Bari Positioning Itself for a Top Six Finish

by Robert on July 14, 2010 · 2 comments

Bari, a city on the heel of the Ital­ian boot, is an excel­lent mar­ket for Serie A and Ital­ian soc­cer and the type of club that should be a main­stay in Serie A.  The met­ro­pol­i­tan area is home to over 1.6 mil­lion Ital­ians and Sta­dio San Nicola was one of the mod­ern sta­di­ums built prior to the 1990 World Cup in Italy.  So the Gilletti’s pro­mo­tion to Serie A in 2009 was a finan­cial boon for Serie A, and the fans responded to the pro­mo­tion by aver­ag­ing more fans per game last sea­son than Juven­tus.  The club also per­formed well on the pitch, chal­leng­ing early in the year for a Euro­pean tour­na­ment spot before fin­ish­ing the sea­son in 10th place.

But like all smaller clubs who over­achieve and dis­play qual­ity tal­ent, Bari has been raided by the larger clubs.  Ris­ing star Leonardo Bonucci was sold to Juven­tus in a highly pub­li­cized move (for quite a sum of money), leav­ing a gap in the Bari back­line.  In addi­tion to the Azzurri defender, Bari also lost its sports direc­tor Gior­gio Per­inetti, who was instru­men­tal in com­pos­ing a ros­ter for a suc­cess­ful cam­paign despite the club los­ing its man­ager and going through a poten­tial sale in the first few months of the Serie A sea­son last year.

But new sports direc­tor Guido Angelozzi has imme­di­ately made his mark upon the squad.  In a move that is crit­i­cal to the team’s suc­cess, he nego­ti­ated a co-ownership deal with Udi­nese to retain top goal scorer Vitor Bar­reto, allow­ing Bari to retain its most pro­fi­cient offen­sive weapon.  In addi­tion, the club has refused to sell defender Andrea Ranoc­chia so far this off­sea­son.  Ranoc­chia was bril­liant next to Bonucci and is a poten­tial back­line con­trib­u­tor for the Azzurri in Euro 2012. Update: Looks like Bari needs another defender — Ranoc­chia taken back from loan by Genoa and is now co-owned by Genoa and Inter.

But stand­ing pat was not enough for this club; to off­set the losses suf­fered this off­sea­son the club needs to be active in the trans­fer market.

So far, Angelozzi and man­ager Giampiero Ven­tura have secured two play­ers to help the offense.  The first was Abdelka­der Ghez­zal from Siena.  Ghez­zal was last seen play­ing for Alge­ria in the World Cup, where he received a red card in the US match.  He is just bloom­ing as a player after strug­gling in Ligue 1 early in his career — last sea­son he scored five goals in twenty Serie A matches.  Bari gets Ghez­zal for two play­ers who were unlikely to be major con­trib­u­tors for next year’s squad.  The sec­ond player is mid­fielder Nico Pulzetti from rel­e­gated club Livorno.  Pulzetti had a down year in Serie A last year one sea­son after he was instru­men­tal to Livorno’s rise to Serie A.

And Bari may not yet be done.  ESPN is report­ing that Bari is pur­su­ing Sebas­t­ian Giovinco to boost their attack.  The mid­fielder is an up-and-coming star who was rel­e­gated to the bench for most of last sea­son, but has excelled on the Ital­ian Olympic team as well as the U-21 side.  “Formica Atom­ica” is a future mem­ber of the Azzurri who will excel if given the oppor­tu­nity to direct the Gilletti attack with Ghez­zal, Bar­reto, and Edgar Alvarez.

The club could use another defender to pair with Cris­t­ian Stellini and Sal­va­tore Masiello.  They can­not replace a Bonucci, but another cen­ter back would go a long way to main­tain­ing their qual­ity defend­ing in front of Jean-Francois Gillet.  This is an impor­tant sea­son for the Gilletti.  The club has tra­di­tion­ally jumped up and down between the leagues, but it has the fan base and finances to not only be a top flight club, but a con­tender for a Euro­pean spot.  If they sign Giovinco and shore up their defense, there is no doubt they can be con­tenders for a Euro­pean tour­na­ment spot.

GD Star Rat­ing
a Word­Press rat­ing system
Bari Posi­tion­ing Itself for a Top Six Fin­ish, 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 rat­ing

2 comments… read them below or add one

1 Viva Calcio July 15, 2010 at 1:17 am

Great article as always, man.


2 niccolo July 15, 2010 at 4:10 am

I would love to see Giovinco go to Bari, I think he would thrive there and help them surely get into the top ten.

Great article, keep it up.


Leave a Comment