Could have fooled me
You, brk and spin force lost their shit when folks said that this mercato was a failure. Still recall some of you mocking people for believing media reports that we will have around $50m or so to spend, because apparently media bullshits a lot and spin force knows better.
And lets not even discuss the convulated theories as to why it was completely normal to wait until the last day to renew a management that just won a scudetto or why a team cant spend due to being in the process of a takeover (despite the fact that the takeover was certain to happen and Chelsea just dissproved that theory).
Also, cool - lets not pay Kessie what he wants because it would be too expensive in the long run. But what made you so sure that we are so willing to spend a lump sum on getting a replacement now? I mean, are you really that naive to think that management would go on and spend around 60 or so odd million it would take the players we let go?
Also, Kessie may have had a poor start to the season but he was clutch for us in the second half of the season. No matter how much you try and deny that. Even a blind man could see how important his characteristics was in our overall game plan and that it wouldnt be that easy to replace him, not unless we spend a significant amount (which we were NEVER going to do).
I also seem to recall you staning the Kalulu-Tomori defence and criticising anyone doubting their effectiveness in the long run. After all, didnt you just want a mere backup hence why you were not a fan of Botman?
I was sure we were going to spend close to 100m and I still think it was clearly possible because of the savings we made. I didn't expect a title winning side to reduce their squad costs even more. Already said this many times. I'm still hopeful that we will spend a lot this coming summer. If we don't, then something is very wrong and i'd have to rethink my expectation of what the owners' ambition actually is. I'm excusing this past summer for the reasons you outlined, whether they're true or not. We had the summer we got and we decided to go for mostly more young players to develop.
I'm still adamant our problems right now are not market related. Pioli has the solutions to play the way he wants but he's trying to be insane and stubborn.
If it's a crazy packed season, don't play the same 11 all the time. If you only have Giroud, don't play a high press. If you only have Tata, don't play a high line. If your midfield is out of form and is outnumbered, play another midfielder. These are basic tactical and coaching errors that he keeps repeating over and over and over again. This same Pioli with Botman, or with Enzo or with Haaland will still be making the same mistakes if he's this stubborn.
He'd rather keep forcing his 'style' rather than admit that it's not working. Our problems right now really are rooted in this avoidance of being pragmatic for once. It's like he tried the 352 once and decided 'nope, that's it, no more experimenting for me!' and proceeded to play the same 11 five games in a row including a disastrous cup final. No amount of summer spending would have saved this. Kessie wouldn't have saved this. Kessie worked because our midfield worked as a unit, Hakan does a LOT more work than Brahim, and he passes a LOT better than Brahim. Our midfield without Hakan only worked when we had a physical AM like Krunic in front of the double pivot. This should have been a fact that Pioli understood by now. We can't play Brahim, Leao, Giroud and Messias and expect to press, or expect them to track back and cover the midfield. Marusic was doubling up on Dest every time the had the ball, Leao barely tracked back. Giroud was pressing at a jogging pace. Messias lost his guy countless times, including for the all important first goal. Brahim was back to his confused and erratic self. They've been like this all January, but Pioli keeps playing them again and again hoping to prove to someone that he was right all along.
When the basics are working, then yeah a better market would have helped take us to the next level. I wanted Botman, Renato, CDK and a bunch of other players last summer. I know we need to upgrade to improve, but the squad is much, much better than what we've seen recently. The rot is not because of how the squad was built, it's because of how it was handled.
Are Adli, Vranckx, CDK, Thiaw really so bad that we had to push our starters to play virtually every minute of a season where we're playing almost every three days? I don't think so. That's bad rotation planning. His solution is to 'work harder' meaning run more, so even more risk of injury. Maldini says we're building with young players, but how will they develop if they're not playing?
Adli, Vranckx and Thiaw played a combined 397 minutes all season. I don't understand this.
The players they could have rotated with, Tomori, Tonali and Bennacer played a combined 6128 minutes.
This is insane.
CDK has had enough time, but even then the way he was used was incorrect. He threw him right into the 11 before he had time to adapt until the fans and media turned on him and he lost his confidence and then proceeded to not start him since October.