Buon Natale, everyone!
Rafa, if you're going to sit on the sidelines calmly taking notes, at least have a stack of classy books to do it in. Moleskine may be a bit expensive but it's also sturdy, so you can save the notebooks to look back on. And maybe then you'll remember that Goran Pandev should be on the bench because a Mertens-Ziggy-Lorenzo line works just fine.
Cost: $11.14 for a pocket-sized notebook with ruled pages.
One pair of old-time football boots, offering better protection for the foot and ankle, and possibly capable of delivering quite a heavy kick to select opponents.
Cost: $65.40 + additional bids for a lovely pair on eBay
Blerim Džemaili, Gokhan Inler and Valon Behrami
Oh come on, wouldn't the Swiss midfielders look positively adorbs all dressed up in matching ugly Christmas sweaters?
Cost: To find three matching sweaters, we're going to need to order some that are new-made-to-look-old, rather than simply trawl the Goodwill. These ugly sweaters don't come cheap, at $149.97 for all three.
A sweet little lace hanky that, on reflection, appears to contain traces of blood. Suitable for both wiping his own tears (we're still crying with you, Pipita, after that horrible Champions League let down) and mopping up opponents' blood.
Cost: about $1.50 in any antique store. May cost a bit more with authentic blood stains, however.
Cost: Kit "for Wound Treatment & Protection" is just $14.88. Seems like Napoli might want to buy in bulk.
(image screenshoted from author's personal Amazon account downloads)
Napoli's very own Ziggy needs to be sure he's up-to-date on why, exactly, he's being called Ziggy. Plus, what better to do on pre-match evenings than curl up with The Wire?
Cost: $19.99 for digital delivery of Season 2 of the Wire, via Amazon.
Each time I see a Napoli video, Mertens seems to be speaking English. Now, the majority of the paretnopei might not be native Italian speakers, but it still seems like he might fare better if he speeds up his Italian learning.
Cost: $209.30 for Rosetta Stone Level 1-2 -- a bargain! (especially when compared to how much it would cost to buy the real Rosetta Stone)
Perhaps extensive review of the Home Alone trilogy will give el pajaro some tips on how to keep his home safe from burglaries.
Cost: Buy Home Alone 1&2 together with The Christmas Story -- tips on how not to get your tongue stuck to a lamp post -- and it's just $33.44!
One way plane ticket from Porto Alegre to Naples
Cost: $1537 and 38 hours of Vargas's life
Worry not, Aurelio De Laurentiis. This little gift giving spree is only going to set you back about $2042.62. But it'd probably be nice of you to throw in a few stocking stuffers for the players stuck on Santa's naughty list. Except for Pablo Armero. He only gets a lump of coal.