Where Have The Values Gone In Italian Soccer?

By Riccardo Di Julio
Paolo Cannavaro
Picture provided by Napoli’s official Twitter page

This post is not meant to be moralistic. In the world of sports, as well as in any other competitive industry, it is more than normal that sometimes it is not the nice guy who actually gets to achieve certain accomplishments. This is a situation that has always existed and certainly doesn’t seem that it will stop happening anytime soon.

Moreover, it happens because unfortunately success is not only dependent on loyalty and ethics. Instead, there are many other components that — especially in today’s soccer — have become much more important than good values, such as the player’s actual talent and capabilities.

These words have little or no intention of judging the teams who only prize the potential ability of players. Without a doubt it is completely understandable that clubs have to make decisions based on their actual needs both on and off the field.

However, regardless of the actual motivations of each team, what Italian soccer witnessed in the last days of the transfer market was just shameful. As a matter of fact, with the recent moves of Pablo Daniel Osvaldo to Juventus and Paolo Cannavaro to Sassuolo, it was demonstrated that loyalty and good values have been entirely lost in Serie A.

On one hand, the Argentine-born player gets the honor of signing for the country’s strongest team after being literally kicked out of his former club, Southampton, for disciplinary reasons. On the other one, instead, the now former Napoli captain is forced to sign with a team that fights against relegation despite having been an authentic flag for the Partenopei for many years.

Even more, it is exactly the same situation regarding the national team. While the 28-year-old seems to have recovered his chances of playing in the World Cup by signing with the Bianconeri, the 32-year-old will probably end his career without having ever played one single game with the Azzurri.

Of course given his age and the lack of playing, Cannavaro is not really a viable option for Italy’s coach Cesare Prandelli anymore. In previous years he undoubtedly earned every single merit to be considered for the Nazionale, both on and off the field. Unfortunately for him, however, even after his best performances with Napoli, Prandelli always justified his decision of not calling him up with his tactical necessities.

For Osvaldo, instead, the case has been the total opposite. In fact, with the only exception of his exclusion from the 2013 Confederations Cup after his shameful behavior in the Coppa Italia final of that year, the forward’s door to the squad has never been entirely closed despite the many behavioral problems.

Riccardo Di Julio is a Soccer Writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @Italcatenaccio and add him to your network on Google.

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