You may have noticed there’s not much soccer news in the world of late (thanks, coronavirus), so some media outlets have been reduced to re-releasing their greatest hits. “Federico Chiesa is definitely leaving Fiorentina” has always gotten a rousing reception from crowds, so I guess we’re doing this one again. This time, all of Juventus, Inter Milan, and Manchester United are his obvious destinations. After heaving a big collective sigh, let’s run through this again.
First, we’ll go with the J******s one. Our friends over at BWRAO (who are some of the most clear-eyed Juve observers out there) just published a story on this and covered it quite well. We don’t really have much to add, as Danny’s done a good job outlining the reasoning, other than to mention that La Stampa doesn’t possess a precisely sterling record with these predictions, particularly when they relate to the hometown team (yes, Stampa is based in Turin).
Next we’ll tackle the Inter rumors. If Lautaro Martínez moves to Barcelona, as seems pretty possible, il Biscione will need a replacement. While Arsenal forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been floated as a likely candidate, another report out of Spain has tipped Fede as Antonio Conte’s preferred option. To rebut, we’d reiterate the reliability of reports from Spain about a player with absolutely zero ties to the media or footballing establishment there and add that, while Chiesa is wonderful, he’s nothing like Martínez as a player and still seems to struggle at times as a striker; shoehorning him into a 3-5-2 has been mighty difficult in Florence, and probably wouldn’t get easier in Milan.
Finally, let’s talk Man U. I’m not going to link to the story since it’s from the S*n, but it sounds like the Red Devils want to get Fede in the mix alongside Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial, Daniel James, and Tahith Chong (and that’s without mentioning Jadon Sancho, who may well be moving there as well this summer). Given Fede’s very close connection with his family—he lives at home and has his dad as an agent—it’s hard to imagine him packing up for the UK, especially given how unstable Manchester United’s been over the past few years.
I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that this sound and fury arises from Rocco Commisso’s recent comment that Chiesa can leave if he wants to, provided his valuation (€60 million seems to be the most common figure bandied around, but hasn’t ever been confirmed by anyone with any knowledge) is met by the buyer. That’s a long ways from admitting that the Italy international is leaving, particularly right now when the nature of the transfer window is so incredibly uncertain, but I guess it’s enough to get the wheels turning on a slow news day.