Genoa went into the 2020/21 campaign after a disappointing 2019/20 season which saw the Grifone narrowly avoid relegation. Davide Ballardini made his return to the club in December 2020 and guided his side to an 11th-place finish.
Genoa picked up 11 wins, managed 12 draws, and lost 16 games on their way to securing a mid-table finish.
PLAYER OF THE SEASON: MATTIA DESTRO
The 30-year-old Italian, on loan from Bologna, had one of his best goal-scoring seasons since 2016/17. Destro made 29 appearances – seven of which were from the bench – he managed 11 goals and one assist.
The most notable performances came against one of his previous employers, AC Milan, where he grabbed a brace in the 2-2 draw during Round 12.
BEST SIGNING: MILAN BADELJ
The Croatian was a solid addition to Genoa’s midfield, where he brought his intelligence and superb range of passing to a side that had struggled previously. The central midfielder joined on a free after his unsuccessful spell with Lazio and last season, Fiorentina, where he spent the year on loan.
Despite being 32, he was on Genoa’s best performers and managed 29 appearances – one of which was from the bench – chipping in with one goal and four assists. He also picked up seven yellow cards.
THE COACHES: ROLANDO MARAN/DAVIDE BALLARDINI
Following last season where Genoa went through three different managers, Rolando Maran was hired from Cagliari but only lasted at the post until 20th December after a poor run of results.
Genoa decided to bring back Davide Ballardini for his third spell at the club and he steered his side to a mid-table finish.
MEMORABLE MOMENT: PANDEV BRACE
During Round 21 of the season, Genoa hosted Napoli. The 37-year-old Pandev – who was facing his former side – rolled back the years to bag a brace which gave Genoa a huge win.
The Grifone got their first win over Napoli in 18 meetings thanks to Pandev. He hadn’t scored since the opening game of the season and the Macedonian put in a fantastic display.
THE BAD: CONSISTENCY
Genoa were suspect of putting in brilliant performances against the so-called bigger clubs but struggled to get results against those around them in the table. Many fans would be forgiven for wondering “what if” about those results and where they could have been in the table come the end of the season.