One of the most peculiar aspects of AC Milan’s recent struggles and indeed their season in general so far has been the lack of use of the 2022 summer signings.
MilanNews recall how the flagship of the summer transfer campaign was undoubtedly Charles De Ketelaere, bought for more than €30m from Club Brugge to fix the No.10 role. Divock Origi was signed on a free to rotate with Olivier Giroud, and Malick Thiaw was purchased as a centre-back with potential.
Two players returned to Milanello in Tommaso Pobega – after a four-year spell out on loan at various clubs, most recently Torino – and Yacine Adli who came back from Bordeaux.
Finally, two players joined on loan as Sergino Dest came to deputise Davide Calabria after Alessandro Florenzi’s injury, and Aster Vranckx came from Wolfsburg to add depth to the midfield.
With the exception of Thiaw and partly Dest and Pobega, these are players with an attacking vocation, yet the contribution after mid-season is basically non-existent: 3 goals and 2 assists in total. Pobega has scored twice, while Origi has a goal and an assist, with De Ketelaere getting the other.
However, the defence of the new arrivals is that they have had not much time to show their capabilities. Origi for example arrived feeling the effects of a muscle injury that affected the end of his time at Liverpool. He has played 17 games out of 26 available but only four as a starter.
It hasn’t gone much better for Dest who has 14 overall appearances and four as a starter. De Ketelaere is the one who has played the most but he has been on the field for only 40.8% of the total minutes available this season.
Pobega is being used as a wild card and could be most ‘impactful’ addition due to his two goals scored, but then Vranckx (6.21% of the total minutes played), Thiaw (5%) and Adli (4.63) show that there is little return from the summer so far.