Think of your favorite pair of shoes. They're probably not the newest ones you own, but they're comfortable and don't look ridiculous. You can wear them out to dinner or on a date, but they're fine for kicking around the house and doing chores as well. They're not the super-cool kicks all your friends have, but they're pretty rad.
But then they finally fall apart. I mean, that's what happens when you wear the same pair of sneakers every day for a few years. The sole's flapping loose, the stitching is coming apart, the laces are shredded, and not even duct tape can salvage them. So you go shoe shopping. The question is, do you get a pair identical to the ones you had before, or do you change it up and go with something new?
Given the Tod's connection, I think a reference to footwear is appropriate here. Under Vincenzo Montella, we saw a fun, talented squad win lots of games with beautiful football, but eventually that fell apart. Club management found a new mister in Paulo Sousa who was supposed to be everything Montella wasn't: direct, ruthless, pragmatic. Instead, he's refined his predecessor's aesthetic, leading to an even more Montella-esque team. Given, it was supposed to be a rebuilding year, so the unexpectedly high place in the table is pretty sweet. But, after a very active winter market, this might be this pair of shoes' last chance before your significant other (I guess the della Valles in this analogy, which, um, it's not a perfect analogy) throws them away and makes you buy new ones. So let's hope for one last hurrah, with a top-three finish and some more champagne football. You know, just for kicks.
And if you want to re-live the entire freaking window, here is all of our coverage of the month-long absurdity.
After a whirlwind of arrivals and departures, here is the final list of who's in and who's out.
Here is our breakdown of what Zárate brings to the squad.
Comment of the week
No question. Mike-R's find of the best piece of graffiti to show up in Florence in recent memory takes the cake.
Well, that's it for this week, folks. Start getting your #banter ready for the Spurs fixture. Forza viola.