Pirlo to remain if we manage 4th or even 5th? or perhaps shipped out as Max returns?

Andrea Agnelli to be replaced by…Alessandro Nasi?

Paratici and Nedved OUT…Lippi and Marotta IN???

Will John Elkann act to save the sinking ship??

Why are AC Milan doing everything they can to help us??

Pirlo trialling a 3-5-2 at this late stage of the campaign of woe and horror??

Has our President become the most hated man in football?? And why did he not see this coming??

Will we snap up some free transfers??

……………………………

These questions and more perplex and dominate the papers more than our players or action on field, other than Ronaldo, who is linked to United. Not sure I believe they have any space for him, though do have the financial clout and a fairytale of kind return for the player (and fans)…Yet he probably needs to accept a pay cut. And would we get the alleged 29m fee we need to avoid a loss???

The focus of the papers is very much on the potential exits of Pirlo, Paratici, Nedved and even Andrea Agnelli. Whilst I would happily see the first three go, and believe they might, it seems a much bigger and quite brutal move by John Elkann to remove his cousin. Family dinners would lead to murder…

Curious but expected talk of Lippi lured back to Turin. He would make an exceptional anything at the club at director level, or even above. The man is pure class. Which I imagine would lead to a restructure of how the club is run, on a footballing and ethical level. Perhaps precisely what we need. Though also, if Agnelli is blinkered on doubling down on his project, it seems unlikely for him to bring in a man who is very old school, despite his standing in the game…

Equally, if not more unsurprising is Max Allegri linked to the club. I was one at the time (of his departure) who was keen for change, but sad to see him go. For he not only oversaw an amazing period for the club but was also superb at managing that tricky balance between paternal/amicable bond to the players on a human level and The Boss. He may come back with fresh ideas. He may come back with the same ideas. Yet either way, he would assuredly prove an immensely steadier hand than Pirlo. Who else could replace the much maligned current head coach???

4 reasons why Leonardo Jardim would have been perfect for Arsenal |  Sportslens.com

My own idea, which unfortunately seems forlorn and too outlandish for most, is Leonardo Jardim. Out of work, proven to operate with a smaller budget, to develop some superb players from raw talent and able to adjust his system to fit the squad at his disposal. Other than which Zidane…or Max.

As for 4th spot…I remain (close to) convinced we will achieve this. Which seems harder to miss than hit. My only concern is that it will be enough to keep the current management and directors in place. Which is not at all the same as wishing we don’t make it. I want to see us not just in the CL every year but as a major protagonist.

Given our financial situation, which doesn’t look too promising, it makes sense for the club to be looking carefully at the ‘free’ transfer opportunities, which presents some curious players>>>

Donnarumma

Is he really that much of an upgrade on Szcesney???I am unsure, other than much younger and italian. And yes, I like the idea of my italian team having more italian players. My main concern here however is the wages. We already have an issue with major disparity and too many on excessive weekly figures. Whilst Donnarruma has a brilliant name and would come cheap-ish on the surface of things, there would be a hefty sign on fee, also a few million for Raiola and yet another player on mega wages…The club needs to stop focusing on these kind of deals and look instead to improve where we are clearly in need of improvement. Is GK one of our priorities? I don’t think so…

Depay

This move makes too much sense to ignore. Is the Belgian now mature and settled, focused on his football?? He has returned from injury and proven still potent. Certainly has the confidence, ability, experience and given a choice of bringing him in or keeping Morata, I would choose the former. As the Spaniard has been too up and down, though when in form, superb, especially earlier this season. His price tag however for an extended loan or transfer is huge. Depay is cheaper and may well prove equally, if not more potent.

Wijnaldum

Highly experienced. Not yet beyond his prime. Would not demand huge wages and we could likely guarantee him first team regular action. Also trained by one of the best in the business. This move depends on both reaching CL qualification AND removing one of Rabiot and Ramsey, which may prove trickier than many seem to believe.

Calhanoglu

He is a central attacking midfielder by natural role. Decent on the ball, chips in with assists and a few goals. Yet given our apparent interest in Locatelli and perhaps De Paul, I would much rather either of those came in. Again any of these moves is dependent on the same factors as mentioned above.

Ramos/Giroud

Great players, with both offering immense experience at the highest level and the leadership mentality we are sorely lacking all across the squad. Yet both too old and will be demanding mega riches.

For now it seems enough to hope for, to finish the season without any further grisly episodes. It is evident we need improvement in CM and both FB areas, our CF role is up in the air, Dybala is likely to be pushed out. Chiellini to retire, perhaps also Buffon seek his swan song elsewhere. It has become apparent to me that we need renovation higher up first and foremost. There is no shame in changing those involved with a project which seems what is required, starting with the coaching staff.

Also…to briefly address these suggestions of Pirlo as our choice of manager due to financial considerations – I disagree hugely. This madness of a decision which I admittedly came to support, was down to one man alone in what felt a fugue state of blind rage. This was Agnelli so angry that he made a decision with his rage not his head. It as clearly not planned, for why announce him as U23 coach then promote him within a week or two? We can spend 1.8m on Pirlo per season yet plunder 2.5m on Christopher Lungoyi from Lugano as a mere punt for our U23 side…

Too long now have I become accustomed to Pirlo’s haphazard ‘system’ then brief, sporadic moves to a far more solid 4-4-2, then back to the transitional horrorshow, then to try a 3-5-2. I have watched Bentancur – by far our most consistent performer last season, and steadily developing before which – regress hideously this campaign. I have watched Kulusevski played out of position as a SS with his back to goal, as a LM, and then sporadically in a role I don’t understand and neither does he. And yet Kulu was voted by many outside of Juve as the best young player in Serie A last season.

I do not believe for a second that Kulu is a dud. He has proven previously a much better player than we have seen this season. Which I can apply to most the squad…

All I hope for is that we can finish in the top four…after which, nothing is certain, anything is possible.