clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Final loanee reports: Part 2

This time, we're going to tackle the guys in the Lega Pro, Serie D, and non-Italian leagues. Part 1, which focused on the players loaned out to Serie A and Serie B clubs, can be found here. A reminder: the grades here are not indicative of the players' ability or potential, but rather the quality of their performances throughout the season.

Hey, remember this guy?
Hey, remember this guy?
Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images

Lega Pro

Alessandro Bacci (Siena): The 20 year old goalkeeper began the season as Robur's number one, but was benched after 9 matches. He'd played pretty well, so I'm not sure why. Manager Guido Carboni kept him on as the Coppa goalkeeper, which ended up being the low point of the season as Foggia overturned a 5-2 defeat in Siena to win the tie with a 6-1 performance at home. In fairness to him, Bacci played about as well as a goalkeeper who allows 6 goals can play; his defense really hung him out to dry. His final stats for the season are 16 starts, 22 goals conceded (but discounting that Foggia tie, it's 14 played and 14 conceded), with 3 clean sheets. He looks like a solid prospect whose goal for next season must be either nailing down a starting job in the Lega Pro or competing for one in Serie B.

Grade: C

Lorenzo Bardini (Prato): The 20 year old goalkeeper had a quiet season. He was the designated Coppa custodian for the Lanieri, and made 3 starts and 1 relief appearance after number one Francesco Rossi went down injured for a month. He allowed 8 goals in his 6 appearances, but kept 3 clean sheets, which indicates a leaky defense. He ought to go back to a Lega Pro team next season and try to win a starting spot; more than anything, he needs minutes.

Grade: D

Marco Berardi (Pordenone): The 20 year old midfielder had a reasonably productive year and showcased some versatility, working not only in his natural central position, but also as a holding midfielder and even wide on the left. While he never nailed down a regular starting spot, he usually made it into games as a substitute. He did have a bit of an injury problem, missing most of the end of the season with various niggles, but overall, he had a productive, unspectacular year, finishing with 17 appearances and an assist. Next year, he should try to win a full-time role in the Lega Pro or maybe even compete for a job with a Serie B club.

Grade: C+

Axel Gulin (Catania): The 19 year old winger had a real bummer of a season. After finding minutes hard to come by at his first stop with Pordenone, he moved to Catania in January, where he had the exact same problem. He made a single appearance with each club, playing a total of 44 minutes. It's a pretty big letdown for the former U17 international; he needs to go somewhere, anywhere, next season, and get some consistent minutes.

Grade: F

Saverio Madrigali (Arezzo): The 21 year old centerback had himself a heck of a year with the Amaranti, nailing down a starting spot from the word go and never relinquishing it. Moreover, he generally looked composed and in command of his area. He's probably better suited to a deeper defensive line, although he's quicker than you might think and is a good tackler. His final number on the year are 30 appearances (29 starts), with 4 goals, an assist, and just one booking. While he's probably not yet ready to pull on the purple shirt, a step up to Serie B next season seems a reasonable task that's well within his abilities. Oh, and he's still handsome.

Grade: B+

Diego Peralta (Pisa): The 19 year old Argentinean attacker enjoyed a nice season with the Torri, spending most of the year as manager Gennaro Gatusso's preferred impact sub before locking down a starting berth right at the season's end. He's a direct, tricky little player who prefers to start wide before cutting in to shoot with either foot (see the video below for evidence of his knack for the spectacular). He ended making 33 appearances (7 starts), and notched 4 goals and 3 assists. He may well be ready for a step up in competition, which is convenient for him, seeing has how Pisa just won promotion to Serie B and have requested to keep Peralta around next season, in what will probably be an expanded role. Hopefully, he'll seize the opportunity with both hands; regardless, his arrow is pointing up.

Grade: B

Jacopo Petriccione (Pistoiese): The 21 year old defensive midfielder a decent season, all things considered. He's a cerebral deep playmaker more than a physical destroyer, as evidenced by his twig-like build, which put him at a bit of a disadvantage in the hurly-burly of lower league football, but he had some moments of real quality, too. Unfortunately, those were interspersed with a lot of fouls; Jake got himself booked in his first three matches for the Arancioni. Overall, he finished the year with 29 appearances (22 starts), 2 goals, an assist (and in the final match of the season to keep his team out of the drop zone, no less), and 7 bookings. He's probably proven himself at this level, assuming he can clean up the defensive side of his game, and, as a former U19 international, he has the pedigree to try himself a higher level next season.

Grade: B

Serie D

Daniele Ansini (Viterbese Castrense): The 20 year old midfielder showed some talent this season. He started the year on the bench and didn't get into a match until November. He seized his opportunity, though, forcing his way into the starting lineup for several weeks before dropping back out. He resumed his starting role, though and scoring in 3 straight matches at one point. The Leoni ran away with their division, winning promotion, so Ansini might be well served by sticking around for next season at a higher level. He could end up elsewhere, though as Fiorentina look to get him some stronger competition. He made 19 appearances (16 starts), scoring 5 goals and collecting a booking as well.

Grade: B

Jacopo Pagnini (Poggibonsi): The 19 year old goalkeeper had an absolute monster year for the Giallorossi, marshaling a defense that was by far the stingiest in the league and boosted them to a 4th place finish despite an anemic attack. With a goalkeeper, it's always hard to tell how much of it is his own ability and how much of it is the defense (confession: I didn't watch Poggibonsi much this season), but when you make 33 appearances, allow a league-low 24 goals, and keep a league-high 15 clean sheets, it's impressive at any level. As they lost in the playoff, he may move up a level to prove himself against slightly more challenging competition next season, but he was clearly a beast this year.

Grade: A

Non-Italian leagues

Marko Bakić (Belenenses--Portugal): the 22 year old Montenegrin midfielder was clearly thrilled to be back after missing the past 2 years with a laundry list of injuries. After making the move to Portugal in January, he settled right into the starting line up and absolutely tore up the Primeira Liga for the Belém. He was voted the best winter addition in the league, and no wonder; in 15 appearances (13 starts), he produced goals, 3 assists, and 3 yellow cards. He's always had the tools to be a solid player (notably his shooting and surprising aerial ability), and now, given a chance to show those talents off, he's really shining. He originally said he wanted to stick the the Portuguese side next term, but has since walked that back, clarifying that he just wants to play as much as possible, which probably means another loan move away. Hopefully he'll continue to impress in a stronger league next year, then return to Fiorentina and become a fixture. It's the sort of trajectory we'd expect from a player originally signed by Pantaleo Corvino.

Grade: A-

Steve Leo Beleck (CFR Cluj--Romania): The 23 year old Cameroonian striker had a rocky season. He started out as the first choice striker for manager Toni Conceição, but, after starting the first 10 matches, managed just 2 goals and 2 assists; reduced to a substitute role, he wasn't much more productive, and continued to plummet down the pecking order until he ended up as a bottom of the barrel option and spending most of his time on the bench. He's a big, strong player with decent speed, but often looks a bit lost on the pitch. He made 33 appearances (20 starts), piling up 6 goals, 3 assists, and 4 yellow cards. In his most recent interview, he expressed his desire to return to Fiorentina, but he'll probably just be loaned right back out elsewhere, which is sort of sad. Dude is 23, and he's already played for 9 professional teams in his young career. A bit of stability would probably help him quite a bit.

Grade: D+

Mario Gómez (Beşiktaş--Turkey): The 30 year old German striker had himself a season in Turkey, leading the Süper Lig in scoring and forcing his way back into the German national team. We all know what Mario is; why he's suddenly picked it up in Turkey is probably a combination of weaker Turkish defenses, a tactical plan that better fits his strength, and some greatly renewed confidence. He made 41 appearances (38 starts), and scored a ridiculous 28 goals to go with 6 assists and 5 yellow cards. The real question is what's next, though. Fiorentina and Beşiktaş seem equally baffled about what the striker intends to do next year, and he's changed his mind several times, saying he wants to stay in Istanbul, or return to Germany, or go back to Florence, or do something else entirely. Wolfsburg wants to bring him on, but he's finally committed to, uh, making a decision after the Euros. With his repeated sniping at Fiorentina, the Viola faithful probably wouldn't be sad to see him sold, although he probably wouldn't bring much, given his weird situation.

Grade: A

Ianis Hagi (Viitorul Constanta--Romania): The 17 year old attacker had, frankly, an unimpressive year. Despite being penciled into the team sheet by his father Gheorghe for nearly every match, he wasn't especially productive. He's a nifty little player with good technique, but he'd probably be better served in a youth setup somewhere rather than competing against grown men. Considering that his father gave him the armband, it seems safe to say that the younger Hagi's minutes came from nepotism, rather than on-field results. His stats on the year are 32 appearances (28 starts), 3 goals, 2 assists, and 5 yellow cards. He'll be at Moena this summer, and Paulo Sousa and Corvino will have to decide whether or not to pay €1 million to keep him on the books; even if they do, he's almost certain to return to Romania for this season.

Grade: D

Giuseppe Rossi (Levante): The 29 year old striker didn't take the world by storm during his half season in Spain, but he showed signs of becoming Pepito again. A lot of his struggles are probably down to team context; Levante were, simply put, bad, and didn't do a particularly good job of getting him the ball in dangerous areas. Even so, he managed 6 goals, 2 assists, and a booking in 17 appearances (15 starts) for the Granotes. Now fully healthy and looking confident, he's another whose future is hazy. It sounds like he wants a triumphant return to Fiorentina, but the Viola have rather moved on without him, leading to a really awkward standoff. Sampodoria, Lazio, and Galatasarary have all expressed interest in him, and Bologna have gone a step further, openly inquiring about him, with DS Riccardo Bigon effusive in his praise. Whether the Rossoblu have the resources to bring him in (and with Fiorentina interested in Amadou Diawara, it's possible) remains to be seen. La Nazione helpfully opines that we'll know within about 10 weeks.

Grade: B-

Rafał Wolski (Wisła Kraków--Poland): The 23 year old Polish midfielder started the season with KV Mechelen in Belgium, where he struggled. Frequently left on the bench or out of the squad entirely, he made 14 appearances (7 starts), and notched an assist and a yellow card. He could probably make a case that the Malinois never used him correctly--he started a match at leftback, of all places. In the winter, he went back to Poland with Wisła Kraków and looked like a whole new player: calm, composed, involved, and positively lethal in the area. In his 14 appearances (13 starts), he picked up 4 goals and 9 assists to go with 3 yellow cards. The Biała Gwiazda wanted to buy him outright, but some financial disorder kept them from redeeming the deal, and he'll be back at Moena next year. As another Corvino signing who's just starting to find his way again, expect him to spend another year on loan, probably in a slightly more difficult league than the Ekstraklasa, so that the Viola can make sure he's trending the right way before making a decision on his long-term fate.

Grade: B-