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Thread: The Campagnaro Conundrum

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    The Campagnaro Conundrum

    I don’t think it’s a topic of contention that our defense suffers with the absence of Campagnaro. He offers necessary qualities for the success of Mazzarri’s tactics, maintaining the chemistry while increasing overall productivity in the backline. Another helpful asset is his positional sense and awareness, often playing in a relatively advanced position on the pitch, offering an extra man to the attack.

    Before I get to the problem itself, let’s take a look at our available centre halves:

    Available CBs Ball playing
    Hugo Campagnaro
    Andrea Ranocchia
    Rolando Pires Fonseca
    Juan Guillerme Jesus
    Marco Andreolli
    Walter Samuel
    Hugo Campagnaro
    Juan Guillerme Jesus

    The only genuinely ball playing CBs in this selection of defenders are Campagnaro and Juan Jesus, and one can come to the simple conclusion that we’re suffering from a lack of depth in that department.

    Note the general characterization of a ball playing CB possessing very strong short and long range passing abilities, as well as some proficiency in dribbling. Usually the best players in this role also possess a unique ability to read the game, preventing their advanced position from opening up too much space for the opposition.

    The modern centre back is a very unique player, possessing a blend of defensive solidity and assurance in possession. Defenders and midfielders have developed partnerships, leading to the emergence of teams that are very comfortable in possession. The mould of a ball playing CB is vital to any team, but not many players can fulfill this role effectively, a testament to how underrated Campagnaro really is.

    In Mazzarri's interpretation of a 3 man defence, the RCB and LCB are ball playing, linking up with the midfielders, and adopting a role of a destroyer cum regista, responsible for both defensive protection and distributing balls to the wings.

    Last year Stramaccioni attempted to deploy Ranocchia as a RCB in a ball-playing role, but he lacks the composure on the ball, ability to read the game, and long range passing abilities that are necessary for an effective player in such a position.

    Rolando has been similarly used as a ball playing CB in the absence of Campagnaro, but it is clear as day he is best in the sweeper position, and that he similarly cannot fill the shoes of the Argentine veteran.

    Also keep in mind that Campagnaro is 33 years of age, so there are injury concerns, and it is improbable he’ll be able to keep up his performances in the next 1-2 years.

    My solution: purchase a replacement that can be alternated (to lower the risk of injuries), so Campagnaro’s absence won’t affect the quality and performance of the starting lineup

    Our defensive prospects on loan don’t offer enough on the ball skills imo (only Bianchetti fits the bill as a genuine ball playing CB tbh).

    We’ve been linked to Kurt Zouma recently, but he lacks any decent technique on the ball, and his presence on our bench would undoubtedly stagger his development and waste our initial investment. He would also be best as left CB or sweeper, so he wouldn't offer any sort of solution to our problem. His long passing is also one of his worst attributes, and his style is anything but ball playing.

    Ezequiel Garay of Benfica would be my first choice target, but given his understandably astronomical transfer fee, it’s an unrealistic option.

    However, I would not be disappointed with a move for Brazilian centre back Dedé of Cruzeiro. We’ve been heavily linked to him in the past. He’s quite an athletic defender, possessing very impressive pace and lots of physical strength. He also offers superb technical skills and a fine ability to read the game. He would likely be available for a fee in the region of 10 million euros.

    I’d like to hear from the opinion of the forum on whether or not this is a legitimate problem, and if my solution would be effective in resolving our conundrum (given its existence).

    Keep in mind that investment in the midfield and wings would occur before an improvement in the defence, so my solution wouldn’t interfere with developing other areas of the squad that require immediate attention.
    Last edited by pencilpal; 25 Oct 13 at 05:23.


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    Excellent article. Yet Dédé would cost way more then 10m. Given he only plays there since last year (?)

    I'd opt for Vermaelen. A leader who's on the bench at Arsenal. He'd likely come for 8-10m and would really want to come so he can stay in sight for the WC.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KevinB View Post
    Excellent article. Yet Dédé would cost way more then 10m. Given he only plays there since last year (?)

    I'd opt for Vermaelen. A leader who's on the bench at Arsenal. He'd likely come for 8-10m and would really want to come so he can stay in sight for the WC.
    Vermaelen wouldn't be a poor choice for the sweeper position, but I doubt he would be effective in a pure ball playing role

    From what I've seen of him (not much tbh) he lacks the long passing ability characteristic of players like Campagnaro, and I believe he's been quite inconsistent for Arsenal lately

    And Vertonghen would be closer to the player we need, if we're talking about Belgian defenders.

    I don't think Dedé would cost more than 10 million euros tbh; he would be a very strong investment for our youth project (25 is quite young for a CB)

    - - - Updated - - -

    I also believe that Wenger just recently reiterated that Vermaelen isn't exiting the club, so I would rule that out

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    Good post.

    Bianchetti is very good on the ball; his long pass to assist Immobile in the summer was outstanding. The key is to get him playing regularly, even if it means terminating his loan at Verona and arranging guarenteed game time at a Serie B club for the rest of the season.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ManchesterInterista View Post
    Bianchetti is very good on the ball; his long pass to assist Immobile in the summer was outstanding. The key is to get him playing regularly, even if it means terminating his loan at Verona and arranging guarenteed game time at a Serie B club for the rest of the season.
    I considered him when writing this post, but he wouldn't solve the problem I outlined in my article

    One, because he hasn't shown enough at club level to justify this kind of faith

    Two, because we need a vice-Campagnaro immediately, so he's not an option imo

    Remember that he isn't even one of our best center halves on loan; I rate Pasa and Benedetti far above him tbh (would've included Caldirola here as well)

    But he needs consistent playing time, and it doesn't seem Mandorlini has enough faith in him this year (compared to last season)

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    Campagnaro seems to be VERY injury prone, and tbh this is probably the last season he can be an integral part of a European team; I doubt we'll be able to rely on him next year

    So at this point I would be completely willing to spend 15 million on Garay tbh

    Quality, especially in the defence, will always come at a price. Remember, we spent a similar amount on a 25 year old Samuel, and that was surely a bargain.

    When I mentioned Dede, it was because I had rotation in mind, but given Campagnaro's physical state, I have doubts about his ability to be a consistent member of the starting lineup

    - - - Updated - - -

    Yanga Mbiwa could be a MUCH more affordable option, but I don't see him on the same level as Garay tbh

    Same with Dede, although the Brazilian is wonderfully suited to the RCB position

    We need a world class CB at Inter, and the Benfica centre half should be a target imo

    The transfer fee will repay itself tbh

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    well Garay is argie so Inter definitely has a chance of signing
    on a serious note, i'd love to have him here. I think he'd help out rano alot and cover his ass if he makes a mistake

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    Quote Originally Posted by Suraj View Post
    well Garay is argie so Inter definitely has a chance of signing
    on a serious note, i'd love to have him here. I think he'd help out rano alot and cover his ass if he makes a mistake
    Garay would be excellent, but my only concern is the financial viability

    THat is, if Thohir has the money, but from my perspective it's a very important signing to make (given Campagnaro's physical state being injury prone)

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    How is Campagnaro VERY injury prone?
    Quote Originally Posted by Pimpin View Post
    you can all go fuck your mohters, just my 2 cents.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dylan View Post
    How is Campagnaro VERY injury prone?


    - - - Updated - - -

    He's had at least one major injury every season with Napoli

    And he's only played in 5 games with Inter compared to a possible 11; he's been injured for 3-4 weeks now, which is quite surprising considering it's been fairly early in the Serie A season

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    Campa, with major injury every season in Napoli?

    He has never been out for more than 2-3 weeks nor having constant small injuries often. In fact, i dont remember him having serious injury in Napoli.

    Last year he played 28 matches in Serie A, considering was on the bench in the last 4 games. De Laurentis said it's small injury, but i bet that it was because he already signed with Inter. He missed 2 or 3 games due to suspension. That makes him missing 3 to 4 games due to injuries entire season, and never for more than 2 weeks of absence.

    2 years ago, he didn't have any injury, playing 31 game and 8 in CL. In the Cup too. He was absent almost every game before CL game, so that's why he doesn't have all games played.

    3 years ago. similar story. 31 game, 2 out with suspension, rested before some EL games, one game missed due to injury.

    4 years ago, 28 games played only, was absent for 6 consecutive games due to injury at the beginning of the season, similar to now, and the last two. The rest he was on the bench.

    He did have some problems during his Samp days tho, so i get what you mean by injury prone. He ain't Zanetti. But he ain't Recoba as well. I wouldn't say he is injury prone.
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    First fact to consider is his age. He is 33 years old, which is quite old tbh, and he's been injured for MUCH of the season so far

    Therefore I would doubt his CURRENT physical health, as well as the probability of him being able to start all of our matches this season

    He's always had consistent 2-3 week injury issues with Napoli every season, but admittedly it did get MUCH better since his days with Sampdoria, but judging from his age and current record of attendance on the pitch (due to injury), I think there MAY be a serious risk of injuries for the Argentine veteran

    Ofc it won't be at the magnitude of someone like Recoba, that was truly madness tbh

    - - - Updated - - -

    Nonetheless a replacement is very important to consider

    We've really been hurt by Campagnaro's absence, and I'd attribute it to a distinct lack of depth in our ball playing CBs, something which should be addressed in the mercato tbh

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    So two or three times he's been injured for 2-3 weeks at a time since he joined Napoli and one injury this season. He's hardly what you can call injury prone. Age has nothing to do with him being called injury prone, if you wanna call him injury prone then you'll have to call quite a large chunk of Inter injury prone.

    Also, no need for the , I mean, you're the one who's made up these ''major injuries'' that he had ''every season'' at Napoli.
    Quote Originally Posted by Pimpin View Post
    you can all go fuck your mohters, just my 2 cents.

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    Perhaps my definition of injury prone is different from yours. I'm not attempting to imply a Recoba-esque tendency to attain injuries, rather that he seems to be much more at RISK at getting injuries.

    Moreover that risk has been transforming into loss (from what I've seen of his Inter career so far).

    I honestly doubt he will be injury free for the rest of the season (once he recovers from his current injuries), especially because he's 33.

    From my perspective, an injury lasting a month is fairly serious tbh, especially when our team's defence AND offence, as well as its balance and organization suffers in the absence of the injured player. I've already outlined the paramount importance of a ball playing CB to the success of Mazzarri's tactics, and if we really want to contend for CL, we NEED to prioritize the acquisition of a Campagnaro replacement.

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    On the topic of ball playing CB... I was board and started searching through WhoScored Brazilian league statics and found that Sao Paulo's Rodrigo Caio had a monster season, specially once he moved to CB to replaced Lucio who was sent to train away form the squad.

    3.5 tackles per game, 2.4 interceptions per game, 2.4 aerial duels won per game, 0.7 blocked shots per game, 46.4 passes per game 88.8 percent of which were successful.

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