Saturday, August 28, 2010
Friday, August 27, 2010
With his transfer to Juventus officially completed, and a return to England very unlikely, Alberto Aquilani has finally shut the door on what can only be described as a disappointing Premier League career.
Aquilani joined Liverpool last season on a €20 million transfer from Roma following the departure of Xabi Alonso. Injuries plagued Aquilani as they have done his entire career, and he didn’t make his first start for the club until December 26th. Many quickly realized that Aquilani was not a substitute for Xabi Alonso, as they have distinctly different playing styles.
As the season progressed Il Principe was able to showcase some of his talents. He racked up three assists in a game against Burnley, and finished the season with six assists, however inconsistent playing time and a lack of fitness eventually led to Aquilani finishing the campaign with just two goals and six assists in 26 appearances for Liverpool.
Aquilani will likely never return to the Premier League. He has recently stated that he is at Juventus to stay, saying “England has been a very beautiful experience, but I am here (in Italy) to stay.” Aquilani believes that back home in Italy is the place where he will be able to get his career back on track, and get back into contention for the World Cup team (although he will be 30 by that time).
Aquilani’s transfer comes at a difficult time for Liverpool, as they have only taken one point from their first two games this season, with many Liverpool fans already realizing this might not be their year. Aquilani would not have saved this season by staying, but with Aquilani leaving and Javier Mascherano also on his way out, Liverpool’s quality in the midfield has been further depleted.
As a fan of Serie A I wished Alberto Aquilani the best of luck in the Premier League when he transferred. Although I am happy to see him back in Italy, I can’t say that I’m not disappointed that he didn’t make more of an impact in the English game. Liverpool fans will likely try and forget the Italian’s ill fated venture to England.
I know I will.
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Here are the rankings for the top ten clubs and players as of this moment.
Monday, August 23, 2010
Mario Balotelli has always had talent. As an AC Milan fan I have been witness to the flashes of brilliance that Balotelli provided Inter Milan during his playing time in Serie A. With his latest £24 million move to Manchester City, I believe that the young Italian can finally play up to his full potential now that he is away from the confines of his home.
Two things plagued Balotelli during his tenure in Italy: infrequent playing time and racial abuse. Super Mario frequently saw himself on the bench or out of the squad for much of last season’s remarkable Treble winning run. During his time at Inter, Balotelli saw a plethora of other players chosen over him in the starting eleven, whether it was Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Diego Milito, or Samuel Eto’o.
While these players are world class strikers, Balotelli at 20 years old is in his most impressionable and important stages of development as a player and a person. There is no way Super Mario would have been able to develop into the talent he is capable of by rotting on the bench in Milan.
Finally, escaping the well documented racial abuse that Balotelli endured during his time at Milan will do wonders for the youngster. Racist chants seemed to follow Balotelli wherever he went, with fans chanting things such as “a black Italian does not exist.” I believe Balotelli’s confidence and abilities can only improve as these racial issues subside.
Balotelli has already made an impact during his short time with City, as he scored the winning goal in his debut in the Europa League. If Super Mario puts in the effort, and is given a chance by Roberto Mancini, Manchester City might have just made the transfer of the season.