Injuries have been a significant problem in the heart of the Milan defence so far this season, and it’s reported that it could lead to a new arrival in January.
While Mateo Musacchio has spent time on the sidelines this season, Leo Duarte is now a long-term absentee after he sustained an ankle injury.
There is positive news though with Mattia Caldara edging ever closer to making a return from his own injury nightmare, but the wait continues to see him back in action at senior level as Milan will no doubt want to avoid taking any risks with him.
Given the 25-year-old has been limited to just two appearances for us since joining last year, it will raise question marks over his reliability moving forward until he reaches a point where he gets a consistent run of games under his belt to prove both his fitness and form.
It’s not impossible as Giacomo Bonaventura and Andrea Conti have gone through a similarly difficult time over the past 18 months, and they’ve now broken back into the starting XI and are showing their class once again.
Milan eyeing January transfer signing
As noted by La Gazzetta dello Sport though, Caldara faces a different threat with Merih Demiral and Jean-Clair Todibo said to be on Milan’s transfer radar for January, and so the arrival of either of those targets would certainly make life more difficult for him to work his way up the pecking order.
It’s a big decision as far as Milan are concerned as if they opted against signing a defender, that could be perceived as a major hint that they have unwavering faith in Caldara to come good and cement his place in the starting line-up alongside Alessio Romagnoli as perhaps has always been the plan.
In contrast, if they brought in another new signing of the quality and promise that Demiral and Todibo possess respectively, it would surely raise concern over how Caldara’s injury troubles have been interpreted by the hierarchy if they feel a reinforcement is needed in defence.
Key decision ahead which could impact Caldara
It arguably comes down to whether or not the former Atalanta defender is still regarded as the long-term partner for Romagnoli, or if Milan feel as though they have to look in a different direction and have a solid alternative plan just in case.
As seen in the vote below with Milan Talk followers on Twitter, over 50% of those who voted backed a signing in January over showing complete faith in Caldara and not adding anything in that department.
It’s understandable why many would go for that option, and either Demiral or Todibo could certainly be regarded as a top signing for us if a deal is done for either.
That said, it’s hoped that it doesn’t have a majorly adverse impact on Caldara’s future at Milan. Although it’s a big leap of faith to suggest that he can come through his injury nightmare and rediscover his Atalanta form given that there has been no evidence of that for almost 16 months now, it’s still possible for him to come out the other side of it and show his worth moving forward if he has an opportunity to do so.
Talk of a defender being signed in January (Todibo/Demiral etc). Wait for Caldara or do Milan need another defender?
— Milan Talk (@MilanTalk1) December 13, 2019
I think they are plotting a move to a 3 back system. Probably will allow players to play in a more natural position. I’d sell Suso, Hakan, Ricky to fund a very good defender personally
— Jon Siciliano (@jonsis) December 13, 2019