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I think Ramos and Boateng are two of the best CBs in the world (albeit highly flawed), but I disagree with Sule's assessment of them being better than Bonucci and Chiellini (or even Barzagli tbh).

That said, I think Sule's comments on Italy aren't unfair, there's little doubt that Italy isn't the footballing nation it's traditionally been in recent years and there's no doubt that Inter and Milan aren't exactly in the best states. If in his shoes, I'd probably be thinking something quite similar and I'd make England my target destination. The money's there, the marketing potential is huge and as a competition it's reputation today is probably at the top given the number of high profile teams and number of managers recognised world wide. I'm not saying it's the best league, but if I'm player who wants world wide recognition, money and wants to be considered at the top, I'd probably choose England or maybe Spain if Real or Barca are interested.
I wouldn't have said that they are in decline though.. They had been, but I think its fair to say that both teams are on the rise now.. We're in a CL spot and expecting new owners, and Merda have a team full of star players and big signings.. Teams like Roma & Napoli have gained considerable strength too and compete amongst the best, meanwhile Juventus is always going far in CL. I'd say we are far better than Bundesliga and have much more potential to continue, and to be fair someone who is a professional footballer should know better, football is made of cycles.
The richer and bigger teams are few and their number will fall not rise, Real and co will not have a squad bigger than 25-30 so even if you are good enough eventually you have little choice, if you make it sure of course but it's not easy.
As for EPL just because a smaller team in the EPL can pay salary that Milan can't doesn't make them more attractive either, if a footballer thinks that way he is not thinking as a footballer. I think it is a myth that as a footballer playing for a midtable EPL team vs a midtable Serie A is better for you, in footballing terms I mean not $$$.
(12-13-2016, 06:15 PM)WCmilan Wrote: [ -> ]I wouldn't have said that they are in decline though.. They had been, but I think its fair to say that both teams are on the rise now.. We're in a CL spot and expecting new owners, and Merda have a team full of star players and big signings.. Teams like Roma & Napoli have gained considerable strength too and compete amongst the best, meanwhile Juventus is always going far in CL. I'd say we are far better than Bundesliga and have much more potential to continue, and to be fair someone who is a professional footballer should know better, football is made of cycles.

I don't know I'd necessarily agree. I mean looking from the outside in, you're looking at years of mismanagement at both Inter and Milan. In Milan's case, the sale and new ownership is yet to take place, in the case of Inter they've finally been sold and thus far the new ownership aren't impressing anyone, if anything they've been a bit of a disaster with how things have been managed. We might be having a decent season, but it's far too early to say we're on the right path whereas Inter are having a disaster of a year and have only just started showing any signs of recovery (too early to tell if it's actually the case, never mind Pioli is clearly a stop gap solution).

I don't really agree about Roma and Napoli either. Roma have the ability to compete with the best, but they rarely fulfill that at the highest level. That's why they never leave any mark in CL (unless you're talking about 7-1 defeats). Napoli on the other hand do good things in CL, but they've yet to show they're of the highest level and right now, I'd say they're a team that's probably around the level of a Sevilla or Lyon, basically quite a big team, but not seen as a European elite nor is it the most marketable name around (i.e. a team like City might have done pretty much nothing in CL, but with the Premier League brand and financial might behind them, they will be much more appealing to the casual fans).

Juve are the one exception, they have history, they are competitive and they have been the most progressive club in Italy for a number of years now. However, they alone can't do it all.

Ultimately, I think Italy is maybe around as competitive as the German league when comparing sporting quality, but there's little denying that in terms that in terms of infrastructure and commercial success, Italy is behind Germany, England and Spain, even France in some places (I read in the US Ligue 1 is more watched than Serie A). That's the key thing here, football isn't just about sport anymore, it's a business where brand (not just clubs, but also leagues and competitions) marketability and commercial success are just as important now. 

In fact, I'd go as far as saying that the commercial factors are more important now and last year's Premiership race is the ideal example of this. In terms of sporting quality, I've seen even hardcore Premiership enthusiasts bemoan the lack of quality in the league last year, yet Leicester's success is widely regarded as one of the greatest underdog stories in sporting history. Whereas what Leicester did deserves massive plaudits, where the story really came into it's own was how well it was spun by Premiership marketing to be the fairy tale of football or the classic underdog story and it was sold this way worldwide, meaning they became a worldwide phenomena. Compare that with Hellas Verona's 84/85 Serie A title, a similar story of a massive underdog going on to win a league title. The commercial factor in the game was nothing close to what it is today back then, and no on other than people who watched the Italian game back then or hardcore Italian football fans will even know of that story.
January could be only:

Badelj Pavoletti in
Adriano Honda out
Kind of funny to see that same day there was a rumour that he prefers Milan.
Maybe we're taking Gabbiadini Big Grin
Luiz Adriano actually has admirers!

http://www.football-italia.net/95650/por...iz-adriano

A bidding war for him would be fine with me, so long as we can get more money for our own transfer dealings.
The bidding is probably Milan paying half his salary or a quarter of his salary Tongue