January is coming and it’s time Italy’s biggest clubs are thinking about strengthening their ranks ahead of the second half of the season. Here is a round up of who is linked with who…
Milan could do with a few stocking fillers this year as their young and inexperienced team have struggled in the first half of the season. Santos are looking to take Brazilian Robinho home and if they do, Allegri may have some cash to throw around. Didier Drogba is angling for a move back to Europe and a player of his experience could fit well, but it is the midfield and defence that more urgently require attention. Portuguese centre-back Rolando is a target for the Rossonieri as is Brazilian Dede, but the prohibitive price tags on both will stand in the way. Wesley Sneijder has been linked with a cross-town transfer, but it’s hard to see the talismanic Dutchman in red and black. Of course Mario Balotelli is again linked with the club as are his team mates Tevz and Dzeko members of Manchester City’s misfiring attackers who are said to be looking for a fresh start. There is some talk of Kaká heading to Feverbace but wouldn’t a Christ like return of the Brazilian to the San Siro be just the ticket?
Didier Drogba is the latest big name to be linked with the Turin club as is Mario Balotelli. No surprise there, Juve may be looking for another proven striker to solidify their position in the league next year. But slightly unexpected is their interest in bringing Arsenal’s protégé Theo Walcot to Serie A. He could be a very shrewd buy as he has pace to burn and could suit Italian football very well and his contract clubs with Arsenal have stalled, again. Marco Veratti is a player Juventus wanted last year but lost out to PSG, they could still be in the hunt for his signature despite Pogba’s satisfactory progress.
If Sneijder does choose to leave Inter will have to replace him and names that have been linked with the blue and black of Inter is none other than Chelsea’s Frank Lampard who, although a legend at Stamford Bridge is too old for the Londoners’ new policy of not buying over the hill players. But as we all know he is a game-changing talent and could be a big hit in Milan. They may have to fight Tottenham over €9.2m-rated Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Patrick Herrmann, 21.
Napoli have been linked with Swansea striker Miguel Perez Cuesta, known as Michu, who has been impressing for the Welsh club this season. Another striker in their sites is Ivorian Seydou Doumbia, who plays for CSKA Moscow. That would likely depend on whether or not they can hold on to Hamsik and Cavani who are linked with Chelsea and Arsenal respectively. Napoli also covet Vito Manonne, Arsenal’s long-time goalkeeping project, although he’s just signed a new contract, the London club have been rumoured to be bringing in José “Pepe” Reina, who apparently is so deperate to leave Anfield he’ll take a paycut to do it.
Lazio also want the Ivorian from CSKA Moscow and if they don’t bag him, they’ll go rooting in bargain basement Sassuolo for Domenico Berardi an Italian striker who has been apparently linked with every major club after scoring three goals in 10 games for the Serie B side. Either that or his agent is doing a very fine job indeed.
Roma have been very active on the transfer market recently and they show no signs of slowing down with links to Newcastle’s left back Danny Simpson of all people. He’s a good prospect, but it’s a major cultural shift from the North of England to Rome, one that’s been done before, with mixed results. There’s an Italian full-back at Newcastle too Davide Santon who Roma have pursued before and will again come January. Roma are keen too on Athletic Bilbao's Fernando Amorebieta, 27,
The Tuscan club will be looking to spend seeing as they were disappointed in the pre season shopping period. Manchester United’s Mexican sharp shooter Javier Hernandez is wanted by Fiorentina and should they land his signature would represent a major coup for them. But even if ‘Chicharito’ is unhappy with the mount of starts he’s got this season, Ferguson knows quality and he’ll be reluctant to see him go.
Written by Hugo McCafferty