Another Serie A season done, and another host of signings that didn’t work out.
Clubs have to make judgement calls at the beginning of the season, make signings in a bid to improve their teams, they take a gamble here and there hoping they pay off. Some do, but, unfortunately, some do not.
Here were take a look at 10 of the worst signings in the 2018/19 Serie A campaign.
Gonzalo Higuain – AC Milan
If Milan had to crept into the Champions League spots on the final day of the season, they would have one man to thank. That man is Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri.
If it weren’t for the former Napoli man swooping in and relieving them of the burden that was Gonzalo Higuain they would, in all likelihood, not have gone on to sign Krzysztof Piatek and they probably wouldn’t have propelled themselves up the table in the fashion that they have.
Amidst much fanfare, Milan secured the loan signing of Higuain from Juventus for a sizeable fee of €18 million last August, with an option to sign him permanently for €36 million in the summer.
Although he began relatively brightly, scoring throughout September and October, the now 31-year-old went two months without scoring and suffered a meltdown when he got sent off against his former side, Juventus, in a game in which he also missed a penalty. Whoopsie.
Him seeing red, figuratively and literally, will be what lives on in the memory of Milan fans of his time at the club as it petered out with a whimper and, eventually, they shipped him out to Chelsea.
Robin Olsen – Roma
Robin Olsen was signed as part of the Monchi overhaul to fill the ginormous Allisson shaped void left behind following the Brazilian’s move to Liverpool.
Monchi, who was installed as Roma’s new sporting director, well known for his shrewd acquisitions, signed the Swede to the surprise of many from Danish side FC Copenhagen. At the time he was purchased, Olsen was 28-years of age and had played for clubs which included Malmo and PAOK.
Hardly a who’s who of elite sides. But had Monchi unearthed another gem, another talent that has spent his whole career flying under the radar?
No, to put it bluntly. Olsen, compared to Alisson, has been an unmitigated failure. Though this is not solely down to the goalkeeper, after 38 games last season, Roma had conceded just 28 goals. After 38 games this campaign, they have conceded almost double that in 48. That’s not great reading whichever way you look at it.
One could go into vast details comparing the differences between Olsen and his predecessor, but quite frankly one is World Class and one is decidedly average.