We’ve heard this one floating around in the æther for quite some time and the Corriere Fiorentino has recently added fuel to the fire (we can’t find the story there, but everyone’s crediting them as the source, so here’s Football Italia instead) by claiming that Fiorentina is monitoring the situation between Juventus and manager Maurizio Sarri with an eye to swooping in if the relationship were to fracture.
While the idea of Federico Chiesa, Gaetano Castrovilli, Nikola Milenković, and company growing under Sarri’s tutelage is exciting indeed, we’re going to pump the brakes very hard. There’s no real evidence besides the ubiquitous “sources” (you know, the ones that link Pedro Obiang to the Viola transfer window) that the Bianconeri want him out. Juve’s in position to win another scudetto and, with a result against Lyon, could push to the quarterfinals and beyond in the Champions League. It’s not like Sarri has been a bust in Turin, and Pavel Nedved and his unholy coterie won’t be quick to hit the eject button.
Given Rocco Commisso’s desire to make a splash on the market, a big move for one of the best-regarded managers in the world makes sense, and the prospect of a €6 million salary doesn’t slam the door as it would have in the past. Getting Sarri on board would serve as a symbol to players all over that the project in Florence is a serious one, and that’s invaluable.
There are plenty of pieces for a manager like Sarri to mold, too. Fiorentina have the youngest squad in the league and will only get younger when Cyril Thèrèau leaves at season’s end. That said, this is an outfit designed over the past few mercati to counter quickly, so getting Sarri’s infamously meticulous attacking combinations in place would take a fair amount of time, especially in what’s set to be the craziest offseason in history.
It could also be that the prickly cigarette chomper is ready to work with a set of smaller egos; stories of Chelsea players’ frustration with him are thick on the ground (Kepa Arrizabalaga says hi), and it sounds like things aren’t much better with the Juvenuts. An ambitious club of Fiorentina’s size—keep in mind that the Viola and Napoli have basically switched spots over the past dozen years—might be the exact right place for Sarri, especially given his connections to Tuscany.
Again, this feels like it’s probably just some journalist trying to spark some sort of story by overstating or flatly making up rumors. We shouldn’t get too amped up about anything yet, so I’m not going to really consider it further until we hear more. For footballing reasons, the addition of Sarri would be a coup for Fiorentina and would likely mean fascinating things for this team, but it’s all hypothetical and we should just leave it there for now.