Welcome to the latest update (winter break) which I will keep brief of the Viola Story, if you have followed the story you will know that I have rebuilt the squad by bringing more Italian players in to the first team squad. Just as the transfer window was about to close we suffered injuries to both Aquilani and Badelj which left us short in the midfield area, a quick look at the transfer list I noticed Arsenal had listed Mohamed Elneny for £4m. I decided to bring him to Florence, a move which as to put it mildly been nothing short of fantastico. Elneny is the first name on the team sheet game after game. He has become the ‘Enforcer in Florence’ protecting our back four and spearheading our attacking transitions. Its early days yet in his Fiorentina career but he may just be the jewel in the crown for £4m.
We have had a very good start to the season, losing only 1 game the opener against Sampdoria. The highlights being the 4-0 win against Juventus and the 3-0 win against Internazionale. Leading the table by 5 points at the winter break has us dreaming of the title but from past experience we know we have a lot of work to do before the end of the season. A 16 game unbeaten run is bound to come to an end now I have mentioned it but I feel Fiorentina are now well on the way to be considered title contenders. What is standing out for me is the professionalism of the first team squad, I think this group of players are a pleasure to work with.
A poor showing from us in a tough group, we did get a point from Barcelona but we suffered 2 heavy defeats against Manchester City. We did do the double over Monaco which gave us third spot and a place in the Europa League 1st knockout round. I might be being hard on us given the tough draw but I want us to be at the next level.
Europa League Draw
We have drawn Braga in the first knockout round, the board have said they expect us to reach the 2nd round.
AC Milan full back Mattia de Sciglio will join us in January, Mattia will bring with him a flexibility in playing on either side of our defence and quality to our first team squad. Mario Gomez is coming up to his last 6 months on loan at Besiktas after a 2 year loan which was agreed before I took over the club. We are fully covered in all areas of the coaching team were we are delivering specialised training at a very high level which is bearing fruits on the pitch. We start the defence of the Coppa Italia in January and will be doing all we can to retain the trophy.
Thanks for reading the latest update, our end of season review should be posted next weekend so until then arriverderci.