As one of the truly great clubs of Italian football, fans of the Italian game often look to Fiorentina as a club who could – and should – do more. La Viola have long been seen as an underachiever in the Italian league, but the hiring of Vincenzo Italiano has changed things. Last year, the Tuscans made a spree of smart signings using the funds from the Dusan Vlahovic sale. The end result has been an upwardly mobile squad that looks interesting on and off the pitch. This summer, though, has seen some truly intriguing names linked with a move to Tuscany.
The latest player who looks set to join the purple revolution is Antonin Barak. The Czech playmaker has shone for Hellas Verona, and could arguably be listed as one of the best players in Serie A over the last two seasons. Interest in the 27-year-old has been diverse, but it looks like it will be Fiorentina who manage to land the player. A four year deal has been agreed, with Barak set to sign on an initial loan deal with the option to buy the player for €10m, plus €2m in bonuses.
Barak has been a key player for Verona in the last few years, shining especially last year. The Czech midfielder improved significantly in recent years, and now looks set to get a chance to prove himself as one of the truly great Italian football clubs.
11 goals in 29 league games last year was a hugely impressive return. Many Verona fans expected him to stay on, but the fact the player was missing from the game against Bologna at the weekend was telling. Now, Barak will begin a new journey as Fiorentina look to make waves at home and in Europe.
Fiorentina fail in bid for Orkun Kokcu
Having failed to bring back fan favourite Lucas Torreira this summer, Fiorentina have looked to make a splash to make up for the mistake. However, one player who will not be arriving is Feyenoord midfielder Orkun Kokcu. The Dutch-Turk showed exceptional form last year for Feyenoord, helping the Rotterdam club get to the UEFA Conference League final where they lost to AS Roma.
The player is believed to have knocked back an approach from the Viola, with his belief that his current employers are every bit as capable, if not more, than Fiorentina. It will be come as a blow, but the arrival of Barak will help to cover the missed opportunities for both Torreira and Kokcu.
Fiorentina are expected to be busy right up until the end of the window as they look to continually reshape their squad to fight for a continental place through their league finish.