If you have been around long enough you know I hate predictions, and this year is no different, but I figured I would take a crack regardless. If you missed any of the preview pieces they can be found here:
Season Preview Part I: Max Who?
Season Preview Part II: Two Real GKs?!
Season Preview Part III: Oddo’s Revenge
Season Preview Part IV: Midfield Changing of the Guard
Season Preview Part V: The Pato-Borri Show
Now onto the predictions...
First and foremost I am staying grounded about our AC Milan. I don't expect magic this season, in fact I don't expect much at all. The team will certainly have some growing pains to contend with and injuries to starters gives us a bit of a drop off in talent on the pitch. While our bench is certainly serviceable it is young and lacks the depth of a team like Inter or even Juventus. As I look at the additions by team's like Juventus, Genoa, and Lazio. I wonder how competitive we can be against those sides while still attempting to move forward in the Champions League. Fourth place should be a goal, but a Europe League spot is probably much more realistic. I have never been much of an optimist, so that is not going to change any time soon...
My scudetto goes to Juventus, they have added a strong list of players in Bonucci, Pepe, Krasic, and Aquilani on loan. They have depth almost everywhere and a wily Serie A tactician in Gigi Del Neri who gets the most out of teams wherever he is. They also don't have the rigors of the CL so expect them to push and push hard to dethrone Inter.
The other 3 CL spots go to Inter, Palermo, and Lazio with Genoa in fifth place. Before you go crazy about Palermo, they were very close to fourth last season and did well in beating us and Inter. They are fearless, and despite losing Cavani, their defense is intact and a good season from Miccoli may earn him a place in Prandelli's Azzurri, he is playing with something to prove. Now onto Lazio, a team always capable, but lately under performing. Losing Kolarov hurts, but adding Hernanes alongside Ledesma will help the attack which was rather toothless last season. Coupled with Reja on the bench for a full season expect Lazio to make some noise.
So where are the usuals Roma, Fiorentina, and Sampdoria? Well frankly put losing Prandelli is crippling to Fiorentina and it will take time for Sinisa to make a difference. Same can be said for Sampdoria who will have a promising future but a tough year adjusting, but it is Roma whose addition of Adriano may prove more harm than good! Their ace in the hole is still the tinker-man and while they are used to quiet transfer windows, this one was just to quiet.
Leading scorer goes to Pazzini and the biggest surprise of the season is going to be Giovinco who will finally get a chance to prove his worth.