While the overall quality of this year’s relegated Serie A sides was relatively low, there are a number of individuals who undoubtedly have the quality to play next season in Italy’s top flight. With Parma and Empoli having already punched their tickets for a return to Serie A, here are a few players they could have their eyes to help ensure their returns to the top flight are not temporary.
Nicolas – Goalkeeper (Hellas Verona)
The Brazilian shot stopper and ex-Atlético Mineiro was one of the few bright spots in an incredibly underwhelming campaign for Hellas Verona. Nicolas led the Series A in saves with 169 while playing in front of the worst defences in the league. If any of the newly promoted sides are seeking a veteran goalkeeper with good instincts, an imposing physical stature at 191 cm (6’3″), and plenty of experience in Serie A, they should look no further than Nicolas.
Simy Nwankwo – Striker (Crotone)
Simy is one of Serie A’s biggest enigmas over the previous two seasons. The Nigerian arrived at Crotone in the summer of 2016 after a sensational season in Portugal’s second tier with Gil Vicente, where he scored 20 goals in the 2015/2016 campaign. However, the player struggled during his first season with Crotone, scoring only 3 goals. This season, though, the tall and lumbering Simy, who stands at a modest 198 cm (6’6″), showed the ability to find the back of net in various ways as he bagged 7 goals. He’s quick, especially for his height, and is an obvious aerial threat – he also has a penchant for scoring in big moments. With his second season in Italy in the books, it would behoove some clubs in Serie A to give the Nigerian a look.
Bruno Martella – Left back (Crotone)
Left-footed 25 year old left back Bruno Martella would be an incredible value option for mid-to-lower table Serie A sides who are looking for a versatile defender. Martella, who has been at Crotone since 2014, has the ability to play as a left back or a wing back and has very strong crossing ability. Martella was tied for the leader of assists for the Calabrian side and certainly has the ability to play a part in Serie A next season.
Romulo – Midfielder (Hellas Verona)
If it’s experience you’re looking for, look no further than former Fiorentina man Romulo. The Brazilian has been at Verona since 2014 and opted to remain with the club after they were relegated to Serie B following the 2015-2016 season. The midfielder, who also has the ability to play as a right back, has made over 100 appearances in Serie A and could greatly benefit a newly promoted or even a mid-table side looking to add a veteran presence to their midfield. While he isn’t flashy or technically gifted, Romulo still displays an impressive work-rate and should undoubtedly be picked up by a top tier side in Italy this summer.
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