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Fiorentina 21-0 Val di Fassa: 3 things we learned

Going by the score, this could have been either type of football.

ACF Fiorentina v SPAL - Serie A Photo by Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images

As we wend through the sticky months of summer, it’s nice to know that somewhere out there (in Moena, to be precise), Fiorentina are ramping up their efforts for next season. They played their first preseason match today, beating local amateur side Val di Fassa by a score of 21 to nothing. Since there’s only so much you can glean from a bunch of professionals playing a bunch of guys who have full time jobs that don’t involve the game, we’ll provide you with some bare-bones reflections, but won’t draw too many conclusions.

First half

Lineup: Drągowski: Beloko, Ceccherini, Hristov, Ranieri (Pierozzi 40’); Benassi, Cristoforo, Saponara; Montiel, Vlahović, Koffi (Meli 40’)

Goals: Benassi 4’, Vlahović 15’ (ass. Ranieri), Montiel 16’, Vlahović 20’ (ass. Montiel), Saponara 22’, Ranieri 24’ (ass. Saponara), Vlahović 37’, Meli 42’ (ass. Montiel)

Second half

Lineup: Terracciano (Chiorra 83’); Venuti (Pierozzi 80’), Dabo (Baroni 80’), Vitor Hugo, Hancko; Castrovilli (Meli 80’), Lakti, Eysseric; Sottil, Simeone, Báez (Gori 80’)

Goals: Sottil 50’, Simeone 51’, Hancko 59’, Báez 61’ (ass. Hancko), Sottil 64’, Báez 69’, Simeone 76’ (ass. Hancko), Meli 82’ (ass. Pierozzi), Meli 87’, Sottil 89’, Eysseric 90’ (ass. Sottil), Meli 91’ (ass. Gori)

Three things we learned

  1. Giovanni Simeone still has the yips. He got himself a brace, which was nice, but somehow put a point-blank header wide while completely unmarked. Also missed a couple other decent chances. While Dušan Vlahović probably hasn’t passed him up on the depth chart yet, that’s not entirely outside the realm of possibility if the Serbian teenager has a strong preseason.
  2. Joe Barone is a charming guy. Rocco Commisso’s right hand man was in attendance today, sitting in the stands at the Benatti and chatting up the spectators. The highlight was when a kid asked him to make sure Federico Chiesa doesn’t leave and Joe duly called up Daniele Pradè and put the kid on the line to explain the importance of keeping Fede. It was quite delightful.
  3. Professional players are very good at soccer. It’s very easy to watch Fiorentina (or any team) on TV and not really understand just how fast and strong every single player out there is, how much better their first touch and tactical awareness are, than any of us watching. Val di Fassa is a decent amateur team, and Fiorentina’s backups and youth prospects absolutely toyed with them for 90 minutes. It’s a stark reminder of the unbridgeable gulf in our understanding of the game and the players’, and it bears remembering.