Thursday August 22 2019
Cairo: 'Torino could've had Ribery'

Torino President Urbano Cairo prepares for the Europa League showdown with Wolves, but claims “we could’ve signed Franck Ribery if we wanted to.”

The first leg of the Europa League play-off is tonight at 20.00 UK time, click here for the line-ups.

“It’s a very important game for us, because clearly it is the path to the group phase. Wolverhampton did very well to finish seventh in the Premier League last season, we’ve prepared well and have our fingers crossed,” the President told Sky Sport Italia.

“The Coach prepared them well, we’ve confident and will give our best. We had Simone Zaza last season, but never in good shape, not even half of what he is now. So to all intents and purposes, Zaza is a new signing for us, with Lyanco and Kevin Bonifazi also coming back from loan.”

It’s reported that Toro are holding off on big investments until they have ascertained their Europa League status.

“People say why have we not made new signings yet, but that would never have been suitable for this game. It’s only right that the players who got us here last season get to play tonight, while it’s not easy for newcomers to settle fully into Coach Mazzarri’s systems.

“Our aim was always to have the old guard for the majority get us through these preliminary rounds.”

Fiorentina unveiled Ribery today and Cairo insisted he had no envy for them.

“I used to have big media impact signings, for example Alvaro Recoba, but after the initial attention and enthusiasm, he didn’t have a great season.

“I think we too could’ve signed Ribery if we wanted to, but he is not the kind of player we are looking for. I prefer to focus on targeted signings that are suited to the team and the roles we are lacking. I’ve done the big media-friendly buys and they have not brought me luck.”

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