Hello and welcome to the next post in my attempt of the Great San Marino Challenge. As you saw in the last post, we scraped through the play-off’s to earn promotion to the Serie B! Just 1 division behind the Serie A and all its wealth and European opportunities. This post will cover the pre-season activities that the club underwent including transfers and friendlies.
Let’s begin with the season expectations and the money received through TV rights for the season:
So I was given £1m over the season for TV rights, more than we have ever received before. Also, my season expectations came and I was given a transfer budget of £87k, with about £9k in wages. In return the board wanted to avoid relegation, which should be a doable task.
Let’s look at who left the club in the transfer window:
So quite a lot of players left the club. I had to let Sereni leave as although he was my best GK, he was injured for too long and too much. All the others who got released were not Serie B level. Crivello and Casolla went back to Juventus and Cesena respectively as their co-ownership deals expired. I loaned out a San Marino DC, Biordi, and a San Marino ST, Selva. Del Sole left the club for £10k, again as he wasn’t Serie B level.
Now for the ins:
I brought in quite a few players, 4 free transfers and 8 loans. Here they are 1 by 1:
Armando Perna: DC (Free Transfer)
I signed experienced DC, Perna, as I felt I could use his ability in my defence. I don’t want to concede many goals so I am hoping that he can make many good tackles and blocks, to help my keeper out.
Tibor Cica: MC/ML/MR (Free Transfer)
I am really excited about Cica. I signed the versatile midfielder on a free on just £2k a week, and he should be a fantastic, key part in my midfield. The young Croatian is definitely a good Serie B player, and if he can reach his potential, he will definitely be joining us in the Serie A when we go up.
Mads Laudrup: MC (Free Transfer)
Another good midfielder signed on a free transfer. Mads is only 24 but is clearly a good Serie B player. Hopefully he and Cica can hold the middle of the park well and create chances for our forwards.
Edoardo Pazzagli: GK (£1.5k p/m Loan Fee / 50% of Wages — From AC Milan)
He’s not exactly up to Sereni standards but Pazzagli is a decent GK at this level. Hopefully he can provide a good service and keep out as many goals as he can.
Raffaele Schiavi: DC/DR (£2.5k p/m Loan Fee / 50% of Wages — From Parma)
I signed Schiavi on loan as backup/cover for my current DC and DR. He isn’t a terrible player and should do quite well in the Serie B. I am hoping that he can use his good heading to clear crosses and set pieces away better than we did last season, as that was one of our problems.
Oassim Bouy: MC (£0 Loan Fee / 100% of Wages — From Juventus)
The first of 4 Juventus loanee’s is Oassim Bouy. The Dutch MC should be able to handle the Serie B, having been on loan in this division last season. He will mainly be used as backup but I wont be afraid to bring him on.
Gabriel: DM (£0 Loan Fee / 100% of Wages — From Juventus)
I brought 19 year-old Gabriel in on loan as I felt he could do a very good job in this division. He has good attributes in the right areas and hopefully he can sit in front of the defenders and cause opposition forwards some trouble.
Marco Di Benedetto: ST (£0 Loan Fee / 50% of Wages — From Juventus)
I didn’t sign Benedetto for the first team, but he will be used mainly as backup, coming off the bench or covering injured players. He has good pace and a decent finish on him but his mental attributes need a lot of work.
Boadu Maxwell Acosty: AMR/AML (£0 Loan Fee / 50% of Wages — From Fiorentina)
I signed Acosty on loan for the same reason as Di Benedetto, backup. He can play both wings and has a lot of pace to give. He isn’t much else and that is why he will mainly be a bench warmer or covering for injuries.
Filippo Boniperti: AML (£0 Loan Fee / 50% of Wages — From Juventus)
My 4th and final loanee from Juventus is Filippo Boniperti. He is a good AML and should provide decent ball into the box and he can get a few goals too. He may not be the best in this league, but last season he got a 7.02 average rating on loan in this division so hopefully he can do well again.
Roberto Guitto: DM/MC (Free Transfer)
I signed Guitto on a free as I felt he could be good coming off the bench for us. He will not start many games but I think that he could be a good player and at just 22, he isn’t your typically old Italian DM.
Graziano Pelle: ST (£3k p/m Loan Fee / 50% of Wages — From Parma)
I am really happy about this player. I signed Pelle on loan from Parma as I felt Adailton could use some help up front. Pelle is a good ST who knows where the goal is and hopefully he can score quite a few for us. My only concern is that he is a typical Italian player… no pace.
Now onto the friendlies:
We didn’t have the best of results for the pre-season friendlies, losing them all except 1 against Real Spal. Although this does make me slightly concerned, I do feel that we can survive the Serie B.
Thanks for reading and please comment/vote!