An alternative to the Toby Alderweireld campaign emerged overnight, as Calciomercato.it reports that Roma have asked about the availability of Gremio’s Argentinian centre-back Walter Kannemann. The defender was heavily linked with a move to Arsenal last month, though nothing materialised since then. It’s believed his transfer would cost the Serie A trio of interested clubs - Roma, Atalanta and Fiorentina - between 12-15 million euros.
Is it worth backing down on Alderweireld to pay half elsewhere? The only glaring problem with Kannemann is that you’re getting the finished, rounded-out product here all the same. He’s 28 years old and has reportedly struggled, both through injury and other set-backs (I’m guessing and going off comments online as I haven’t seen him play), to beat out Rojo and Otamendi in Argentine’s starting lineups over recent years. But the flip side is that Kannemann—senior player that he is—does impress and looks very workable for Paulo Fonseca’s side.
Left-footed to balance out the backline, showing the ability to both zonal and man-mark depending on the game, comfortable in dribbling past opponents, picking out passes and aggressive in his tackling and blocks. There’s no doubt these highlights vids show the best of a player, but there’s a lot of Kannemann’s best to go round.
Plus there’s just something about Roma going back to the days of signing a left-footed defender named Walter that we’ve got to find a cheap plug for right here, right now.
‘The New Wall’ at the heart of defence? Kannemann may just be the perfect compliment to Gianluca Mancini that Roma never knew she was looking for.