GdS: Why Milan’s transfer dealings continue to heavily feature Ligue 1

By Euan Burns -

AC Milan have been no strangers to shopping in Ligue 1 in recent seasons and the situation is set to be exactly the same in the summer of 2024 with a host of players linked with the Rossoneri. 

As has been explained by La Gazzetta dello Sport, there is good reason for Milan to keep buying players from Ligue 1 when you look at the likes of Mike Maignan and Rafael Leao who were both signed from Lille.

Frederic Massara was known to favour players in Ligue 1 and that has only continued with Geoffrey Moncada in charge of the scouting.

Moncada is really the technical director and being French himself, that is where his best knowledge and contacts are. He is now set to be backed by a coach in Paulo Fonseca who has been coaching in France for the last year at Lille.

The likes of Jonathan David and Tiago Santos from Lille are targets,along with Youssouf Fofana at Monaco, Nice duo Khephren Thuram and Marcin Bulka, and Brest defender Lilian Brassier.

Moncada was asked by L’Equipe in 2023 about the strength of the French top flight from a talent perspective.

“It’s monstrous, in every club and for every generation there are interesting players. The young French players are not afraid, because if they make mistakes it doesn’t matter,” he said.

“It’s not like that in Spain, Germany or Italy. If an Italian player makes a mistake, they’ll say he’s not ready and he’ll end up on the bench for a while. It doesn’t happen there.”

Milan have successfully shopped in France in the recent past and they are set to continue doing so in the future.

Tags AC Milan Ligue 1


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  1. He’s not lying. Look at Terraciano. 1 mistake and BOOM – purgatory. These kids need to be allowed to play and make mistakes and learn from them. This didn’t happen under Pioli.

    1. Well he’s not lying but it’s a fallacious narrative. Ligue 1 is a feeder league now. Most clubs are so poorly managed that they are in debt every season and they have to sell their players to stay afloat. Many big clubs have been in bankrupt these past years, Bordeaux could lose its professional status in the next weeks.

      After the catastrophe of TV rights with Mediapro, Ligue 1 agreed to sell 13% of its revenues, for life, to private funds CVC in exchange for some cash to help the budgets now. It’s completely stupid. They were planning to sell TV rights for 1 billion euros and nobody wants to buy it, especially with Mbappé leaving, so now they plan to create their own TV channel for 25€/month (spoiler: nobody wants to pay that for Ligue 1 only). If they sell TV rights for less than 500M, CVC’s share will grow even more, it’s in the contract. Most clubs presidents didn’t know that clause, the others thought they would sell for 1B. It tells you how stupid they are. Soon they will beg for public money, as every time a French club is in trouble financially.

      So French clubs have to field young players to raise their value, sell them high. It’s their main source of revenues. They make rookie mistakes but they have no other choice. Rookie mistakes are costly in the long run when you fight for titles. We can’t afford that.

      1. French Ligue is in even more disarray than ours. But it just proves that Moncada can get more bang for the buck there because of it…

        I honestly don’t care where the players come from as long as there’s undeniable quality about them. Would I prefer more Italians? Of course. Will I stop supporting Milan if it’s more inter than Inter? No.

        1. Yeah, Moncada and the others can capitalise on the stupidity of Ligue 1 presidents haha good for us if we can profit from that. I just tried to debunk his claim that French clubs are bolder than other top leagues’ clubs. They don’t have any choice, besides PSG of course. If you ask any Ligue 1 coach if he prefers a solid veteran or a kid prone to mistakes, I think we all know the answer.

          1. PSG bought a few youngsters last season who already blossomed. Gonçalo Ramos (66M), Manuel Ugarte (60M), Bradley Barcola (45M), Kang In Lee (22M) last summer. It’s not the usual 2M gamble or the kid from the academy that other Ligue 1 clubs field on a regular basis.

  2. he said that a year ago.

    -Moncada was asked by L’Equipe in 2023 about the strength of the French top flight from a talent perspective.-

    Not really news worthy

    Just let me post this one thing ffs. hoops, hoops, hoops on this site

      1. The comments section is awful. Truly. I don’t know why they don’t use better platforms like Disqus or something….

        Too expensive? Not enough premium subscribers?

      1. Last summer spend was mostly funded by 70 mill Tonali sale and was spread over 10 players. So I don’t see how that supports your argument.
        Zirkzee I will believe when I see it. And we are targeting him because he has a low release clause compared to hid current value.

        Yes tight.
        We haggle and get out bid on players all the time. Remember how long it took to do the CDK deal. How Inter out bid us for Thuram.
        We bargain shop in France, Germany Belgium and the Netherlands.
        I’m not saying it’s a terrible thing but it is very restrictive.

  3. We didn’t really shop that much in Ligue 1 to be fair. We only bought Leao and Maignan there in last 5 years. We’re on to Lille mostly because of Elliott who were in the past involved in ownership.

    But it’s true about the talent, there are many talented youngsters in French league and they still come cheap with huge potential and high resale value.

  4. There enough young and cheap talent in Italy,

    Andrea Combiaso costs Juventus just 7 Millions
    Baldanzi costs 12 million for Roma
    Vicario costs 20 millions for Tottenham
    DI Gregorio costs 20 million for Juve
    Bennacer and Tonali each one costs us 17 Millions

    Indeed there are expensives transfers like Vlahovic and Chiesa, though the Serie A market should not be overlooked

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