With the news that Federico Chiesa may miss Monday’s clash against Brescia, Vincenzo Montella faces quite a choice. There’s obviously nobody on the roster who can replace the Italy international, but there are a lot of talented individuals who can bring different qualities to the the attack alongside Franck Ribery, and Montella has to figure out which one of them maximizes the odds of success against the Rondinelle.
Kevin-Prince Boateng brings a wealth of experience and a good off-pitch relationship with Ribery, along with a penchant for the occasional spectacular goal, the physicality to battle with opposing centerbacks, and some clever hold-up play. However, his tendency to drop deep would put him in similar areas of the pitch to Ribery, his lack of pace wouldn’t frighten a defense, and he’s not likely to beat his man off the dribble.
Pedro has been in fantastic form for the Brazil U23s, but he’s yet to make his debut for Fiorentina after a lengthy injury layoff. He’s rated as one of his nation’s most promising strikers back home but hasn’t kicked on in Florence yet, possibly due to the differences in language and lifestyle. He’s a lethal finisher with pace and strength who’s also got the technique to get past his man. Really, he’s everything you could want in a number nine, but again, he’s yet to make a competitive appearance in Europe.
Riccardo Sottil is probably the closest thing to a Fede replacement available. With his blistering pace and fantastic dribbling, he terrorizes opponents and wins fouls at a better clip than anyone on the roster. His end product remains a bit uneven, though, because he’s 20 years old and is in just his second season as a professional after spending last year on loan at Pescara. He’s immensely talented—frankly, he looks like the next star of the winger production line at the Primavera that’s already produced Federicos Bernardeschi and Chiesa—but he’s still a bit raw, and it seems like Montella doesn’t feel he’s ready yet.
Dušan Vlahović the youngest man on this list is also the largest, even if he doesn’t play like it. The Very Large Teen’s best attribute at this point of his young career is that he times his runs into the channels brilliantly, offering a serious threat in behind. His finishing, however, hasn’t manifested itself at the top level yet (although he’s been banging them in for the Primavera, so it’s just a matter of time) and he’s not much of a passer at this stage either. He hasn’t made an appearance in a few weeks, which seems to indicate that Cousin Vinnie thinks he needs a bit more seasoning.
Rachid Ghezzal is perhaps the greatest unknown to Viola fans, but also seems to have forced his way into Montella’s plans as the vice-Chiesa with a couple of brief cameos to replace the number 25 at the ends of games. He also scored in the friendly against Pistoiese, so he’s in good form for perhaps the first time in a year or so, given that his move to Leicester City ended pretty poorly for him. A tricky winger who likes to work on the right and cut inside, he possesses a cultured left foot and a bag of dribbling tricks but he lacks pace and, even against the Serie C opposition a couple days ago, tends to drift in and out of play.
Which attacker should Montella start against Brescia on Monday?
This poll is closed
Bobby Duncan, Christian Koffi, Nino Kukovec or another youngster from the Primavera
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