AC Milan has spent £161.08 million this season. The club is looking to regain its place as a top club in Europe. But will this spending only help the club temporarily or can they have another golden era?
With £161million spent on players, you would think AC Milan would have made some impressive signings, and they have.
The largest fee they have spent is £35.7 million when they brought Leonardo Bonucci in from Serie A champions Juventus. It’s one hell of a signing. Bonucci was an enforcer at the back for Juventus last season. Juventus only conceded seven goals in last years Champions League, only conceding three before the final. Bonucci was key to this defensive record. AC Milan has signed one of the best centre-backs in the world for a good fee. He may be old but his ability is undoubted.
The other signings are André Silva from FC Porto (£32.3 million), Andrea Conti from Atalanta (£21.25 million), Hakan Calhanoglu from Bayer Leverkusen (£18.7 million), Mateo Musacchio from Villarreal CF (£15.3 million), Ricardo Rodríguez from VfL Wolfsburg (£15.3 million), Lucas Biglia from SS Lazio (£14.45 million), Franck Kessié from Atalanta BC (two-year loan with £17.5 million clause to make the signing permanent), Antonio Donnarumma from Asteras Tripolis (£1.28 million) and Fabio Borini from Sunderland (one year loan with £5.1 million clause to make the transfer permanent).
All of these signings add quality and depth to AC Milan’s squad. Vincenzo Montella, AC Milan manager, has a great team at his disposal and should be able to finish comfortably in the top four in Serie A. These signings add experience to the club famous for its academy players over the years, such as Maldini and more recently Donnarumma.
Can the signings bring long term success to the club
Yes, they can. I know I stated that they added experience to the squad, but some of the younger players signed have already played in the European competitions (the Champions League and Europa League). This shows the calibre of young talent AC Milan has attracted.
André Silva is a prime example. For FC Porto last season he scored four and assisted two in eight games in the Champions League. Contributing six times in eight games is impressive for a player in his prime, and stunning for a 21-year-old.
At AC Milan, players like Silva will flourish due to the amount of game time given to them and also due to the clubs coaching staff that are good at developing young players. If they can keep hold of these young players, AC Milan may not need to invest heavily for seasons to come as these players will hit their prime.
This summer spending splurge may set the club up for a long time to come with only moderate spending needed in coming seasons to replace the ageing players. Also, the academy at AC Milan is still a useful asset to have. If utilised, this can provide Milan with all the young talent they need. This can allow the club to just spend on players that are already in the prime of their careers. Reducing the number of young signings made can help the club become economically stable and pass financial fair play. If this structure is implemented, the club could see continuing success for the next decade.
How will AC Milan fair this season?
If AC Milan qualifies for the Europa League, through the playoffs, I can see them progressing to the latter stages of the competition. Milan should target getting to the semi-finals as a minimum expectation. Their squad is more than capable of playing in the Champions League so they should beat most teams in the lesser competition.
In the league, the only team better on paper than Milan is the reigning champions of Serie A, Juventus. They are still better than Milan as their squad is established and got to the final of the Champions League the last two seasons. This shows what AC Milan are up against.
Apart from Juventus, I don’t see many clubs that can rival Milan with their new squad. I predict AC Milan to finish second or third in Serie A this season, getting in the Champions league spot or a playoff spot for the Champions League.
Hopefully, AC Milan can rebuild as they have been through a rough patch. No one likes watching such a historic club crumble.