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Report: Kamil Grabara may be the new number one

The Viola sound ready to roll the dice on another Polish goalkeeper.

Bayer 04 Leverkusen v FC Kobenhavn - Friendly Game Photo by Oliver Kaelke/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

Fiorentina hasn’t been shy about trying to upgrade on goalkeeper Pietro Terracciano, even though he’s been rock solid the past couple years. A couple dozen names have already popped up this summer as potential replacements for the World’s Funnest Dad, but it sounds like Kamil Grabara may actually be in the club’s sights.

The 24-year-old Poland international moved to Liverpool as a teenager but never made an appearance for the Reds, instead earning his minutes on loan at Aarhus and Huddersfield before joining København for €3.5 million in 2021. He hit the ground running, winning the Superliga’s Goalkeeper of the Year in his first season and helping the Lions win the league once and finish second another.

His form earned him a cap for Poland last year, and in a competitive fixture, no less. In an oddly circular chain of events, he was the man who replaced an injured Bartłomiej Drągowski in the World Cup squad, and he seems to be Wojciech Szczęsny’s heir apparent, just as Bart was a couple years ago.

There is the apparent Polish Curse at Fiorentina to deal with, of course: none of Rafał Wolski, Jakub Błaszczykowski, Drągowski, Szymon Żurkowski, and Krzysztof Piątek have worked out for various reasons. Too, the Viola’s attempts to replace Terracciano have veered into the farcical: Drągowski overcorrecting in his attempt to become a modern sweeper keeper, Pierluigi Gollini forgetting how to do his job, and Salvatore Sirigu suffering a brutal injury one game after his move.

If Grabara can overcome those, though, he could be a fantastic long-term solution. Despite his height (195 cm/6’5), he gets down to smother low shots very well, and he uses his frame and lankiness extraordinarily to their greatest effect. He’s fearless coming for crosses and has the necessary reflexes to stop shots from distance and point-blank attempts both. He’s a bit prone to punching the ball back into dangerous areas and he needs to work on passing the ball out, but all the pieces are there.

Polish journalist Aleksander Bernard thinks that Copenhagen want €15 million for their star goalkeeper and he also thinks that the Viola are ready to pay it. If that’s the case, the deal should be done in the coming week or so. While he’s got plenty of obstacles to overcome, it’s hard not to like an enormous lanky man with a ponytail and a blue mask (which he’s worn since a surgery following a head clash in 2021), so let’s hope he can make a mark in Florence if he ends up arriving.