Wednesday April 25 2012
Preziosi’s misguided Genoa blame

Genoa’s disastrous season took another twist on Sunday and Luca Cetta believes Enrico Preziosi is a chief cause for the current unrest.

“I think this is one of the best group of players assembled during my footballing life. It is a well balanced squad in all departments of the team. There is physicality, youthfulness, experience and quality. Taking a look at the competition and the value of our players, I won’t be happy if we only finish in ninth or tenth place. There is everything we need to have a say in the championship, even if it is clear that the top teams will be in a race of their own.”

These were the optimistic words last September of a President whose club now sits on the cusp of relegation after a shocking run of 11 matches without a win. Genoa’s season went from bad to worse on Sunday as it was thrust into the spotlight by the actions of some frustrated fans – who should never have thrown flares on to the pitch – during the 4-1 loss to Siena.

President Enrico Preziosi was visibly angry and upset at the events which unfolded at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris and laid blame at the feet of the fans at the centre of the storm. And while accepting his reign has not been perfect – “I have made many mistakes in my time here” – Preziosi should be held accountable for his part in driving Genoa to such a position.

Since buying the club in 2003, the toy magnate has treated the Grifoni as such. His constant desire for instant success or a quick-fix has only hurt them. The club is wracked with instability and cannot grow when upheaval occurs every 12 months. For such a proud club – sitting fourth on the all-time Scudetto winners’ list – the manner in which tacticians are hired and fired, or players bought and sold, is unacceptable and simply taking the fans for a ride.

This season alone the Rossoblu have been under the control of Alberto Malesani, Pasquale Marino, Malesani again and now Luigi De Canio – for the second time in his career. This is not an irregular occurrence. Beside Gian Piero Gasperini’s reign from 2006-07 to 2009-10, a number of mid-season changes have occurred and 13 different tacticians called-upon.

On the transfer market Genoa are never at rest. In just the past three seasons, the Grifoni have signed 85 players whilst saying goodbye to 64. The massive turnover does not allow for squad development, nor does much for team harmony and player morale.

Some players signed never made an appearance for Genoa, such as Kevin-Prince Boateng, who was immediately loaned to Milan. Along with making a quick Euro, at times it appears Preziosi is more concerned with assisting Milan rather than Genoa, as evidenced by the Alexander Merkel scenario. His Rossoblu loan was cut short in January, to which Preziosi remarked: “We did Milan a favour seeing as we have a relationship of collaboration with them and that they do have a few problems in midfield.”

The UEFA Cup qualifiers under Gasperini in 2008-09, that free-flowing 3-4-3 outfit which captivated Italy, was broken up after a year in which it was adapting to the rigours of Europe. To go back even further, Genoa were denied a place in Serie A in 2005-06 after the President conspired to fix the last match of the season against already relegated Venezia. His side only required a draw for promotion but were subsequently relegated to Serie C1.

During his nine-year spell Preziosi has helped Genoa climb from mid-table mediocrity in Serie B to Serie A and beyond, whilst acquiring players such as Diego Milito, Thiago Motta and Rodrigo Palacio. Yet those days look far removed as the club sits just a point above the relegation zone. The President claimed Genoa were being held hostage by the minority on Sunday, but perhaps he should look in the mirror and see what his actions are doing to the Grifoni. Ninth doesn’t sound so bad now.

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Have your say...
Of all the "bad" presidents, Preziosis case is at least understandable. For the squad they have, Genoa constantly underperform, and in my opinion they should have been in the top 8 the last two seasons. So yeah, I understand his tinkering
on the 27th April, 2012 at 1:35am
This man destroyed Como FC and walked away. He is a cancer for Italian football and the the thought of Calciopoli figures receiving lifetime bans when Preziosi is allowed to continue, having done much worse, is incedible. I hope Geona goes down to B and beyond.
on the 25th April, 2012 at 9:54pm
Great article Luca!

Unfortunately he did the exact same to my home town team Como. People like him are plagues in Italian football.

He runs the club like someone playing Football Manager. It's a disgrace.
on the 25th April, 2012 at 3:27pm
No surprises. Zamparini and Preziosi are the perfect examples of presidents who think they are dictators.
on the 25th April, 2012 at 3:19pm
Preziosi, Cellino -- and the king of all bad Presidents -- Zamparini... they are putting their fans through torture with their tumultous personalities and non-sensical decisions.
on the 25th April, 2012 at 1:51pm
Great article, sad to see Genoa in this type of disarray as they have a fantastic squad and have had some real top quality players there over the last few seasons.

Hope they manage to stay up and get a bit of stability and build from there.
on the 25th April, 2012 at 12:42pm
I do not think there are big problems in Genoa. Despite Preziosi does has some setbacks in character, but it is not a big problem. Preziosi is rich among all the patrons of serie A clubs. And Genoa owns qualified enough players, despite the squad is bit unstable.

The key problem is the coach, Genoa can not find good enough coach in Italy. Genoa is not that kind of rich to hire Capello. But among the affordable coaches,Preziosi lacks of sight to find a young potential guy like Conte and Allegri.
on the 25th April, 2012 at 12:31pm
There are many presidents in Serie A that are the main problem at their clubs. Preziosi, Zamparini are amongst the worst offenders. Their interference, lack of patience and penchant for a high turn-over of players and coaches are mostly responsible for their clubs inconsistencies. Inter and Cagliari also suffer from their mercurial owners.
on the 25th April, 2012 at 12:00pm

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