Torino Striker Andrea Belotti vs Milan
Andrea Belotti had a breakout season last year helping Torino nearly make it into Europe. Andrea Belotti set the league on fire a few seasons ago. Since that breakout season, he really has failed to live up to the hype that was put on his shoulders during that time period. However last season he broke through scoring 17 goals in the league leading Torino to a 7th place finish which was their highest in many years. He has developed that consistency that he seemed to lack the last few seasons and has continually displayed how great he can be. He has come through in some of the biggest moments for his team in crucial situations. He is a player that now is one of the best at his position without question. He still has age on his side and it’s relatively Young he can be a really productive player as he continues to improve and develop into a special player. Torino has had a strong start & Andrea Belotti has played a part in that. Against AC Milan in a match where Milan had momentum for a good portion of the game got them back into position not only to get a point but to win the game. Milan had a 1-0 lead going into the second half and looked like they were going to add to it but Andrea Belotti came through late in the game to turn the match on its head. Andrea Belotti equalized with a strike from the center of the box that was pushed in it to the top corner. Just a few minutes later Andre Bellotti struck again with an acrobatic tap in after being set up by Simone ZaZa. Within the span of four minutes, he scored two goals and stole three points from Milan. He has Torino into the top half of the table yet again as they are poised to put together another run at Europe after only just missing out in the Europa League playoff round to Wolves. He was one of the best performers this week the context of the way he came through for his team. Andrea Bellotti is one of the best strikers in this league he is finally living up to the hype that was put on him when he had a breakout season a few years ago. He’s starting to perform at a high level somewhat regularly he’s got that consistency that he didn’t have in the early part of his career. Andrea Belotti is only going to continue to improve and progress into a player coaches will plan for him that’s how talented he is and he is really starting to show how good he can actually be Torino needed him to be great and he was more than great he showed that they can rely on him an absolutely breathtaking performance in a come-from-behind win for Torino.
Atalanta striker Duvan Zapata vs Roma
Last season duvan Zapata was the best player in Italian football. Anyone who watched the games and looked at the data came to that conclusion. He was the driving force of a Cinderella story as Atalanta finished third in a Champions League place. I elected him as a performer of the week on more occasions than any other player in Italian football during the 38 Game season. Some people speculated we would see some regression from the Columbian. Largely because he hasn’t scored the multitude and volume of goals at any point of his career as he did last season. This year is only to continue that rise. He is still is one of the best players in all of Italian football and on any given day one of the most physically imposing Strikers in the league. It doesn’t matter whether or not he scores goals are not the way he can impact the game in every way makes him such an explosive and antagonizing player to control and stop. Duvan Zapata already has four goals this season He thrives in big moments. I think to a certain extent he proves that Napoli made a mistake by letting him go. He was one of the best performers in all of Italy this week. He is likely to be acknowledged for this more this season Duvan Zapata did not start the game this week he came off the bench. You really can’t ask the Columbian to do anymore he came off the bench and won the game for them. When he checked into the game I knew there was a good possibility this is over. The effectiveness of a player does not depend on stats his impact on the game whether he scores or not he is incredibly crucial. He’s starting to gain a reputation of scoring against the biggest teams in Italy. Last season he scored against Lazio, Roma, Juventus, Inter, and Napoli. He is one of the biggest performers when the stakes are highest. He is still one of the best players in the league & the argument could be made that he is one of Europe’s best at his position as well. He is in for another season with 20 + goals he is just that good. Roma was on the receiving end instant impact from the Columbian they haven’t been the first and they won’t be the last this season.
Cagliari Goalkeeper Robin Olson vs Napoli
Robin Olsen struggled when he made his move to Roma last season. He couldn’t handle the pressure and there were moments in which there were anger and frustration he eventually lost his position as Roma starting goalkeeper. That was last season he is a completely different type of player this year. He made a loan move to Cagliari this summer to replace Alessio Cragno after he picked up an injury that will keep him sidelined for the majority of the season. My assessment on Robin Olsen is the same he is a very strong and productive keeper he just wasn’t good enough for Roma given expectations that are on the club consistently. On Cagliari this season he has been absolutely wonderful showing repeatedly glimpses of what we saw last season in certain moments. This week he was one of the best performers in all of Italian football. He had a challenge on his hands when his Cagliari side took a visit to the San Paulo in Naples to take on one of the title favorites Napoli. The team with explosive weapons all over the place. Napoli dominated the game and it looked like they were on the verge of scoring almost repeatedly. The Swedish goalkeeper was absolutely tremendous making big saves in important moments. Cagliari provided nothing offensively for the majority of the game and Olson kept them in the game even when it was not deserved. Robin Olson may not be a regular occurrence on this list but this weekend he showed some incredible abilities whether or not he can show this consistency regularly is yet to determine. I honestly hope he can live up to the expectations Roma did get themselves a better keeper but nonetheless, Robin Olsen has displayed great development this season. Against Napoli, with an attack that is as a mouth-watering as any, he kept Caglalri in the game and by the stroke of luck Cagliari ended up scoring a late winner on their only shot of the game. Napoli came at them with everything counter-attack from the wing anticipation Inside the Box every which way they tried to break them down but Robin Olsen made exceptional decisions denying Napoli with some really big saves throughout the duration of the game. After that performance, I had no choice but to recognize the Swedish goalkeeper as one of the performers of the week.
Donkey Of the Week: AC MILAN
The donkey of the week without question goes to AC Milan I honestly do not even know where to start with them. From a historical perspective, AC Milan is one of the most iconic football clubs in the history of the sport. They have won the Champions League on more occasions than any other club in Italy. They have shown why they are so highly regarded. However, those days are so far away I don’t know even know where to begin. Last season they just missed out on Champions League football on the last day of the Season. There was nothing special about them but they did well enough to get into position to make the Champions League. Inter Milan and AC Milan have both struggled significantly over the last several years it to a certain extent were hard to separate which club has better than the other. However, it’s not even close anymore Antonio Conte has changed Inter Milan. Inter Milan have won five consecutive derbies against AC Milan last weekend they were absolutely smashed. Inter Milan quite honestly could have scored several more goals. This entire team is a disaster. After Gattuso left there was some hope that Gianpolo would be able to change things simply put things have gotten worse. They got rid of players that truly could have helped them this season. Meanwhile, none of the signings that they made in the summer made any sense and that was proven. Their star player from last year seems like you can’t score anything other than penalties. They are unmotivated uninterested and aren’t even a good team this team is average. There’s no way this team gets into Europe Giampaolo could lose his job if things don’t change immediately. This last weekend was embarrassing. They had a lead against to Torino away from home with 20 minutes to go and they let Andrea Belotti hit them twice in the mouth winning the match for Torino. There is not a single game this season in which they have been me better team. You look down some of the teams they lost to in the way they performed in wins it has just been an absolute embarrassing display this season. For the way they folded against they earned themselves a donkey of the week but they’re getting this because they deserve this they have been absolutely atrocious and I don’t see a way in which this changes. They have some serious issues to figure out and I’m not sure there is a real solution that can be solved in the short-term. AC Milan quite honestly falls out of European football for the next several seasons this project is too massive.