We’ve seen Fiorentina connected to a host of strikers over the past couple of months. Most of the options, aside from Mario Mandžukić, have been up-and-comers who could maybe take that next step in Florence. This has frustrated most of us to no end, as the Viola already have young guns Christian Kouamé, Patrick Cutrone, and Dušan Vlahović. If any new striker arrives, he’ll have to be a proven goalscorer and an obvious upgrade on that trio. And if Alfredo Pedullà is to be believed, the man Giuseppe Iachini has identified is Éder.
Yes, Éder. That Éder. The journeyman striker Éder who had a brief moment in the sun at Sampdoria before flaming out at Inter Milan and moving to Jiangsu Suning in 2018. 33-year-old, spent-the-past-two-years-in-China Éder. The Éder whose best scoring return in Serie A is 12 goals. Yeah, that Éder. I’m going to need a few deep breaths before I continue writing, so give me a minute.
Okay. So Éder is 33 now. He’s tallied 23 goals and 12 assists over his 46 competitive appearances for Inter Milan owner Zhang “Steven” Jindong’s other team, including 2 and 2 in the 5 matches this year. That is a fine return for a guy who was never all that prolific in Italy, one notable season aside. That is not the record of a guy who’s going to fix an anemic Fiorentina attack.
Éder and Iachini go way back; the oriundo broke onto the scene with a 27-goal season in Serie B for Empoli a literal decade ago. Following rather fruitless spells with Brescia and Cesena, he helped fire Sampdoria back to Serie A under Beppe’s tutelage in 2012, then became a mainstay under Delio Rossi (?), Siniša Mihajlović (??), and Vincenzo Montella (???) with the Blucerchiati before his move to Inter, where things never really came together for him. Along the way, he picked up 26 caps for Italy, scoring 6 times and forming a uh dream partnership with guys like Graziano Pellè.
In theory, Éder isn’t a terrible signing for Fiorentina. He’d likely come very cheap and has plenty of experience to mentor a group of young strikers. He could score a goal or two as the third- or fourth-string striker. But, setting aside the purple bong for a moment, it’s pretty well impossible to imagine him being worth his salary. He’s 33 and has spent the past 2 years in China, which is, with respect, not a league full of top performers. He was starting to look stale in Serie A in 2017, and there’s no reason to think that multi-year absence might have improved his play.
The only positive of this rumor is that Pedullà isn’t the most reliable reporter around and is more than likely on one right now. If he’s correct, though, that Iachini sees a 33 year old forward who’s barely topped double digits in his Serie A career as the solution to all of Fiorentina’s problems, we could be in for a devastatingly long year. With Éder. Yes, that Éder.