As expected, Fiorentina announced today that Patrick Cutrone returned to Wolverhampton Wanderers following the early termination of his loan by mutual consent. This move is the second of Fiorentina’s winter Mercato following Riccardo Saponara’s loan to Spezia, as the squad size continues to be cut down at Cesare Prandelli’s request. Cutrone was signed from Wolves last January on an eighteen-month loan with a €3 million loan fee, and a clause that should he start a certain number of games in the Viola jersey the move would be made permanent for €15 million more.
In his time with Fiorentina, Cutrone had both ups and downs but never looked like justifying the price tag in his contract. Cutrone’s excellent work rate and clinical finishing were evident, but his link-up play and ability with the ball still need a lot of work. However, that doesn’t mean his time with Fiorentina was a complete failure. While his stat sheet for Fiorentina may only read five goals in 34 appearances, Cutrone was one of the key figures between Fiorentina’s strong form towards the end of last season. Cutrone scored three games in a row for the Viola in July. A last-gasp equalizer against Verona, a joyous finish against Lecce (my favorite moment of his), and the second goal against Torino. Fiorentina took seven points from those three matches, a lot of which was due to Cutrone. Heading into this season, I thought there was a real chance he could establish himself as our starting #9 moving forward.
CONFIRMED: Wolves have recalled Patrick Cutrone from his loan spell at Fiorentina— Goal (@goal) January 7, 2021
He returns with Raul Jimenez still recovering from a fractured skull.pic.twitter.com/AiTFa8jbzM
Unfortunately, it was that clause in that contract that would be his downfall with the club. The club clearly not wanting to spend big on Cutrone, coupled with a desire to prioritize Dusan Vlahovic’s development, left Cutrone out in the cold at the start of this season. Even though the clause was publicly removed by his agent in early December, Cutrone still wasn’t able to find more time than cameos from the bench. He mustered just 185 minutes in 11 substitute appearances in Serie A this season.
When looking back at Cutrone’s stint with Fiorentina, the player rightfully can be aggrieved by his mistreatment from management. Staying on the bench while Vlahovic was misfiring through the fall must have been extremely frustrating for him, especially when this was due to a clause he had little say in. I don’t think there’s a player who can feel more rightfully angry at Fiorentina for its treatment of him than Cutrone. I’d like to commend him for the fact that through all of the disappointment he had this fall, Cutrone was a complete professional, cheering on his teammates loudly from the bench and being the first to run out and celebrate a goal. Never once I heard of any complaints of his to the press.
Cutrone’s next move is unknown. There’s a chance he stays with Wolves due to Raul Jimenez’s head injury, and there are also rumors of a return to Serie A on loan, with Benevento and Sampdoria leading the race. Wherever he ends up, I know he will do very well if he’s played in a system that puts confidence in his abilities and plays to his strengths. Either of the two Serie A teams I mentioned would do that, so I’m excited to see the success he has in his future.