Football Season Guide



IN: Marco Sportiello (gk)(Frosinone, end of loan); Luca Valzania (mid)(Frosinone, end of loan); Nicolas Haas (mid)(Palermo, end of loan); Marko Pasalic (mid)(Chelsea, on loan); Luis Ferdinando Muriel (att)(Sevilla); Ruslan Malinovskyi (mid)(Genk); Martin Skrtel (def)(free agent)


Etrit Berisha (sp)(gk)(Spal, on loan): Enrico Delprato (mid)(Livorno, on loan); Boris Radunovic (gk)(Hellas Verona, on loan); Gianluca Mancini (r)(def)(Roma); Dejan Kulusevski (mid)(Parma, on loan); Andrea Colpani (mid)(Trapani, on); Marco Carnesecchi (gk)(Trapani, on loan); Luca Vido (att)(Crotone, on loan); Andreas Cornelius (att)(Parma, on loan); Marco Tumminello (att)(Pescara, on loan); Filippo Melegoni (mid)(Pescara, on loan); Nicolas Haas (mid)(Frosinone, on loan)

Last season undoubtedly was the best one ever for Atalanta, as they finished third in the Serie A, holding the best attack of the league, and achieved an historical qualification to the next Champions League Group stage, while also enjoying a great Coppa Italia run. With the campaign barely over, several clubs came to the management's doors asking for their stars, Zapata and Ilicic above all, and for the architect of their triumphs, Gian Piero Gasperini, but all their offers were immediately rejected. To prove how ambitious they are, they confirmed their key players and extended the deal with the coach, while guaranteeing him a competitive squad for the season ahead. Therefore, they tried strengthening their squad in every department. First of all, they had Pasalic’s loan from Chelsea renewed, as he had performed decently, especially towards the end of the past season. Moreover, they added some needed depth in the attack, acquiring Muriel, who can be unstoppable in his best days but is too discontinuous. They invested plenty of cash also on the talented Malinovsky, who might become a protagonist in the midfield, and a valid cover for Ilicic, whose past campaign was limited by injuries. In order to fund those arrivals, they had to sell the Italian international Mancini, but he was wisely replaced by the expert Skrtel, thus injecting some highly-needed European experience into the defence. Considering how injury-prone Masiello, Palomino and Toloi tend to be, Atalanta need at least one more defender and, possibly, one more attacking midfielder.


Repeating the past campaign might be impossible. Another top 6 finish and bright Champions League and Coppa Italia campaigns seem more likely.