It took him a while to gain an acceptable physical level following his sentimental decision to move back to Cagliari after Inter kicked him to the curb, but he has been uncontainable once he hit his stride.
Back to the position, no. 10, where he had the most success during his carreer, especially in Rome, he detonated in the three November matches, gaining 16 fantasy points and exploding against Fiorentina, where he accumulated ten thanks to a goal and three assists.
He put on a show there, especially on counters, masterfully setting up three different teammates, Marko Rog, Giovanni Simeone and Joao Pedro, with delicious passes and capping it off with a missile, leading the way to a 5-2 romp. He added two more points in the previous game fixture to a clean sheet in a difficult road match-up against Atalanta and then scored again in the Lecce game. He kept it up in the first December tilt, hitting the net again from downtown and providing another helper.
Despite the slow start, he has already collected 27 points this season, a haul that has him ranked fifth among midfielders, only behind the teammate Pedro, Lazio’s Joaquin Correa and Luis Alberto and Alejandro Gomez, so surely the cream of the crop fantasy-wise in that position.
He and Joao Pedro have been the main driving force behind the Sardinian’s early season push as they are riding a 12-game undefeated streak and have displayed an immense amount of character and determination, with the comeback against Sampdoria serving as the latest example.
Cagliari are currently in fourth position and will likely be serious contenders for a European spot throughout the whole season. Signing him surely raised the ceiling, but also the profile of the club and his coach Rolando Maran raved about him as recently as yesterday: “He is incredible, he can read games as few others are capable of and he is point of reference for everybody. It is a bliss to see him playing, he is incredibly involved. He is in top condition, I can not explain why he is not playing in Champions League, it is insane.”
He is vociferous and has often been labelled as a trouble-maker and that would not have flied under the discipline-based approach of Antonio Conte, but he never lacked effort on the pitch and the Nerazzurri could have surely used somebody performing at this level seeing their lack of depth in the midfield.
Join the most popular Fantasy Serie A game here: www.fantasyseriea.com