We’re less than 2 weeks out from Fiorentina’s Europa League meeting with Borussia Monchengladbach in the Round of 32, and Paulo Sousa has released his official squad for that fixture. It’s mostly what you’d expect, but there are a few notable players both present and absent. Note: the starred players on the alternates list, rather than in the full squad.
Bartlomiej Dragowski, Michele Cerofolini*, Giacomo Satalino*, Marco Sportiello, Ciprian Tatarusanu
Looks like Dragowski may be further along in his recovery from a knee injury than we’d thought, as it’s hard to fathom why Sousa would include him if he won’t be fit. I believe this is Primavera backup Cerofolini’s first mention with the first team, so auguri to him.
Davide Astori, Sebastien de Maio, Hrvoje Milic, Maxi Olivera, Gonzalo Rodriguez, Carlos Salcedo, Nenad Tomovic
This is all pretty much as anticipated. Also, anyone else forget that Milic is still on this team?
Milan Badelj, Federico Bernardeschi, Federico Chiesa*, Sebastian Cristoforo, Fabio Maistro*, Carlos Sanchez, Riccardo Saponara, Cristian Tello, Borja Valero, Matias Vecino
The most obvious absence is Federico Chiesa, who only made the B-list. It makes a certain amount of sense to give the teenager a bit of time off and let him focus on the league. The upshot is that we’ll probably see a good bit of Tello, and possibly some Cristoforo sprinkled in, as he’s deputized as a more defensive-minded wingback in Europe this season. A bit surprised that Maistro got the nod here rather than, say, Abdou Diakhate or Vitja Valencic, but they’re both more important to the success of the Primavera and will probably profit more from playing and training with their mates than sitting on the bench.
Khouma Babacar, Josip Ilicic, Nikola Kalinic, Jan Mlakar
The Mauro Zarate sale suddenly looks awfully bold, considering that Mlakar is awfully raw. Sure, the “new Kalinic” has 10 goals and 4 assists in 20 appearances, but it’s an awfully big jump from the Primavera to battling a Bundesliga side. I wouldn’t be shocked to see him make a late cameo, though, as he’s officially on the squad list (rather than being included as a “youth player” who can basically be swapped out for another youth player at a moment’s notice).