Sinisa Mihajlovic, in the press conference that opened his tenure at Sampdoria, hinted that he doesn’t like to play with the three-man defense, a system often used by Delio Rossi.
In the first training sessions, he confirmed the direction trying a 4-2-3-1. De Silvestri-Mustafi-Gastaldello-Costa composed the defense, Palombo and Maresca the two holding midfielders, then Gabbiadini-Krsticic-Soriano behind Pozzi, the lone striker.
The main goal for Mihajlovic right now is to give Sampdoria an identity as the constant tactical changes made by Delio Rossi really hurt the mechanisms. The question is: can be this 4-2-3-1 a solid base for the future?
Sampdoria can count on Mustafi, Gastaldello, Costa, Regini and the never used Fornasier as CB, but they lack in depth in the defensive flanks, as only De Silvestri is a true fullback, while Mustafi can adapt on the right and Costa and Regini on the left.
They can use Palombo, Obiang, Maresca and Krsticic as pivots. The recovery of Maresca (he was excluded from the team) can give a boost in creativity. Anyway, Krsticic-Obiang has been a very reliable and all around pair so far.
The problems comes in CAM position. Krsticic is not natural in that role, Soriano hasn’t shown much so far in his career, Bjarnason failed to match his good performances at Pescara this year.
As for the wingers, Gabbiadini can play on the right (like at Bologna last year), but he’s limited in that position. Sansone and Eder can play on both flanks, but they are very offensive. Gavazzi, Wszolek and Barillà are true wingers, but they have not been impressive so far.
As for the striker, Pozzi is a solid choice but Gabbiadini too can play as a reference point. The third option would be Andrea Petagna.
If this is Mihajlovic’s choice, Sampdoria will definitely need to find some reinforcement in January.