Saturday, 27 June 2015

Bourne's Player Review 2014/15 : Goalkeepers

Once again, I invited Torino fan Peter Bourne to rate the performance of each member of the Torino squad, starting with the Goalkeepers.

Luca Castellazzi no rating
39, Goalkeeper
1 appearance (-1 goal conceded)

Initially signed for the club in the summer of 2005 before bankruptcy kicked in and he left without playing a game. Nearly ten years later, and as the oldest Serie A player in 2014-15, his contribution limited to a Coppa Italia substitute appearance in the defeat against Lazio.

Future: To be released

Jean-Francois Gillet 6.5/10
36, Goalkeeper
14 appearances (-14 goals conceded)

A Ventura favourite, Gillet returned to competitive football having sat out the 2013-14 season following a retroactive punishment related to the calcioscommesse scandal. When Ventura dropped Padelli after an error-ridden performance at Cagliari, it seemed an excuse to bring his starpupil back at the first opportunity. Instead it transpired to be a move designed to re-energise Padelli as after 14 matches between Serie A and Europe, Gillet was cast aside and surprisingly sold to Catania, a club recently embroiled in their own match-fixing saga.

Future: Sold to Catania in January 2015

Salvador Ichazo no rating
23, Goalkeeper
1 appearance (-0 goals conceded)

His surname in Italian is borderline comical. A star back in Uruguay with Danubio and the Uruguay U-20 team his arrival may be case of right player, wrong time. Not given a chance until the passeggiata season closer against Cesena. Club may already have enough keepers on the books.

Future: Future currently being decided but likely to be tied to what decision is made regarding the two Gomis brothers following their successful loans at Avellino (Alfred) and Trapani (Lys). 

Daniele Padelli 7/10
29, Goalkeeper
38 appearances (-42 goals conceded)

His YouTube moment of his season was very comedy mis-kick/own goal in the home defeat to Empoli. A calamity that essentially killed any chance of European football for 2015-16. I may be kind with the rating but typical with many Petrachi/Ventura signings, Padelli has improved markedly in his two years with the club. Now on the fringes of the Nazionale, a penalty save away at Fiorentina and impressive performance in the overdue derby win outweigh the ‘hands over your eyes moment’ every time he takes possession with his feet. Additionally, showed character when dropped for Ventura favourite Gillet earlier in the season.

Future: Highly likely to be the Toro #1 next season. More interesting will be the identity of his understudy

Forecast 2015-2016: Highly like to see Padelli as number 1 with one of the Gomis brothers or Ichazo pushing him close. No major changes in goal

For more from Peter you can follow him on Twitter here and his book about his experiences following Torino can still be purchased from Amazon here.

Forza Toro

Torino Transfer Update

Despite the transfer window not officially opening until July 1st, Torino have already made two new acquisitions ahead of the new season.

Brazilian left back Danilo Avelar has joined the club from Cagliari on a four year contract, with young Toro defender Antonio Barreca moving the the Sardinians as part of the deal.

Ghanaian midfielder Afriyie Acquah, who spent the latter half of last season on loan at Sampdoria has also joined Toro on a permanent deal from German club Hoffenheim.

The Granata have also resolved a couple of co-ownership deals in the past week, with Marco Benassi now being fully owned by Toro after purchasing the other half of his contract from Inter. Simone Verdi, who has been on loan at Empoli for the past two seasons is now fully owned by AC Milan.

Forza Toro!

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Torino FC Awards 2014/15

It's that time of year for the annual Torino FCInglese awards ceremony.

Click on the following link and pick your winners for Player of the Season, Signing of the Season, Performance of the Season, Unsung Hero of the Season and Goal of the Season.

To help you pick your favourite goal of the season, all eight goals available to choose from can be viewed in the video below. Voting closes July 1st.


Forza Toro!

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Torino 5-0 Cesena

Torino ended the Serie A season with an impressive 5-0 victory over the already relegated Cesena on Sunday evening.

Uruguayan goalkeeper Salvador Ichazo made his Toro debut, whilst Maxi Lopez was fit again to partner Josef Martinez upfront.

Toro took the lead after only ten minutes when Marco Benassi's deflected shot was parried into the path of Josef Martinez who headed home.

The Granata doubled their lead moments later when Martinez's header crashed off the crossbar, and enabled striker partner Maxi Lopez to tap in from close range.

Torino added a third goal before half time, as Marco Benassi scored another sensational goal against Cesena - this time a long range effort from fully 35 yards.

Four minutes into the second half, Emiliano Moretti scored his second goal of the season as he headed home from a corner.

With twenty minutes remaining, Maxi Lopez doubled his tally for the night, as he capitalised on a poor clearance by the Cesena defence to score.

This was the perfect way to end what has been a memorable season, as the Granata scored five goals for the third time this campaign.

And despite the poor start to the season, and the extra fatigue playing in the Europa League brought, Toro finished the season in 9th place on 54pts - only three points less than last season's tally.

Forza Toro

Saturday, 30 May 2015

Torino v Cesena Preview

Torino will end what has been a memorable campaign for the Granata with a home match against already relegated Cesena on Sunday evening.

Cristian Molinaro misses out through suspension and Omar El Kaddouri misses out through injury so youngsters Kevin Bonifazi, Claudio Morra and Simone Rosso are all included in the squad.

Last weekend's defeat against AC Milan means that Toro will not be able to qualify for Europe, but the men in maroon could finish as high as 8th with a victory.

Cesena have already been relegated having only managed four victories this season since being promoted, but the reverse fixture was one of the major catalysts in Toro's resurgence in the second half of the season.

The Granata had thrown away a 2-0 goal lead against the Cavallucci Marini back in January, but a late Maxi Lopez goal gave Toro an important victory that started an unbeaten run of nine games.

Prediction
Torino 2-0 Cesena

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

AC Milan 3-0 Torino

Torino's hopes of qualifying for next season's Europa League are now mathematically impossible after suffering a disappointing 3-0 defeat against Milan on Sunday evening.

Injuries to regular strikers Fabio Quagliarella and Maxi Lopez meant a rare start for Amauri alongside Josef Martinez. Nikola Maksimovic's suspension meant that Matteo Darmian was also forced to play in the back three rather than his usual wing back role.

Milan took the lead against the run of play after a quarter of an hour when Cristian Zaccardo's pass found Stephen El Shaarawy who took a touch before volleying beyond Daniele Padelli.

On the stroke of half time, the home side were reduced to ten men when Zaccardo cynically tripped Cristian Molinaro who was through on goal following Amauri's excellent back heel.

However, the numerical advantage did not last long, as just twelve minutes into the second half Cristian Molinaro was dismissed for upending Marco Van Ginkel in the area. Giampaolo Pazzini stepped up to convert the spot kick, which was his 100th goal in Serie A.

Moments later, El Shaarawy scored his second goal of the game to put the game to bed after nice work by the impressive Van Ginkel.

This was a disappointing showing by an admittedly tired Torino side, who always knew that European qualification was against the odds - but that takes nothing away from what has been an excellent season.

Forza Toro

Saturday, 23 May 2015

AC Milan v Torino Preview

Torino will make the short trip to Milan on Sunday evening knowing that a place in next season's Europa League could still be a possibility.

Genoa, who currently occupy the final Europa League place have been refused a European license for next season - so that means Toro, Sampdoria and Inter may still have a chance of qualifying.

The Granata have an injury crisis upfront as Maxi Lopez has now joined Fabio Quagliarella in the treatment room. Therefore, primavera strikers Claudio Morra and Simone Rosso have been called up to the first team squad and could make their debuts.

AC Milan have had a miserable season under the guidance of former player Pippo Inzaghi and the rossoneri currently sit in 11th place - unacceptable for a club of their stature.

Milan have lost four of their last five matches, but did record an impressive 2-1 victory over Roma in their last game at the San Siro.

Prediction
AC Milan 1-1 Torino