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Fiorentina still strong, but won't challenge Roma

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Next up in CDT's Know Your Enemy series is Fiorentina, who will be looking to improve on the 18 wins they accumulated last season under first-year manager Paulo Sousa.

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Fiorentina

Last Season: 5th place, 64 pts, +18 goal differential

Manager: Paulo Sousa

Key Additions: Carlos Sanchez, Cristian Tello, Hrvoje Milic, Hernan Toledo, Carlos Salcedo

Key Losses: Marcos Alonso, Mario Gomez, Matias Fernandez, Giuseppe Rossi

Synopsis

On paper, La Viola replaced the quality lost earlier this summer with slightly less talented, yet still capable players. But having to integrate multiple players while playing in multiple competitions can complicate the gelling process for a team.

Fiorentina's still strong, but seems to lack the adequate depth required to compete in multiple competitions. Manager Paulo Sousa, now in his second year in Tuscany, is reportedly upset with some of the summer's transfers, particularly management's decision to let left back Marcos Alonso leave. Rumors have been swirling that Sousa might resign, but as of this writing, it hasn't happened. The club has since refuted the rumors of his exit as well.

Style of Play

In the first two rounds of Serie A play this year Sousa used different formations. He rolled out a 3-4-2-1 formation in a 1-0 victory over Chievo Verona on opening weekend, followed by a 3-4-3 formation in a 2-1 loss to Juventus last time out. Fiorentina's strengths include executing attacking set pieces and attacking through the middle of the pitch with short passing.

Biggest Threat

Josep Ilicic will most likely be Fiorentina's biggest threat. Ilicic scored 13 goals and grabbed six assists in league play last year, so it wouldn't be surprising to see him get 10 goals and 10 assists this season (or even 15 and 10).

Biggest Question Mark

The status of manager Paulo Sousa is the biggest question mark at the moment. Although the club refuted rumors of him handing in his resignation, the situation still seems fragile. Should Sousa leave, it would be near-disastrous for Fiorentina.

Scudetto Threat Factor: 0/10

Fiorentina would be lucky to compete for Champions League spots this season.

Roma Threat Factor: 3/10

La Viola certainly have the potential to beat Roma head-to-head, but that doesn't necessarily mean that the two clubs will be close to each other in the table at the end of the year.