In a move that’s probably not a shock to anyone, Fiorentina have released Chilean midfielder Matías Fernández from his contract. He’s expected to finalize a deal with Mexican outfit Nexcaca, based in Aguascalientes, in the coming days, which will end a 5-year stint under Viola control. It will also save the Gigliati his €1 million salary.
When Matigol unexpectedly arrived in Florence back in 2012, he brought with him a solid reputation and a hatful of injuries which prevented him from cutting in front of David Pizarro, Borja Valero, and Alberto Aquilani in Vincenzo Montella’s beautiful and romantic midfield. It took a couple of years for the soft-spoken midfielder to assert himself, but he was hands down the best player in purple in the 2014-2015 season. Alas, injuries derailed him the subsequent year, and new boss Paulo Sousa gave the okay to loan him to AC Milan, where Montella was clearly thrilled to have him. The Rossoneri, though, spent their Chinese millions to improve the squad, and Mati returned to Florence. Given his age and salary, he was never likely to stick around for a rebuilding project.
Honestly, we couldn’t be happier for him. Aguascalientes is one of the loveliest cities in Mexico, and we think the easy-going pace of life there will suit our diffident Mati. He’s such a fun player (and seems like a really nice, quiet dude) that we can’t help but wish the best for him wherever he goes. At 31, he’s certainly got plenty of good football left in him, and the playing style in Mexico may prolong his career considerably.
So farewell, Matigol. You were the best for a year, and the funnest for more than that. We’ll miss the sheer unquantifiable joy you brought to the pitch every time you crossed the white lines, and we really hope you end up happy and healthy in your new home.