A word of warning to English clubs considering a bid for any of Juventus’s disgraced stars: Italian footballers don’t travel well. They’re pampered mamma’s boys who never stray too far from the comforts of home. A case in point: Gianluigi Buffon could cherry-pick a Premiership or Primera Liga club, but instead he wants to move to AC Milan, who are banned from next season’s Champions League. Alessandro Del Piero, meanwhile, is set to stay at Juventus. Where’s the ambition? Why not try a season in England or Spain?
The Serie A sale: why Italian imports are a waste of money continuedâ€¦
If you do succeed in enticing an Italian footballer to leave the warm bosom of his homeland, there’s a very good chance they’ll underperform away from Italy â€“ not to mention the fact that they’ll be wanting a quick return to Serie A when Juve et al have served their time. Can you imagine the look on Del Piero’s face as he sat on the subs’ bench away at Middlesbrough in Februaryâ€¦
Name five Italian imports who have succeeded at the highest level in British football? You’ll struggle. Yes, there’s cheeky Gianfranco Zola, but after that the cupboard is bare.
So put away your chequebooks, Premiership chairmen â€“ you’d be mad to waste your money on an Italian, World Cup-winners or not.