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Pioggia Viola : AFC Fiorentina

Started on 20 November 2019 by OohAhCantona
Latest Reply on 26 September 2020 by OohAhCantona
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FIORENTINA PRIMAVERA BENEFITS FROM SUMMER TRANSFERS

A lack of senior squad movement was mostly about a lack of funds, Fiorentina had £14.5M available to spend but less than £1M in available salary. Montella would need to prove himself before being handed more money, but that didn’t mean there weren’t any transfers to make.

Senior / Major Transfers (Out)
None

Senior Transfers (In)
None

Final Transfer List (Impact Signings)
Daniel Maldini (LW, Milan) £5.5M
Degnand Wilfried Gnonto (CF, Inter) £2.5M

Fiorentina is going to have to use everything it can to win, and they have the advantage of being in a good league with the ability to hand out playing time to younger players. Being able to start right away instead of sitting out a few years or going on loan has allowed Montella to recruit a few promising players. Even if they don’t start right away, there are plenty of opportunities to play with the current roster.


Maldini's time at AC Milan appears to be over, for now...

It looks like Fiorentina are preparing for the departure of Pedro and Franck Ribéry with the purchase of young players that should have a shot at the senior squad in a few years. The additional of Daniel Maldini, the legendary Paolo Maldini’s son, from Milan could prove to be a massive score. Reports are that Milan refused to remove a clause for 40% of his next sale profits, so even Milan know he’s headed for a spike in value.
I'm interested to see how Maldini develops. He obviously has some potential at the very minimum and Milan are accounting for that by placing a 40% next sale profit clause within the deal.
Maldini would never leave Milan, that should be hard coded into the game
2019-11-28 20:43#263338 Griffo : Maldini would never leave Milan, that should be hard coded into the game

I know, I was like "Third generation Maldini... should have been harder to pry away."

AUGUST : I VIOLA OPEN SEASON ON FIRE

Coppa Italia - TIM Cup (H) : Fiorentina 4 - Chievo Verona 0


Fiorentina opened up their competitive season with a bit of a warm up by facing Serie B side Chievo Verona in their first Coppa Italia game. The third round game would be easy on paper, but Vincenzo Montella would not have the luxury of shrugging this one off. The squad is clearly split in terms of mentality, so taking cup competitions seriously is going to go a long way to healing any divisions.

The pre-season and tactical approach paid off immediately as Fiorentina ripped Chievo Verona apart, a 2’ goal from Kevin Prince-Boateng put the hosts up almost immediately and they never looked back. For a team that looks unsettled going forward on paper it was good to see the offense clicking. Dalbert and Pedro formed a connection that would fuel a nightmare outing for Chievo Verona. Dalbert would have (2) key passes and (2) assists, both to Pedro, who would also contribute a key pass and chance created.

A 4-0 win and a ticket to the next round would be a great appetizer for the Serie A opener against Lecce.

Serie A (A) : Lecce 1 - Fiorentina 5


If Lecce watched the Coppa Italia game they would have had a good idea of what to expect, but they wouldn’t have been able to predict this kind of result. Fiorentina came out fast and ran over Lecce on their way to a big win, it’s hard to believe their offense would be a concern after these first two games.

Dalbert and Pedro would continue their run of incredible form, with Dalbert putting on an incredible performance. Dalbert would put up (3) key passes and (2) assists, Lecce had no answer for him, but he would lose the PoM award to Franck Ribéry as he looked to turn the clock back to 2010. A double and (2) key passes of his own would add to Lecce’s misery.


Pedro and Ribéry have started the season in great form.

After another easy win, 5-1 over Cagliari, Fiorentina would find themselves in 1st. On top of that Montella would look like a genius after playing his second choice squad against Cagliari in order to be rested against their game against Napoli at the start of September. Riccardo Sottil would land the PoM award with (2) goals and send fans into a buzz about his potential to replace Chiesa.

Things turned sour, and very public, when Nikola Milenković decided it was time for a new contract. Apparently Montella did not think someone signed through 2022 needed a new deal and Milenković took to social media along with his agent to voice his displeasure. While Montello stayed clear of the public spat, a number of players did not return the favor. Jacob Rasmussen, Riccardo Sottil, Dušan Vlahović, and Bartłomiej Drągowski sided with Milenković and called for a pay raise. Inside sources report that a meeting between the agitators and Montella resulted in all but only Drągowski changing their mind. Drągowski may be putting a target on his back as Montella has publicly discussed recalling Alban Lafont.
Tremendous start for Montella and company. The number of goals thus far is more than admirable. Hopefully the disagree between certain members of the squad doesn't cause too much disharmony.
Dominant!
Two great results to kick off the season. However, the number of issues around the squad is surely strating to become an issue

SEPTEMBER : ALL ROADS LEAD TO ROMA

Serie A (H) : Fiorentina 4 - Napoli 2


After beating up on some smaller teams it was finally time for Fiorentina and Vincenzo Montella to see how good they really were. Napoli would represent I Viola’s first real bump in the road, and they would certainly have their hands full on paper. Carlo Ancelotti would have a number of very good players at his disposal and Kalidou Koulibaly would anchor the best back line Fiorentina has faced.

Things started out poorly for Lazio and never really turned in their favor as Franck Ribéry looked dominant immediately, Giovanni Di Lorenzo was in for a long day on the left side of Fiorentina’s formation. Goals at 24’ and 45+1’ would see Fiorentina into the locker room with a 2-1 lead and a worried Ancelotti on the sidelines. Their lone goal of the first half would come off a blocked shot pinging around the box before Dries Mertens managed to direct it into the net.

Perhaps hosting turned the tide, Fiorentinas offense continued to fire on all cylinders as the Ribéry-Pedro assault continued. With (3) goals between them, and Ribéry now leading Serie A in scoring with (4), it almost didn’t matter that they looked vulnerable at the back. If Ribéry can continue to lead the league in average rating (9.30) and PoM it might not matter if they keep coughing up goals.

Serie A (A) : Parma 2 - Fiorentina 1


Away game after a big win? If anyone saw this as a trap game it was Montella, but it’s one thing to see a trap and another to avoid it. The season is young, so it’s hard to make out any patterns from their early results aside from the fact that Ribéry and Pedro have the skill to keep them scoring.

“I am concerned, we need to remain focused.” said Montella prior to the game “We won a big game, but now we have to play the rest.”

Parma’s use of a 4-1-2-3 was also a bit of a concern, as Assistant Coach Daniele Russo admitted in the build up. Fiorentina dominated this game on paper, but the stats don’t win games. Hernâni, the anchor man, did a great job of frustrating Fiorentina up the middle as Parma managed to funnel the ball out wide and force shots from bad angles at distance.

Bruno Alves would head in a corner early and Antonino Barillà would put a cap on his PoM performance to leave Montella fuming over a 2-0 deficit. Despite being roughly even on paper, things just weren’t going Fiorentina’s way and Parma had them on the ropes. Kevin Prince-Boateng would score late to make an embarrassing loss look better in the boxscore, but that couldn’t cover up the frustration on everyone’s face after the game.

Serie A (A) : Roma 1 - Fiorentina 1


A trip to Rome would not be Montella’s first choice after the deflating loss to Parma. Even a 1-0 win against SPAL would not make this game look easier, especially because Fiorentina really poured it on in the second half and still managed to walk away with a single goal. The silver lining of this fixture would be Roma’s place in the league table; 19th. A terrible start to the season might be an opening for Montella to get I Viola back on track.

This almost looked like a repeat of the SPAL game and Paulo Fonseca looked very concerned as Fiorentina controlled possession and rushed to double digit shots while Roma could only muster three, none of them troubling Drągowski. Federico Chiesa finally broke through in stoppage time and Roma were now in a 1-0 hole without looking like they cared to climb out.

Montella managed to keep Fiorentina’s focus coming out of the break and they continued to look like they had this game in hand, the next goal was bound to come as Roma sat back and let I Viola test Pau López in goal. All the good feelings rapidly dissipated when Allesandro Florenzi headed in a corner and put the hosts level. The look on Montella’s face could have split granite, and it never left his face as Fiorentina continued the puts shots on goal with nothing to show for it. Roma, floundering in the relegation zone, were more than happy to walk out of this game with a point.

“We should have won this game, but we were not good enough,” said Montella curtly “we let them have a chance and they made it count.”
A mixed month but the future is bright for I Viola.
Seeing Ribery at another team still seems weird to me haha
2019-12-29 00:28#264394 Griffo : Seeing Ribery at another team still seems weird to me haha

I know, every time I select him it feels wrong for some reason.

OCTOBER : INVINCIBLE!

Serie A (H) : Fiorentina 3 - Sampdoria 0


There must be something in the water in Florence, because Montella is heading for an incredibly brutal run of games with a growing list of injuries and suspensions. Pol Lirola would sit out the game due to accumulated yellow cards and make way for Lorenzo Venuti to man RB. His reign would be short and painful, setting in motion a positional crisis Montella will be lucky to get through.

Just 7’ into the game Venuti would pull up limp and crumple to the ground holding his calf. His removal would bring on a surprised Martín Cáceres who was already upset Venuti had been selected to start, but he didn’t fare much better. At 26’ Cáceres would be involved in a violent collision with Jakub Jankto, leaving both of them rolling on the pitch in pain. Jankto would rise, clearly unharmed, and Cáceres would need to be gingerly escorted from the pitch with what would later turn out to be broken ribs. Some finger pointing and aggressive gesticulating with the ref, along with some light shoving of Jankto, would not produce a card. Montella would send on Luca Ranieri to fill the air space voided by his two RB and pray for mercy.

As it turned out, Sampdoria would be the ones in need of mercy. Despite the mess Fiorentina came alive as Pedro and Franck Ribéry would score along with an own goal by Emil Audero to put the hosts up 3-0. Sampdoria never looked like a threat outside of the Cáceres-Jankto incident, they didn’t do any damage during the game but the injuries might have put Fiorentina in a tough spot going forward. Taking over 2nd place in Serie A did little to settle Montella’s mood.


Pedro continues scoring to keep Fiorentina afloat.

Serie A (A) : Torino 1 - Fiorentina 1


A trip to Turn was definitely not what Fiorentina needed after a long international break. Despite not playing that team from Turin, their fans were more than happy to turn out and remind the Fiorentina fans they aren’t welcome here. Luckily, a win over the Turin team they were playing was in the cards even though the international break left Montella with even less to work with.

With RB as thin as possible RW now sat on a razor’s edge with Frederico Chiesa recently recovering from a thigh injury suffered on Italy duty. Rachid Ghezzal, his primary backup, had already been ruled out for 3-6 weeks with an ankle injury suffered while playing for Algeria. To make things even worse Dalbert would be out on a suspension for accumulating yellow cards, at this rate Montella would need to put on his boots.

Just 13’ into the game Pedro, sometimes going as Santo Pedro among fans, did his thing and scored to give Fiorentina the lead. Things continued to look good for the visitors, controlling possession and rolling toward a solid shots, until Montelle went through the worst six minutes of the season. First Cristian Ansaldi ran through Marco Benassi and Pol Lirola like they were a wet tissue and let loose a shot from the far corner of the box that crossed Bartłomiej Drągowski and tucked into the far side netting. The nightmare came to a peak when Chiesa pulled up lame and crumpled to the pitch holding his calf before being helped off.

The 1-1 scoreline concealed Iago Falqué’s great game on the way to a PoM award as he pulled the strings for Torino. He provided the assist on Ansaldi’s goal and (4) key passes, the only way Fiorentina could slow his down was by kicking him… literally. I Viola would dominate in the foul department, registering (19) to help the entire back line leave this game with a yellow. Montella could only sit with fire in his eyes as the game wound down and he had to swallow another draw that should have been three point.

Serie A (H) : Fiorentina 2 - Inter 0


Perhaps a visit from league leading Inter was not the best thing for Fiorentina right now, especially after a road game in Turin. Chiesa’s injury would keep him out 2-3 weeks, leaving Montella with only Riccardo Sottil at RW and Valentin Eysseric as a last resort. Despite the laundry list of problems, Inter would walk out of Artemio Franchi wondering if they was something in the water.

The first half was all Fiorentina, boring and devoid of remarkable events but clearly in Fiorentina’s command. Inter managed only (2) shots before the half and none of them were on target. The most entertaining element of the first half was Antonio Conte, who exploded on his players and dwarfed Montella’s reactions to shots that were easily handled by Samir Handanovic. No doubt Conte’s version of the hair dryer was on order at halftime.

It wasn’t until 65’ that the stalemate would be broken, giving Stefan de Vrij the cherry on top of his horrible evening. On his way to a 5.9 rating he would be constantly haunted by Pedro, and lazily collecting the ball from Handanovic would blossom into a disaster. Pedro would snag the ball from him and quickly get off a long distance shot that would fly past an unprepared Handanovic for a 1-0 lead. De Vrij would be greeted by a shower of whistles from the visitor section, a short lecture from Handanovic, and a furious tirade from Conte.


Conte would put up more of a fight than his players.

Fiorentina would finally be able to hold a 1-0 advantage into stoppage time, and a late goal from Eysseric of a throw in would seal a 2-0 victory. The shock win would make it (5) matches unbeaten and see I Viola to 4th in Serie A only (4) points back of 1st place Inter.
Pedro is on FORM!
Pedro is on fire!

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