Perhaps nobody has benefited more from Vincenzo Montella’s strikerless formation than Gaetano Castrovilli. The 22-year-old midfielder, who debuted in Serie A this year after the Aeroplanino refused to let him leave on loan again, has gone from little-known prospect to one of the most highly-rated Italian midfielders in the space of two months on the back of some classy performances with Fiorentina, and DS Daniele Pradè has rewarded his astonishing progress with a new contract (and hefty pay raise) that will keep him in Florence until 2024.
The new deal, which reportedly increases Castrovilli’s wage from to €800,000 after tax, with some added incentives possibly pushing the number even higher. That’s more than double his previous €370,000 salary, so you know he’s pretty pleased about that. There’s also, according to Pradè, no fixed buyout clause; the executive’s explanation was excellent too: “We don’t put [buyout clauses] in, otherwise we’d have to send the figures to Barcelona. From €250-300 million.”
It’s a smart decision for a player who has some of the older fans making Giancarlo Antognoni comparisons, although Castrovilli himself has been notably humble. At his press conference this morning announcing the deal, he looked almost bashful about the whole thing, thanking his family and adding, “I’m here to grow, but I want to stay for a long time.” By putting pen to paper, the midfielder has shown that he’s serious about the latter; his performances on the pitch have put the former beyond any doubt. However, given that he cited Kaká as his model on the pitch, expect to hear stories that AC Milan are planning to swap Fabio Borini for him.