Tuttosport: The three reasons Milan prefer shopping abroad than signing players in Serie A

By Oliver Fisher -

AC Milan have been scouring the foreign market more so than looking for domestic reinforcements, and there is reportedly a good reason for that.

Today’s edition of Tuttosport (via MilanNews) emphasises the Rossoneri’s “new philosophy” and comments on why the management are focusing more on the international market than signing players already in Serie A.

It is described as a ‘very specific strategic choice’ dictated by multiple factors. First of all there is cost, because Italian clubs tend to charge much higher prices than their players are actually worth in order to sell to a fellow Serie A side. They often tend to inflate their valuations too much, which puts Milan off.

Secondly, abroad there is greater courage in launching young players, making them grow and then selling them at not exaggerated figures, which has helped Milan as seen in the Brahim Diaz and Tomori operations.

Finally, there are the tax reliefs provided for by the Growth Decree, a solution that allows the club to pay less taxes on a player’s gross salary if they move their tax residence to Italy for at least 24 continuous months. Therefore, Milan will save 50% on gross salary payments from the likes of Brahim, Giroud, Tomori and Maignan.

READ MORE: Pioli tells Maldini he wants Italy international for the wing – club must convince Elliott

Tags AC Milan


  1. 3 reasons Milan prefers to sign international players:

    1) Money
    2) Money
    3) Money

    Bonus #4) Their soul is dead and it’s just pure business now. Just a bunch if mercenary players we’re signing that we might be able to bleed for value.

    1. In general I don’t disagree here. I get it, they have to run a business, but the moves over the past few seasons weren’t even smart business moves. Additionally, where’s the line when Milan becomes unrecognizable?? In my opinion we’re very close. My heart felt heavy when I saw us contribute 0 players to the national team for the first time I can remember…

      1. So 40milions for Berardi is a fair price for after a above average season and decent euro?
        It’s nice to have a squad with homegrown player but I wouldn’t over pay either.
        Look at Wolverhampton, they barely have any English players in their starting 11.

    2. Having that ‘soul’ costs money that Milan don’t have to spend. Just because Juventus and Inter are/were bankrolled by their owners, Milan are still recovering from previous owners and have to spend smartly to compete.

      Critically, for them to be more competitive, they need to be selling more players for capital gains. I know that’s ‘soulless’ but it’s the most reliable way to generate strong income on top of existing revenue.

      And which players aren’t mercenaries these days anyway? Look at the huge amount of money the club offered to keep a ‘soul’ with Donnarumma and it still wasn’t enough. Players love the clubs who pay them.

      This isn’t the early 90s – Serie A didn’t cement its position at the top and now the big earners in England make a colossal amount more money. Without being bankrolled by oil money, the club is finally getting with the times and updating its philosophy.

    3. Yes lets overpay for players because they are Italians. It’s not that they are lacking soul – it’s that some fans are lacking brains.

      If there is a clear bias in the market, and teams are willing to overpay for Italian players, then it is in the best interest of MIlan to exploit this bias, by acting in oposite direction and go for foreign players that are undervalued. If you are hell bent on signing Italian players you are doing the oposite thing – you are putting yourself at a disadvantage by willingly overpaying for service you could get much cheaper.

      And as far as mercenaries go – we just got read of the biggest one of them all – Donnarumma. Players being home-grown or Italian means nothing. This current Milan identity comes from players like Kessie and Ibra. Players who chose to care for this club and found a home here.

      1. I hear your opinions and as i said I understand the financial aspect of it, just doesn’t make me too excited to see Milan change this much in the past few years. I can’t really even call them an Italian team, and that, for me, meant something. Not saying others have to feel this way but to me it mattered. Maybe it’s a microcosm of the footballing world as a whole these days and I get it, but doesn’t mean I have to like it. Cheers all!

      2. Watch how fast Kessie (who “chooses to care for this club”) leaves if we don’t match or come very close to his salary demands.. just watch. Oh he’s so committed to the club!! B.S. He will go wherever he wants, he’s entering his prime. If he can make the salary he wants and stay here he’ll stay, if he can’t then he will pack up and say see ya and not look back once.

        1. So he doesn’t care for the club because he wants to be paid what he is worth?
          There is a huge difference between not caring and not letting yourself get exploited.

    4. Times have changed and fans need to come to grips with it. I have been a Milan fan since before Shevchenko joined Milan. It hurts not to see big names in their prime even considering signing with the club but you need to be realistic. The days of bleeding money for sporting success is over. How many clubs have gone bankrupt in an effort to do so (including Milan)! It is time for fans to understand the economics and realize that this is the only way forward. There will be mistakes made along the way but when you go after youth, it is a bit of a crapshoot as you are dealing with so many unknowns. Hopefully, Maldini and company get more right than wrong.

      One other mini-rant, just because a rumour exists, it does not make it true! Secondly, if a player is sold for a low price, it is likely because there is no demand for him to justify a higher value. No club would take a lower offer for the sake of it.

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