Friday saw a little bit of Italian history made, as Serie A side Inter Milan secured the capture of versatile winger Tajon Buchanan from Belgian Pro League side, Club Brugges, and in doing so the 24 year old became the first Canadian to ply their trade in the Italian top flight.
With 35 full international caps to his name for his country, and having started all three of their group games at the recent 2022 World Cup, he reportedly comes into the San Siro Stadium for a fee believed to be seven million Euros (with three million in add on clauses), and he has signed a four and a half year deal with the side.
“I’m really proud to be the first Canadian to play in the Italian league, it’s a great achievement. I’ve been following Inter for a long time, it’s a team I see myself in, I’m really excited about what awaits me.”
He will undoubtedly be a new name for many supporters of Serie A clubs, and it stands to reason that he may well take a bit of time to settle in, and Inter fans may not see the best of him until the 2024/25 campaign, or nor where he may be best suited to playing. Across his career so far he has both featured regularly at right wing, or in the full back spot as he seems to prefer the opposite side of the pitch, but he is also more than capable of playing on the opposite flank, or even through the middle.
Inter moved quickly to get a deal done this month as Manchester City had also apparently expressed their interest in his services, but given his aforementioned versatility, it is no surprise to read that some in the media compare his future to that of Croatian international Ivan Perisic.
At least to begin with, his breakthrough at the San Siro is likely to be more of a defensive role as many believe that he is the more immediate back up for the injured Juan Cuadrado who is set for roughly a three month spell on the side lines having picked up an Achilles injury that ultimately required surgery.
When Cuadrado returns, whether fans of the Nerazzurri then see him deployed in a more offensive roll is open for debate, but it does seem likely in the future given his spell at Brugge, mainly defensive in the 2023/24 campaign saw 67 games, five goals and 12 assists. Three of those goals and four of those assists came in 20 games this season from the full back position.