Capello highlights Chukwueze as Milan made a ‘evaluation errors’ last summer

By Isak Möller -

In the summer, Milan completed ten signings and a few of them have struggled to perform so far. As highlighted by Fabio Capello, Samuel Chuwkueze is one of them and the Rossoneri must face the errors made. 

After the sale of Sandro Tonali to Newcastle, Milan were able to spend a significant amount on the mercato and brought in ten players as a result. While some have done well, others have struggled to express themselves with the red and black shirt.

In his column for Gazzetta dello Sport, the former Milan manager Capello highlighted that fact, using Chukwueze as an example. Time is still needed to understand the quality of these players, but errors were made in the acclimatisation evaluation.

“The heavy turnover in the summer was a risk for Milan. The owners invested €132m in ten players, but not all of them have proved to be up to the task, at least not for now. I think of Chukwueze who in Spain, with the Villarreal shirt, did wonderful things.

“At Milan, however, he’s still a shy player. A question of settling in, of course, but also of pressure. Because the Rossoneri shirt weighs more than the others, withstanding the impact of a stadium like San Siro requires a considerable amount of personality. Like the Nigerian, other newcomers are also struggling.

“It’s a sign that the summer Mercato was important, but that perhaps some evaluation erros were made in the planning phase. No matter how innovative and fascinating, the ‘Moneyball’ system is evidently not immune to mistakes,” he wrote.

Chukwueze will get the chance from start against Fiorentina amid the absences of Olivier Giroud and Rafael Leao. In short, it’s a big opportunity for the Nigerian to show his qualities and convince the Milan management. So far, he has just collected an assist.

Tags AC Milan Fabio Capello Samuel Chukwueze


  1. It’s unfair to expect every player to settle in immediately especially after coming from a different league.

    In all fairness to Chukwueze, Pioli has not handle him right. Mostly given him minutes when the first team players like Giroud and Leao are not on the field.

    To be fair, Pioli has mishandled a lot of players including Adli, Okafor and Chukwueze.

    He’s not given them minutes to build their confidence and too often he’s bringing them on in a pressure situations where the game is already loss.

    These players will do better under a manager like Francesco Farioli, De Zerbi, Italiano, Christophe Gaultier, or Xabi Alonso.

    I also think a lot of injuries are because of the training method and not so much the medical staff. Therefore, it’s Pioli’s fit staff that’s causing the problems.

    This is why we are seeing so many muscular injuries even for our goalkeepers which bizarre to say the least.

  2. Well evaluations are on management isn’t it? We’ll see at the end of the season and it’s still early days anyway. Chuk should get legit chances. But I always wondered why we spent money there when we didn’t need to. Money which could have been spent on a capable DM.
    And this Moneyball word is getting thrown around casually. Its about getting undervalued players. We paid 20m+8 for Chuk…if he’s undervalued then Furlani, Moncada and Pioli (who requested this player ) believe he should be performing like a 40m+ player. And dont even think he’ll max out to 28m potential 🤷‍♂️

  3. I agree with the money all can make error, especially since player mental state is not quantifiable. Even the movie shown the Brad Pitt character take extra time to motivate the low confidence player like the one played by Chris Pratt.

    Data can speak so much, but still it player-coach relationship still more important. Especially when reported that the coach is the decision maker.

  4. I think it should be noted, that among the players we recruited this summer, the best performing ones are those who took part in the USA tour (RLC, Reijnders and Pulisic) who are also in our best 11. The other players had differents results, and yes, didn’t necessarly had enough minutes to show the depth or their talent. And this is a problem that often happens under pioli, when some players are pretty much overused till they get injured, while the others are benched till they get rusty and are then thrown in bad situations.
    However, back to Chukuweze, I don’t want to hurry a judgement, many players didn’t really do well in their first seasons with their new teams, but some details are noticeable. The player is very one footed, to the point that it is annoying. Also, this is not a player from the belgian league, or a very young player, this is a player in his prime, who has played in la Liga, who scored, assisted and dribbled against many good teams in la Liga and who also played an UCL semi-final, he shouldn’t be so timid and so hesitant in my opinion.
    So until he proves otherwise, Chukuweze is a flop and almost makes me regret Messias and Saelemakers, almost.

  5. From the day I heard that Milan showed interest in Chukwueze, I felt sorry for him because Milan doesn’t need him after buying Pulisic. Chuks plays his kind of game so he should not flaked. Rather, flake the Milan management that took the decision to buy him.

  6. The big problem is that Chukwueze is a ball hog and likes to dribble the ball all by himself downfield.
    I don’t know much about La Liga, but the highlight videos of Chukwueze at Villareal showed him doing this a lot, with the defenders generally either staying too far away from him or just comically bad at being able to stop him. These were of course the weaker teams in La Liga as it’s doubtful he’d be able to do that against the Real Madrid, Barcelona or the Atleticos.
    Anyway, given the propensity for the weaker teams in Serie A to play low blocks and pack in the defenses, as well has putting in hard challenges against dribblers, it’s pretty easy to see why Chukwueze isn’t doing so great in Serie A. His style just doesn’t fit the defensive nature of Serie A.
    He needs to learn how to make better use of his team mates, to do give and go passes, make crosses, etc., to unlock these dense defenses.
    He can’t dribble through them, that’s for sure.

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