Fiorentina were one of the most disappointing teams in the 2018-19 Serie A season. Despite having a talented squad that could have challenged for a European spot, the Viola side ended the campaign near the relegation zone and quite far from what they were looking to achieve. But things might be different during the upcoming season.
Vincenzo Montella wanted to upgrade his squad on both sides of the ball ahead of the 2019/20 season. And with the league campaign set to begin this weekend, it’s safe to say Fiorentina have accomplished that. We only need to take a look at their transfer activity to realize they can be a much better side this time around.
What has been Fiorentina’s transfer activity during the summer?
Fiorentina lost Vitor Hugo, Christian Norgaard and Riccardo Saponara during the summer transfer window, but they have strengthened their side considerably. Left-back Aleksa Terzic and right-back Pol Lirola should bolster the defence, while centre-back Riccardo Baroni could be an interesting prospect.
Milan Badelj and Erick Pulgar look like interesting additions in midfield, as both represent a clear upgrade over Norgaard. The same happens with Kevin-Prince Boateng in comparison to Sapponara. Plus, they acquired veteran winger Franck Ribery on a free transfer from Bayern Munich.
Ribery and Pulgar are the ones to watch here. While the former Bayern star will give Fiorentina a much needed “go to” player on the attacking end, Pulgar chose to join the Artemio Franchi side despite having interest from sides such as Inter Milan, AS Roma, and others. The Chile international is coming off a strong performance in the 2019 Copa America, and he has the potential to become one of the best central midfielders in the Serie A if he continues to progress as he has done it in the past 12 months.
Fiorentina won’t stop making moves in the market, though. They still need to upgrade their attack, and have been heavily linked with names such as Fernando Llorente and Nikola Kalinic. In fact, the latter is close to complete a switch from Atletico Madrid. Considering Giovanni Simeone is Fiorentina’s lone proven attacking threat, adding another player is a must for Montella.
So… how could Fiorentina line up in the first game of the 2019-20 Serie A season?
Fiorentina’s starting XI for the season opener could look something like this:
Bartlomiej Dragowski; Pol Lirola, Nikola Milenkovic, German Pezzella, Cristiano Biraghi; Milan Badelj, Marco Benassi, Erick Pulgar; Federico Chiesa, Giovanni Simeone, Franck Ribery.
That’s an impressive starting XI. And one that should look as a reliable UEFA Europa League contender if things go their way across the upcoming campaign. Can they deliver and respond to the expectations on their shoulders?
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