Today, we dig deeper into the career of a Lazio striker who is ripping apart Serie A. We will analyze Ciro Immobile’s playing style, highlight his strengths while also looking at the possibility of a big transfer for the Italian.
Ciro Immobile is a 29-year-old striker, currently playing in Serie A. This season, Immobile has an astonishing average of a goal every 74 minutes in the league. The Lazio captain leads by example and he has the most goal involvements in Serie A with 23 goals and 5 assists. Lazio are currently third in Serie A, thanks largely to Ciro, who has been directly involved in 60% of his team’s goals this season. However, it hasn’t always been smooth sailing for Lazio’s captain. Immobile had a very unstable time in the game before finding a home and success in Rome.
Ciro started his journey in Football with Sorrento U17s in 2005 before signing for Juventus in 2009. Immobile never really got a look-in at Juve, he was loaned out three times during his time in Turin. He had loan stints at Siena and Grosseto in the 2011/12 season. After just 3 senior team appearances at Juventus, he signed for Genoa in 2012 before moving to Torino, Juventus’s crosstown rivals, a year later.
Immobile properly announced himself to the world in the 2013/14 season, winning the Capocannoniere (Serie A top scorer award) when he scored 22 goals in 33 games for Torino. This brilliant season saw him get a €18.5m move to Bundesliga Giants, Borussia Dortmund in 2014. However, Ciro never found his feet in Germany and he was loaned out to Europa League winners, Sevilla for the 2015/16 season. An unsuccessful season in Spain saw the Italian go back to Serie A, initially signing on loan for Torino.
Immobile’s career would finally find some stability when Lazio took a €9.45m gamble on him. A gamble that looks like an absolute masterstroke in hindsight, as Ciro has registered 115 goals and 30 assists in just 160 Lazio appearances. Immobile has scored 10 times for the Italian national team. He was part of the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Euros squad. The Italian is currently in the best form of his life and is expected to lead Italy’s attack in the upcoming Euros.
Playing style & strengths
Immobile is an excellent finisher, he has 26 goals for Lazio in just 25 appearances in all competitions this season. He is averaging 4.1 shots per game in 18 league games. Ciro loves a pop at goal from distance but at the same time is very smart with his shot selection. The tall striker avoids shots from bad angles. Lazio use the 5-3-2 setup under head coach Simone Inzaghi. A lot of Creativity and width in Lazio’s system comes from their wing-backs. While attacking crosses (for club and country) Ciro predominantly positions himself between the opposition right centre-back and right-back. Then, depending on the type of cross, Immobile either holds his position or tries to make a blindside run for a lofted cross.
His biggest strength is his ability to make penetrating forward runs. The Italian is always looking to test the opposition defense with his speed, power, and cunningness. Just like attacking crosses, Immobile prefers to make runs from the right side of the opposition’s defense. Ciro has very clever movement and he is always looking to make unmarked runs from defender’s blindside. Immobile is a very good forward to have in your team or to play with as he is brilliant at making decoy runs to create space for his teammates.
In Lazio’s 5-3-2, Ciro has developed an amazing understanding with Joaquin Correa. He regularly drops between the lines to link up play, while Correa looks to pin the opposition back. The Italian likes playing through balls for Correa or the attacking-midfielders like Luis Alberto and Milinkovic-Savic. He averages 1.7 key passes per game in 18 league games this season. Immobile is good at dribbling but rarely engages in a 1v1 battle as shown by an average of 0.4 dribbles per game in all competitions this season. He prefers to use his running and dribbling to create space for teammates
Is a potential transfer on the cards?
Any forward who scores 23 goals in one of the best leagues in the game will be linked with many big teams and Ciro is no different. He is being mentioned as a replacement for the Injured Harry Kane at Tottenham. Liverpool, Juventus, Chelsea, and Everton are rumored to be interested too. There are multiple problems with Immobile’s transfer. Firstly, he has finally settled at a club after being inconsistent for so long. Ciro loves Rome and Lazio fans adore their captain. It’s unlikely that he will want to leave his stable position.
Being in such a rich vein of form, Lazio will demand a massive fee for the Italian. Then, there is the small matter of player’s age, as the Italian turns 30 on February 20th. If I had to pick a side that would benefit the most from purchasing Immobile’s services in January, I would choose Everton. They have a world-class Italian coach in Ancelotti. They are playing the 5-2-1-2 system, which suits Ciro perfectly.
Chelsea and Manchester United can use an experienced forward, who guarantees goals as well. However, they might be reluctant to spend over €50m on a striker, who is about to hit his thirties. Juventus may gamble to sign Immobile once again, however, Liverpool are also unlikely to go after Ciro. All that is, IF he wants to leave Lazio.