If you ended up here and are older than 25 (well, maybe even if you are younger than that…), chances are you owned a football sticker album at least once as a kid. Transfer market sessions are pretty much like that: A stickers swapping exercise. Players come and go. “Got, got, need.”
The Cult of Calcio’s Stickers Swapping column brings you the best of the “calciomercato” trends and rumors, looking at who’s set to close the next big deal and who has already done it…
The January transfer market window is officially closed and the Serie A has seen its usual loan deals going through. It’s been a pretty interesting month for the Italian clubs so let’s take a deeper look into the business every side has undergone, and what do we make out of their actions on the market.
IN: Duvan Zapata (CF), Bosko Sutalo (CB), Lennart Czyborra (LB), Mattia Caldara (CB), Raoul Bellanova (RB), Adrien Tameze (DM)
OUT: Dejan Kulusevski (RW), Andrea Masiello (CB), Roger Ibanez (CB), Luca Vido (CF), Musa Barrow (CF), Mbaye Seck (LB), Fabio Eguelfi (LB), Alessandro Eleuteri (RM), Alessandro Santopadre (GK), Eyob Zambataro (LB), Gaetano Monachello (CF), Stefano Mazzini (GK), Emmanuel Latte Lath (RW)
Transfer Record: +16M Euro
Atalanta have been one of the busy sides in the transfer market, loaning out a considerable number of players but also bringing in some notable names. No key player left the Bergamaschi, which on the other hand managed to secure the services of highly-rated Duvan Zapata for the nifty fee of 12m Euro – making his loan deal from Sampdoria permanent. Mattia Caldara could also bring a plus to the La Dea defense. Cashing in on Dejan Kulusevski (35m Euro) helped them balance their accounts and finish a profitable transfer window.
Rating: 7,5 / 10
IN: Emanuel Vignato (RW), Sebastian Breza (GK), Musa Barrow (CF)
OUT: Saphir Taider (CM), Caio Vinicius Pirana (GK), Hamza El Kaouakibi (RB), Nehuen Paz (CB), Bleren Dzemaili (CM), Mattia Destro (CF), Juan Manuel Valencia (AM), Emanuel Vignato (RW)
Transfer Record: – 2M Euro
Like Atalanta, Bologna also loaned out a considerable number of players shifting some dead wood to free up their squad and balance their checkbook. In the signings department, we can note the arrival of Musa Barrow on loan from Atalanta: He could be a good option upfront for the Rossoblu. Sinisa Mihajlovic and his men are sitting in a comfortable 9th place and by the looks of their business in the market, it would seem they are happy with that. Maybe an extra effort in the market could have taken them closer to the European spots.
Rating: 5 / 10
IN: Simon Skrabb (CF), Birkir Bjarnason (CM)
OUT: Luca Tremolada (AM), Felipe Curcio (LB), Leonardo Morosini (AM)
Transfer Record: – 2.8M Euro
It’s been a quiet month at the Mario Rigamonti Stadium, with just two players coming in and three leaving the club. With a “grand” total of 2.80m Euro spent, it looks like the Brescia bosses have almost given up the fight to stay in the top tier of Italian football. With only SPAL beneath them in the table, maybe this would have been a good moment to try and save their season.
Rating: 3 / 10
IN: Gaston Pereiro (AM), Alberto Paloschi (CF)
OUT: Kwang-song Han (CF), Alessandro Deiola (CM), Lucas Castro (CM), Simone Pinna (LB), Luca Crosta (GK), Simone Aresti (GK), Filip Bradaric (DM), Alberto Cerri (CF)
Transfer Record: +1.5M Euro
Cagliari are one of the league’s nice surprises with an excellent start to the season. They are slowly starting to decline but still hold reasonable chances for a European spot finish. Alberto Paloschi and Gaston Pereiro are their only signings but could both turn up to be useful to Roland Maran’s side.
Rating: 6 / 10
IN: Sofyan Amrabat (CM), Patrick Cutrone (CF), Igor (CB), Alfred Duncan (CM), Christian Kouame (CF), Kevin Agudelo (CM)
OUT: Pedro (CF), Gilberto (RB), Kevin-Prince Boateng (CF), Jacob Rasmussen (CB), Szymon Zurkowski (CM), Valentin Eysseric (AM), Sebastian Cristoforo (CM), Sofyan Amrabat (CM), Tofol Montiel (AM), Michele Cerofolini (GK), Bryan Dabo (CM), Luca Ranieri (LB), Pierluigi Pinto (CB), Mattia Trovato (RW)
Transfer Record: -23.4M Euro
One of the most active teams, Fiorentina strengthened their squad in all departments while also loaning out a big number of players. They are slowly climbing up the table towards the places they are more used to, and with exciting names like Patrick Cutrone or Sofyan Amrabat La Viola could well be heading in the right direction and saving a season which seemed doomed.
Rating: 7,5 / 10
IN: Andrea Masiello (CB), Sebastian Eriksson (CM), Mattia Perin (GK), Adama Soumaoro (CB), Mattia Destro (CF), Iago Falque (RW), Vittorio Parigini (RW), Valon Behrami (DM)
OUT: Sandro (DM), Stephane Omeonga (CM), Jawad El Yamiq (CB), Antonio Candela (RB), Raul Asencio (CF), Riccardo Saponara (AM), Kevin Agudelo (CM), Federico Valietti (RB), Andras Schafer (RM), Sinan Gumus (RW), Christian Kouame (CF), Vittorio Parigini (RW), Nicola Dalmonte (CF)
Transfer Record: – 2.5M Euro
Genoa are one of the teams in trouble. They are currently in the relegation zone and have spent a good part of the season at the bottom of the table. Coach Thiago Motta wasn’t a successful experiment, and his sacking was more than necessary. Current manager Davide Nicola has made it clear from the start that he will work with players he knows and took action this winter bringing in a lot of players – while letting go even more in a complete squad overhaul. It’s difficult to say whether this will work and the manager will have the time to integrate all the new signings, but something had to be done. On the plus side, the whole action didn’t dig deep into Genoa’s pockets with a deficit of just 2.55m euros.
Rating: 7 / 10
IN: Mariusz Stepinski (CF), Sofyan Amrabat (CM), Fabio Borini (LW), Amir Rrahmani (CB), Federico Dimarco (LB), Matteo Lovato (CB), Valentin Eysseric (AM)
OUT: Sofyan Amrabat (CM), Amir Rrahmani (CB), Lubomir Trupta (CF), Daniel Bessa (CM), Wesley (RB), Luigi Vitale (LB), Liam Henderson (CM), Karim Laribi (AM), Andrea Badan (LB), Abdoulaye Traore (LW), Alberto Fiumicetti (LW), Joseph Ekuban (CF), Alessandro Crescenzi (LB), Antonio Di Gaudio (LW)
Transfer Record: +25M Euro
Verona are having a good season, sitting 11th in the table and with the possibility of climbing up to the 6th place if they win their postponed match against Lazio. The Gialloblu have also done some great business this transfer window. Some good loan moves and the selling of Sofyan Amrabat to Fiorentina for a quick profit of 16.5m euros make them one of the winners of this winter’s session.
Rating: 8 / 10
IN: Ashley Young (LM), Victor Moses (RM), Christian Eriksen (AM)
OUT: Gabriel Barbosa (CF), Matteo Politano (RW), Valention Lazaro (RM), Lorenzo Gavioli (CM), Marco PompEtti (DM), Federico Dimarco (LB), Ionut Radu (GK), Samuele Longo (CF)
Transfer Record: -50k Euro
Inter started the season great and Antonio Conte seemed to be on another title-winning season. But somewhere along the way, things started to crumble, and Conte was relying on the winter transfer window to plug in the holes. After being linked with a series of names, Inter managed to snatch up some of their top targets. Ashley Young, Victor Moses, and Christian Eriksen were the Nerazzurri signings, all former Premier League players with a considerable amount of top football experience. Christian Eriksen is one (if not THE) most exciting player to join the Serie A this transfer window, and at a 20M Euro price, he can turn out to be one of the biggest bargains. An excellent playmaker with an eye for goal, the Dane was itching to get away from Tottenham, where he spent his last six and a half years, and now under Conte’s management can reclaim his spot as one of the world’s best.
Rating: 8 / 10
IN: Dejan Kulusevski (RW)
OUT: Emre Can (DM), Mario Mandzukic (CF), Mattia Perin (GK), Dejan Kulusevski (RW), Marko Pjaka (LW)
Transfer Record: -34M Euro
Juventus were already leading the pack coming into the transfer window so not much had to be done. First in the league and with good back-ups for most positions, Juve parted ways with some players who weren’t getting much playing time and brought in one of the league’s most exciting youngsters, Dejan Kulusevski (who will join the side next summer). All in all, very correct business done by La Vecchia Signora.
Rating: 8,5 / 10
IN: Biagio Morrone (DM), Emanuele Cicerelli (LW)
OUT: Valon Berisha (CM), Riza Durmisi (LB), Tiago Casasola (RB), Emanuele Cicerelli (LW), Biagio Morrone (DM), Marius Adamonis (GK)
Transfer Record: 0
Lazio have been impressive so far and if they win against Verona they can overtake Inter and reach second place, just two points behind leaders Juventus. The Biancocelesti have been so good, that the first remarkable feat was not losing any of their important players this window. Coach Simone Inzaghi managed to create a great squad that plays an impressive brand of attacking football. Ciro Immobile is Europe’s best striker this season and Luis Alberto, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, Angel Correa or Felipe Caicedo have also been superb until now. The only problem is that the squad lacks substitutes. If they choose to go all the way and challenge Juventus for the title, it’s very possible they will feel fatigued when reaching the later stages of the season.
Rating: 4 / 10
IN: Alessandro Deiola (CM), Nehuen Paz (CB), Antonin Barak (CM), Riccardo Saponara (AM), Giulio Donati (RB)
OUT: Andrea Tabanelli (CM), Joakim Milli (GK), Luka Dumancic (LB), Radoslav Tsonev (CM), Andrea La Mantia (CF), Marco Bleve (GK), Simone Lo Faso (SS), Riccardo Fiamozzi (RB), Edgaras Dubickas (CF), Antonino Gallo (LB), Davide Riccardi (CB), Romario Benzar (RB)
Transfer Record: +250k Euro
Lecce are just above the relegation zone and things are stressful up at the Stadio Via del Mare Stadium. The Salentini hope to save their season with a series of loan moves. They chose to let go of many players who weren’t helping the team that much while bringing in another group with a little bit more experience in the top tier of Italian football.
Rating: 5 / 10
IN: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (CF), Simon Kjaer (CB), Asmir Begovic (GK), Alexis Saelemaekers (RM)
OUT: Krzysztof Piatek (CF), Gustavo Gomez (CB), Ricardo Rodriguez (LB), Pepe Reina (GK), Fabio Borini (LW), Mattia Caldara (CB), Riccardo Forte (LW), Suso (RW)
Transfer Record: + 29M Euro
Milan’s transfer window has gravitated around one move: Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s return. This move boosted Stefano Pioli’s men and ever since the big Swede rejoined the Rossoneri things have been going great. But his move came with a price, the departure of Krzysztof Piatek. It is rumored that Ibrahimovic prefers playing alongside Rafael Leao as the young Portuguese striker complements his style better. With a series of other players leaving or joining the club on loan, Milan find themselves with + 29M Euro in their accounts and an attacking line that seems to function for the first time this season. The interesting part will be to see for how long and if these moves won’t come and bite them from the back.
Rating: 7 / 10
IN: Stanislav Lobotka (DM), Diego Demme (CM), Andrea Petagna (CF), Amir Rrahmani (CB), Matteo Politano (RW)
OUT: Amir Rrahmani (CB), Lorenzo Tonelli (CB), Amato Ciciretti (RW), Mario Prezioso (CM), Luigi D’Ignazio (LB), Raffaele Russo (LW), Andrea Petagna (CF), Giuseppe Esposito (CB), Gennaro Tutino (LW), Gianluca Gaetano (AM), Francesco Mezzoni (RB), Franco Ferrari (CF)
Transfer Record: – 65.5M Euro
Napoli are surprisingly the top spenders of this transfer window, with President Aurelio de Laureniis splashing the cash on several good signings. First of all, Napoli cemented their center midfield with the likes of Stanislav Lobotka and Diego Demme joining the team. Also, the signings of Andrea Petagna, SPAL’s top scorer and Amir Rrahmani in defense show that they are thinking forward to the next year – as both players were loaned back to the clubs they were brought in from for the rest of the season. Matteo Politano on loan from Inter is another very good move and fans at the San Paolo may start to hope in a revamp of the current season.
Rating: 9 / 10
IN: Gaston Brugman (DM), Gianluca Caprari (SS), Dejan Kulusevski (RW), Ionut Radu (GK), Jasmin Kurtic (CM), Eric Lanini (CF), Muhamed Tehe Olawale (SS), Vasco Regini
OUT: Metteo Luigi Brunori (CF), Cristian Cauz (LB), Eric Lanini (CF), Luca Zamparo (CF), Alessio Da Cruz (LW), Jacopo Dezi (CM), Emerson Espinoza (DM), Riccardo Santovito (LB), Andrea Dini (GK), Jose Machin (CM), Walid Cheddira (CF), Simone Madonna (CM), Francesco Golfo (LW), Fabrizio Alastra (GK), Alessandro Minelli (CB), Gianni Munari (CM)
Transfer Record: – 5M Euro
As usual, Parma have loaned out a bunch of players – that’s no surprise – but also made a few signings which may very well contribute to their already positive season. Gianluca Caprari, Jasmin Kurtic, Gaston Burgman, Ionut Radu all seem fit for a shot at the first team, or at least a place on the bench. Furthermore, keeping hold of Dejan Kulusevski until the end of the season was another remarkable achievement.
Rating: 7 / 10
IN: Gonzalo Villar (CM), Carles Perez (RW), Roger Ibanez (CB)
OUT: Umar Sadiq (CF), Zan Celar (CF), Alessandro Florenzi (RB), Moustapha Seck (LB), Mirko Antonucci (RW), Steven Nzonzi (DM)
Transfer Record: -3.3M Euro
The capital city hasn’t seen a lot of action in this window. As in their rivals Lazio’s case, the Giallorossi didn’t close any important deal. The only surprise was the departure of captain Alessandro Florenzi on loan to Valencia until the end of the season. Still, with a fairly decent season up until now, it’s very likely we will see Roma playing some European football next season.
Rating: 3,5 / 10
IN: Jeison Murillo (CB), Lorenzo Tonelli (CB), Maya Yoshida (CB), Antonino La Gumina (CF), Andrea Bertolacci (CM)
OUT: Duvan Zapata (CF), Gianluca Caprari (SS), Dawid Kownacki (CF), Leonardo Benedetti (CM), Leonardo Capezzi (DM), Carlo Romei (RB), Jeison Murillo (CB), Giacomo Vrioni (CF), Vasco Regini (CB)
Transfer Record: +10M Euro
With one of the worst attacks in the league, Sampdoria surprisingly chose to bolster their defense instead of bringing in some fresh blood to their sterile front line. Jeison Murillo, Maya Yoshida, and Lorenzo Tonelli will play for the rest of the season at the Luigi Ferraris Stadium. Antonio La Gumina has joined from Empoli on loan, but it’s difficult to imagine how he could improve the Doria’s scoring record alone.
Rating: 5 / 10
IN: Lukas Haraslin (LW)
OUT: Andrea Cisco (LW), Leonardo Serbicola (LB), Luca Mazzitelli (CM), Alfred Duncan (CM), Alessandro Carrozza (LW)
Transfer Record: 0
It looks like Sassuolo are satisfied with their current squad as they chose to bring in only one player, Slovakian Lukas Haraslin from Polish side Lechnia Gdansk. They didn’t cash in on anybody either, rather choosing to let a few players out on loan. It looks like it’s going to be another mid-table finish for the Neroverdi.
Rating: 4 / 10
IN: Ervin Zukanovic (CB), Bryan Dabo (CM), Andrea Petagna (CF), Alberto Cerri (CF), Kevin Bonifazi (CB), Lucas Castro (CM)
OUT: Andrea Petagna (CF), Gabriele Moncini (CF), Igor (CB), Jasmin Kurtic (CM), Shaka Mawuli (CM), Everton Luiz (DM), Alberto Paloschi (CF), Marko Jankovic (RW)
Transfer Record: +21.5M Euro
Even though they sit bottom of the table, SPAL didn’t spend one dime in this transfer window. Instead, they picked up a pretty hefty sum from selling Andrea Petagna and from a few other lucrative loan deals. It would seem the management at the Paolo Mazza Stadium is at peace with this year’s outcome and are rather racking up some money for the season to come.
Rating: 5 / 10
IN: No new arrivals
OUT: Alessandro Buongiorno (CB), Iago Falque (RW), Kevin Bonifazi (CB), Andrea Zaccagno (GK), Simone Ambrogio (CB), Vittorio Parigini (RW)
Transfer Record: 0
Not much can be said about Torino’s transfer window. With no new signings and a series of young or unused players loaned out, the Toro have been pretty boring to watch this month.
Rating: 2 / 10
IN: Marvin Zeegelaar (LB), Sebastian Prodl (CB)
OUT: Ignacio Pussetto (RW), Ewandro Costa (RW), Nicholas Opuku (CB), Mamadou Coulibaly (CM), Svante Ingelsson (RM), Francisco Sierralta (CB), Antonin Barak (CM), Felipe Vizeu (CF)
Transfer Record: + 6M Euro
Long gone are the days of Antonio Di Natale and his exciting performances that used to put Udinese in the top half of the Serie A table. For the past seasons, the Friulani have been used to barely escape relegation and to assemble some squads that just managed to keep them up in the top tier. This winter’s transfer window was no different than that trend. With just Marvin Zeegelaar and Sebastian Prodl joining the squad, it looks like the rest of the season is going to be another snooze-fest for Udine.
Rating: 4 / 10