Lots of teams in Europe need to buy a midfielder or two this summer. That's no secret; teams always need midfielders. It's part of the game, and it's probably the most ever-changing position group in the game. In fact, odds are that the club you support is in need of a midfielder.
Fortunately for you and your team in need, Napoli have themselves a midfielder who's available for purchase! Valon Behrami can be part of your team and their hopeful successes this upcoming season! For the low, low price of €8 million, he can be yours! Come on down and check this guy out...
DOB: April 19, 1985 (29) | Height: 6'0" (1.85 meters)
2014 Season: 33 appearances (24 starts)
0 goals, 0 assists
Why You Want Him: Behrami is a good "engine room" type of midfielder, a role slowly coming back more in to prominence in football. He has a high motor that he uses to work his way back and forth across the pitch in a hurry to support the squad both in attack and defense. He fits in seamlessly in most two- or three-man midfield setups, and can serve as the kind of player that helps a side do what it does.
Behrami is better in defense than directly attacking, as he lacks a good long range shot and doesn't have the best through balls around. He does tackle well, though, and generally keeps himself well positioned to cut off runs and intercept passes. He's also a pretty stout guy physically, letting him bang around with more physical attackers and giving him value in the box on set pieces.
He's also a pretty well experienced guy, with a solid playing history in Italy as well as a history of playing well in the English Premier League, generally considered one of the tougher places to play with the speed and physicality of the league. Behrami's also done well in European competition, and would serve as an excellent veteran presence to a younger team or one in need of a boost after a down season,
Why He's Available: Behrami just never really seem to fit in to the style and setup that Rafa Benitez put in to place when he took over at Napoli. He never seemed comfortable serving as a linking element in midfield buildup play, never looked like he quite "got" the way he was asked to defend within the unit, and perhaps just never really fit in with Rafa himself.
Behrami also had a big fallout with his former midfield partner Gokhan Inler. The two were once fast friends and showed an almost telepathic connection in midfield two years ago, but last year an agent-driven dispute angered Behrami and fractured that relationship. He just never seemed to function right with Inler next to him in midfield, and quickly lost his place in the side once Jorginho arrived in January and quickly established himself as a key cog in the side.
Behrami's not suddenly an awful player, but he did seem to take a bit of a step back last season and needs to find a place to call home that fits him better than Napoli does now. Find the right team, and he can give you quality performances again.