We're all excited about Matías Vecino. He was outstanding last year with Empoli and has looked like a tough, versatile, and promising addition to Paulo Sousa's midfield. But in the furious seasons of the summer market, where rumors come together with other rumors, there's always something ready to rise up from the depths and ruin our hopes. In this case, it's Napoli, who have already reportedly offered 10 million euros for the exciting Uruguayan youth international.
Vecino is a technically adept box-to-box player with a good shot, an eye for goal, and a willingness to dig in and scrap. He broke through with new Napoli coach Maurizio Sarri at Empoli last season on loan, and the chain smoking Neapolitan manager wants to bring the talent he helped uncover over to his new club.
Napoli would have been interested in Vecino regardless of the new mister's connection after shipping off several battling but aging midfielders over the past couple mercato sessions. Fiorentina has seemed surprisingly willing to listen to offers, but Prade and company do want around €15 million for Vecino, which makes sense so late in the transfer window.
With Joaquin's looming exit, Vecino could be sacrificed in order to reinforce the wing, as the central midfield is, barring injury - which has totally never been a problem for this club - in pretty good shape. Losing Vecino would certainly hurt the depth, leaving the Viola with only four central midfielders (one of which is Mati, the least adept at a holding role) but whether or not depth and promise is worth the same as money that could be spent on a new winger is certainly up for debate; I'm just glad I'm not the one who has to work the calculus and figure out when the money starts making sense.
Further complicating matters is the news from fiorentina.it that Fiorentina are reputedly interested in Napoli's Moroccan wide attacker, Omar El Kaddouri, who impressed last season with Torino. While the club is supposedly standing firm on its valuation of Vecino, it's fair to wonder if El Kaddouri could be a makeweight in the deal.
In a perfect world, Fiorentina will hang onto Vecino, a player who seems tailor-made for Sousa's all-action midfield, and start becoming a more robust heir to Mati Fernandez. But in this imperfect world we occupy, sometimes you have to separate what's absolutely necessary and what's just gravy.