What with the haze around the Nikola-Kalinic-to-Tianjin situation, it’s natural that Fiorentina would be linked to a multitude of strikers to replace him. And, given his struggles at West Ham, it’s natural that Simone Zaza would be linked to a return to Italy. But over the past couple of days, so many different entities have been agitating for this one that I guess we need to address it.
Once considered one of the peninsula’s most promising strikers, Zaza’s career trajectory has pointed almost straight down since returning to Juventus from Sassuolo. A year in Turin saw him unable to push past Paulo Dybala, Mario Mandzukic, and Alvaro Morata for minutes; he made just 8 starts in his 24 appearances, notching a respectable but unexciting 8 goals. After that penalty miss in the Euros, he moved to West Ham on loan, where he’s become a bit of a laughinstock: at the halfway point, he’s made just 8 league appearances and has yet to score.
Various media sources in Italy have reported that he’s interested in coming back to Serie A, and that Fiorentina, Genoa, and AC Milan are his top choices. Even his father has commented on how good a fit Florence would be for his misfiring son. It’s telling, though, that we still haven’t heard anything about the club’s interest in the player. It seems unlikely that Fiorentina, flush with lucre from a hypothetical Kalinic sale, would sink some of that into an expensive reclamation project, but I suppose it’s within the realm of possibility. But as things stand, it’s firmly outside the realm of probability.