Serie A season review, Genoa: too much mess at Marassi

by | May 23, 2022 11:30

Position: 19 (Relegated to Serie B)
Points: 28
Comparison with previous season: -23 (11th)

Season overview

Genoa have been relegated to Serie B for the first time since 1994-95 after a tumultuous season. It changed everything during the campaign, from club to coaches. Davide Ballardini was sacked in November after collecting just nine points in 12 games. His successor Andriy Shevchenko didn’t obtain better results and faced the same destiny in January. He had earned three points in nine games. The ex-Milan striker was the first coach chosen by new owners 777 Partners, who took over from Enrico Preziosi in September. Alexander Blessin surprisingly arrived at the Stadio Ferraris and Genoa played a good brand of football in some games, bhut not good enough to survive.

Turning point of the season

While Sampdoria made a decisive step toward survival in the Derby della Lanterna in April, Genoa understood they’d be relegated. Abdelhamid Sabiri broke the deadlock after 25 minutes and the Grifone had a chance to level the game in the stoppages, but their captain Mimmo Criscito missed a penalty kick leaving the pitch in tears. The win against Juventus the following was useless and it was the last one for them in Serie A. No team has won fewer games than them this term, just four.

The coaches – Davide Ballardini, Andriy Shevchenko and Alexander Blessin

To be fair, Genoa had four coaches this season as Abdoulay Konko replaced Sheva for one game before Blessin’s appointment. The German tactician brought new ideas to Genoa and Serie A and you can’t really blame just him for their relegation. Blessin has received praise from many pundits, including Fabio Capello who said Italy should have followed his philosophy which is very similar to Jurgen Klopp’s. Of course, Genoa don’t have the same quality as Liverpool and needed more goals, experience and solidity to survive. It will be interesting to see if Blessin’s journey in Italian football will continue next season.

Player of the Year – Domenico Criscito

The Captain was struggling with injuries and didn’t play many games. He also missed a decisive spot-kick against Sampdoria (scoring the following one against Juve in the stoppages). However, he had had a chance to sign with Toronto FC in January but refused to leave the club, trying to help them gain survival. It didn’t happen, but it says everything about Criscito’s bond with this club and its fans. The defender ended the campaign with seven goals in 21 games, the second best scorer of the season after Mattia Destro. He is now free to move to the MLS after 274 games with the Rossoblu.

Disappointing player of the year – Hernani

It’s hard to pick just one. Genoa had many young players and many others on loan for foreign clubs without Serie A experience. Many of them, if not almost all of them, were not up to the task. Hernani was expected to bring quality to Genoa’s midfield and provide some goals and assists. On the contrary, his impact was very soft. He played only 18 games, failing to score or deliver assists. He didn’t have much competition in the middle of the park, with many young players battling for a starting spot, but he didn’t always emerge victoriously. He will return to Parma in the summer, but he is unlikely to stick around at the Stadio Tardini.

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