Many of us have our own versions of support for a club, of bond to the managers, colours, history, successes, failures, greatest and worst players. It differs from fan to fan, and hugely so between generations. On the whole, these subjective proclivities intersect on core grounds, of how the team are faring. We win, and we all feel the same. We lose and we all feel the same.
I appreciate Andrea Agnelli. He has overseen a glorious period of success, of domestic dominance, of a return for our club considered as near if not one of the top sides. I am ever grateful to the man. All of which is intensified by his bloodlines as connected to the club as its very existence and century long storied history.
All was wonderful, for many moons, all was praise and pride for the club and Andrea leading the resurgence towards back where we historically belong.
And then came the Sarri saga…not so much his appointment. Which could be understood, no matter how much I disliked some of it, like many others, I wanted change, we had become stale and lethargic, listless, predictable. My enthusiasm for change, whilst Sarri was an odd choice, was felt mirrored in Il Presidente…A roll of the dice was needed, and regardless of the choice of manager, it went bad, proved a mistake. Which compounded my own bad taste in the mouth ( cattivo gusto in bocca ) since Beppe was kicked out and Ronaldo came in with the engineer of that move Paratici, usurping his long term boss. That had made everything feel different, somehow a focus on aesthetics, branding…a muddle eyed Beppe, who made many mistakes, yet also oversaw more than most but Conte of our return to a reckoning of greatness…shown the door, and his underling with shades and swanky clothes the new man. There was much in this I felt and perceived, despised, but kept on believing we need a shake up, maybe not the shake up I wanted ideally, but nevermind, for they know better than me, and its CHANGE!
I kept my concerns in the shadows (kind of!). Watched us fall apart under Sarri, stumble across the finish line. Looked to our King of the Castle for guidance and saw his underling Paratici confirm Sarri, saw the King anoint Pirlo as U23 coach with a fanfare of publicity, then saw him a week later confirm Pirlo as our new manager.
Yet again, so much passion and momentum of supporting the club, I focused on the potential positives, Pirlo the Great, could be amazing! A bold and inspired choice! Yet my mind, ever cynical, was churning and creating new areas of concern. I was easily feeling ‘una favola!’. Yet I was thinking ‘This seems a shambles’.
Add to this the fall out with Conte and uncouth behaviour for all the media to pick up. Then the Superleague debacle, which whilst understanding the need and bitter of the cartel UEFA operates, it was delivered in an incredibly misguided and misjudged manner.
And finally, this latest horrorshow>>>
I am not enraged by the gesture itself. Its a gesture which millions of kids myself included made when…a child. Insulting yes, moronic yes, but as a child not at all often played out of hatred or deep rooted racism. And China have far bigger problems to deal with that a braindead puerile gesture promoted by Juventus…such as the world’s most powerful military encircling them and the world’s most powerful propaganda machine pouring millions into anti CHINESE misinformation. Yet this is a puerile slur gesture making fun of the eyes and clothing of orientals as a whole, billions of people, and a market which we apparently are eager to tap.
What kind of culture is rampant at the club that the player, the coaching staff, the marketing team would all sign off on this to promote as part of their brand? It does not take a marketing expert to understand that this is probably not a good look for the club.
It just smacks of a complete absence of any class. As have all of the episodes briefly outlined above.
I am not calling for Agnelli’s head. Just stating my dismay for the perceived incompetence rampant at the club for some time now.
Back to the football…
The low key transfer activity continues to cause concern, and any hopes that Cherubini could bring about a clear change in direction have presently vanished. For we remain unable to rid ourselves of many players who have proven year upon year they are not of the required calibre. There are obvious reasons why Pellegrini, De Sciglio, Rugani were all kicked back towards us. They have not impressed at much weaker clubs. And Cherubini should really be working overtime to ensure their departure from the payroll and squad. Maybe he is, but the problem is we have zero reference point for him pulling off any sterling work. As like with Pirlo, he has zero experience in the exact role he has been given.
Nothing of any value can be taken from the run-out against Barca. And I retain firm belief that Max has enough quality and nous even with the current squad to get us back to the top of Serie A by Christmas, though it may take some time. We do retain the nucleus of probably the strongest squad in the league. Even with the dross.
Pjanic seems sloth moving back towards Turin. With the Locatelli deal still not quite finished with in either direction it could go.
Perhaps Kaio Jorge can be the extra striker as it does seem odd to imagine he will have moved to then be loaned out to a weaker side or play in the third tier with the U23s. Elsewhere we are fine, just really need a boost in the middle of the park where Ramsey is no answer to the DM issue.
We really are stretched for cash. When a club needs hundreds of millions to bail them out of their debts, the situation is very serous indeed. And evidently, the club is able to continue without any major sales which we should be thankful for but also then understand more why we are struggling to make any key signings. The squad is already in the red and faith must be shown in Max to pull us all together and make the best out of what we have in the ranks. On this score I have great faith.
If we are lucky, we will somehow through hook and crook bring in Locatelli, who should finally offer a solid central base to the side. All over the field we have quality and I hope a far few can roll back on their criticisms of Bentancur who I expect to return to solid, hopefully prosper this season. Add to this the healthy competition in most other areas and we should be fine…