While we’ve spent much of the week embroiled in debate about Fiorentina’s treatment of Stefano Pioli and his subsequent resignation, we haven’t really hit on whether or not his replacement is really the right man for the job right now. Vincenzo Montella, step right up and let’s have a look at you.
Montella, for those of you who haven’t been around for too long, was the Viola manager from 2012 to 2015. In his three years at the helm, he steered the Viola to three consecutive fourth-place finishes back when that wasn’t good enough for the Champions League (thanks, all the Italian teams who scuppered the coefficient for a decade). He also made some good tournament runs, including the Europa League quarterfinals in 2014-2015 (bowing out to eventual winners Sevilla) and the 2014 Coppa Italia final (lost to Napoli). Perhaps more importantly, he restored a certain attacking verve to Florence which had been absent for years, focusing on positive, possession-based football that turned the Viola into international darlings for the soccer cognoscenti.
On the other hand, he left acrimoniously, mired in a pissing match with the Della Valles about how much they’d spend on reinforcements for the squad (we stood with Montella at the time and still think he was right). None of his subsequent jobs—at Sampdoria, AC Milan, and Sevilla—brought him any success, and he was sacked from the latter two for poor results. His style of play, while pleasing on the eye, became predictable and thus easy to stop: deep defenses and speedy counters constantly undid the Viola during his time, and he consistently dropped points to smaller sides. Too, his relationship with the Curva Fiesole was often chilly, as the die-hards wanted more emotion from the ice-cold mister.
So now back to the big question: is Montreal the right coach for Fiorentina right now?
This poll is closed
Here’s your weekend thread, folks. Stay loose.