, their pace still got them both into scoring positions a few times during the match, and it was certainly evident that these two have the pace to make some things on the counter attack this season for the Gialloblu.

Giampaolo Pazzini

Milan have had a roller coaster ride of an off season, and after a 1-0 loss to Sampdoria in their first match many questions surround the Rossoneri. Newly signed Giampaolo Pazzini is coming off the worst season of his career, but was overshadowed by Diego Milito at Inter. With Pato and now Robinho injured to start the season, Milan will be counting on Pazzini to poach some goals while the Brazilians watch from the stands.

Lorenzo Insigne
 Lorenzo Insigne has probably been the most hyped Italian youngster of them all. Marco Verratti would have given him competition for that title had he not left for Paris Saint-Germain, but that's another story for another day. Insigne will be given every opportunity to make Napoli fans forget about the departed Ezequiel Lavezzi. Lorenzo enjoyed an incredible preseason that only fuelled the hype machine surrounding the 21 year old. He started for Napoli in their 3-0 victory, but was unable to record any goals or assists. The expectations are very high for this young man, and it is rare to see an Italian at his age get a chance to start with one of the bigger teams. We will have to wait and see if he can live up to the lofty expectations set for him.

Alessandro Matri

Lastly, I am expecting to take some heat from all of you on this and I hope you do, because I truly believe in Alessandro Matri to be the man to score plenty of goals for Juventus. Your classic 'poacher' striker Matri is physical, strong, and has a knack for getting into the right places. Giovinco will be hurt for the next couple of weeks so I expect Matri to start alongside Vucinic, and make it hard for Massimo Carrera to keep him out of the first team once Giovinco is back healthy. Matri can win the Serie A golden boot, if given the chance...

These are my watch list players. Whose yours? Lets discuss....comment here or find me on twitter @DanRiccio23.

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