Napoli Sign Adam Ounas – One of the most astute acquisitions of 2017
24th July 2017. By Edward Stratmann.
While the likes of AC Milan, Juventus, AS Roma and Inter Milan have all been busy flexing their financial muscles in the transfer market, Napoli has quietly gone under the radar with their dealings this summer.
It must be said that although they have been spending, they’ve still impressively gone about their work in a purposeful, financial savvy fashion, signing players who’ll be extremely suitable for Maurizio Sarri’s entertaining philosophy.
Bringing in accomplished left-back, Mario Rui, on an initial loan from Roma, adds essential depth to the squad, and should prove handy to relieve Faouzi Ghoulam should he need a rest over the course of the campaign. Their other acquisition so far is indeed a lot more exciting, however, for Adam Ounas is a hugely promising talent with awesome potential.
Paying a very reasonable fee, believed to be in the region of €10 million, for a player who’s so gifted and that has such an immense scope for improvement represents terrific value for the Partenopei too.
Upon speaking on his move, the ambitious Ounas made a point of thanking Bordeaux for everything they did for him, while voicing his enthusiasm about the next step in his footballing journey. “I leave for a new challenge with joy and determination, but I’m leaving a big club which gave me everything and I want to thank those people who put their faith in me from the start. A huge thank you to all the club personnel, the staff, my teammates as well as the Bordeaux supporters. Good luck to the club going forward and a million thanks,” he announced.
In Ounas, Napoli have secured a man with an absolute wand of a left foot, and who possesses sublime technical qualities, which is certainly one of the key reasons why the club were so keen to bring him in – knowing he’ll be an ideal fit for Sarri’s methods. Able to play as a trequartisa and on the left or right wing, the 20-year-old’s versatility will give his manager plenty of flexibility as to how best use him. It’ll be expected that within Sarri’s preferred 4-3-3 he’ll operate predominantly out wide, though, and use his penchant of cutting inside into the half and 10 spaces to great effect, in order to link play, create overloads and use his individual qualities closer to goal.
Furthermore, the master with the ball at his feet notably uses his aptitude here to embark on mesmerising dribbles, where he uses his ingenuitve array of skills, feints and shimmies to outfox his opponent. Being a competent, albeit at times over ambitious passer, plus a superb set piece taker, Ounas will be afforded the ideal platform to refine all forms of his distribution under the expert tutelage of Sarri, as the Italian steward’s side is one of the finest exponents of moving the ball quickly and with the utmost purpose.
The fact his close control is so good, in combination with his balance, agility and speed, only serves to add to his unpredictability. Even though he’s a diminutive figure, his low centre of gravity crucially means he’s very difficult to push off the ball, something that gives him another advantage of his adversaries.
Full of confidence and dynamism, it’ll be fascinating to see how the expressive attacker will fare within the competitive confines of his new team. It certainly won’t be easy for him to break into the starting lineup, as he’ll most likely have to be content with substitute appearances to replace the established Jose Callejon and Lorenzo Insigne to begin with.
One of his former coaches at Bordeaux, Willy Sagnol, explained what a weapon the explosive Ounas is to bring on as a substitute, however. “When I think of a player coming from the bench, Adam is the first to come to mind, for technique and freshness,” he mused.
Having already bagged two goals in his first two friendlies for Napoli, Ounas, who represented France at youth international level but has pledged his allegiance to Algeria at the senior level, really couldn’t have dreamt of a better start to life with Napoli.
Amid all the excessive spending in Serie A, Ounas’ signing might just turn out to be one of the most astute, value for money signings of the window. And Napoli’s recruitment department unquestionably deserve tremendous credit for identifying and subsequently acquiring such a brilliant fit for Sarri’s system.
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