Serie A soccer is finally back in action. Some things have changed drastically in the offseason, which will leave an impact on the 2022-23 campaign. Also, many clubs are still working on their transfer strategies to fill out their rosters before the end of the summer transfer window on September 1. Many teams in Italy look different than they did even. Coaches are impatient to know what their teams will look like, and fans as well. Let's go around Italy to examine where all 20 Serie A teams are as things stand as the new season officially kicks off.
Paramount+ is the only place to watch every minute of every Serie A match this season. Sign up now with offer code ITALY to get a special one month free trial. A subscription also gives you access to other sports content including the UEFA Champions League and Europa League, NWSL, NFL on CBS, and countless movies and shows. Get it all free for one month with promo code ITALY.
The teams that are in the race to win the Scudetto this season.
1. AC Milan (-)
The Rossoneri have to be considered as the leading candidates to win the Scudetto this season after they won the last edition for the first time in eleven years. The club has signed Divock Origi and Charles De Ketelaere for around $35 million from Club Brugge and they have also signed permanently Alessandro Florenzi from AS Roma. AC Milan allowed the fewest goals in Serie A last season, allowing just 31 goals all season.
2. Juventus (+1)
Juventus definitely improved their roster over the summer, signing free agents Paul Pogba and Angel Di Maria. Not only that, the club decided to sign the best defender of the past Serie A season Gleison Bremer and the Serbian winger Filip Kostic. The team is now very well positioned to fight for the title race and the expectations are definitely higher than last season as Massimiliano Allegri himself clearly stated that the target number one of the season is to win the Serie A trophy after missing taking home the Scudetto for the last two seasons.
3. Inter Milan (-1)
The Nerazzurri have to be considered as title contenders after a positive season last year under coach Simone Inzaghi, who came away with the Coppa Italia and the Supercoppa Italiana over Juventus as a consolation after failing to win the back to back Scudetto. It's been a pretty busy summer as Romelu Lukaku is back on loan, one year after joining Chelsea. Ivan Perisic, one of the best players of the past season, joined Tottenham as free agent and Inter Milan signed goalkeeper Andre Onana as free agent, winger Raoul Bellanova (€3 million for the loan with a €7 million option to buy included) and Kristjan Asllani from Empoli (€4 million for the loan with a €10 million obligation to buy). Additionally, Henrikh Mkhitaryan joined the Nerazzurri from AS Roma as a free agent, while Arturo Vidal, Matias Vecino, Andrea Ranocchia and Stefano Sensi and Alexis Sanchez all left the club.
Craving even more coverage of the world's game? Listen below and follow ¡Qué Golazo! A Daily CBS Soccer Podcast where we take you beyond the pitch and around the globe for commentary, previews, recaps and more.
Outside looking in
Clubs that are fighting to play in Europe next season.
4. AS Roma (+1)
There are a lot of expectations this season around Jose Mourinho's side after a very solid summer of transfer business. The Giallorossi signed free agents Paulo Dybala and Nemanja Matic, who is a player that Jose Mourinho knows really well from his past spells at Chelsea and Manchester United. The club also signed right back Zeki Celik from Lille, goalkeeper Mile Svilar from Benfica and Gini Wijnaldum on loan from Paris Saint Germain. Also, there were only a couple of exits, as AC Milan signed permanently Alessandro Florenzi and Olympique Marseille signed Jordan Veretout. Key player Nicolò Zaniolo, who was in talks with Juventus during the summer, is now expected to stay at the club despite the fact that his contract is expiring in the summer 2024 and talks over a renewal have stalled in the past months.
5. Napoli (-1)
It was a summer of change at Napoli, after players like Kalidou Koulibaly, Dries Mertens and Lorenzo Insigne all left the club. Luciano Spalletti's side now needs to begin a new cycle after finishing third in the league last year, their highest league finish since coming in second in 2018-19. Last year Napoli was tied with Milan for the fewest goals allowed with 31. They were third in the league in goals scored with 74, for a goal difference of +43, second best in the league behind Inter. Napoli also averaged 12 chances created per game, good for third in the league. That's a lot for this new crew to try and replicate.
6. Lazio (-)
Maurizio Sarri's side saw new players coming this summer, especially in defense as the club signed Mario Gila from Real Madrid, Nicolo Casale from Hellas Verona for around $7.7 million, and Alessio Romagnoli as a free agent after his contract with AC Milan expired in the summer. Lazio scored 77 goals last season (second in the league), allowed 58 goals (10th in the league), for a goal difference of +19 (fifth in the league). Lazio also had the league's highest pass completion rate of 87%.
7. Fiorentina (-)
Fiorentina want to improve on last year's performances, when the Viola finished 7th in Serie A with 62 points, greatly improving on their 13th place 2020-21 campaign. Nicolás González returns with Fiorentina this season after seven Serie A goals last season, a career-high. He led Fiorentina in goals after the departure of Dusan Vlahovic mid-season, when he joined Juventus. The club signed Serbian striker Luka Jovic from Real Madrid, goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini, former Shakhtar Donetsk's winger Dodô and Rolando Mandragora from Juventus.
8. Atalanta (-)
Gian Piero Gasperini decided to stay at the club, despite rumors of a possible change over the summer. Atalanta want to be back at the top of the Serie A table as last season they finished 8th with 59 points after finishing the prior two Serie A seasons with 78 points and in the top four spots. This was their worst Serie A performance since the 2015-16 season where it finished 13th in Serie A with 45 points. Atalanta ranked second in Serie A last season averaging 12.5 chances per game and ranked second as well averaging 1.9 expected goals per game.
Middle of the pack
These teams are definitely going to stay in the league but have little chance to play in European competitions next season.
9. Sassuolo (-)
Alessio Dionisi enters his second season in charge with higher expectations given how well he got hi team to play in the second half of last season. Gianluca Scamacca left the club as West Ham signed him for around $40 million and the club decided to replace him with former Inter Milan striker Andrea Pinamonti. Defensively, Sassuolo were not very good last season. They averaged 16 clearances per game (tied for 12th in the league), were last in the league in tackle percentage at 33%, and averaged 93 duels per game, 4th fewest in the league.
10. Torino (-)
Coach Ivan Juric has explicitly asked for more signings in these last weeks of the transfer window, after the club lost captain Andrea Belotti as a free agent and defender Gleison Bremer who was sold to Juventus in the summer for around $45.1 million. Bremer was second on Torino in both touches (1,973) and minutes played (2,894).
11. Udinese (-)
Andrea Sottil was appointed as Udinese manager after Gabriele Cioffi joined Hellas Verona this summer and Nahuel Molina left this offseason on a $22 million transfer to Atletico Madrid. He ranked third for Udinese with seven Serie A goals last season. However, the does return with its top two goal scorers from last season: Gerard Deulofeu (13) and Beto (11).
12. Bologna (+1)
Sinisa Mihajlovic's side needs something different after a disappointing season that started with a bit of European ambition, but ended in a 13th-place finish. Giovanni Sartori is now in charge of the transfer business as he was introduced as the club's new technical director by way of Atalanta. Mihajlovic hopes that Sartori can replicate what he has done at Atalanta and bring some fresh talent to his roster.
13. Hellas Verona (-1)
Similarly to Udinese, Cioffi is new to the club and is still waiting for some summer signings. He's also prepared to understand what will happen to striker Giovanni Simeone, who put together an incredible 2021-22 campaign with 17 goals and six assists, and is now in talks to join Napoli after the Azzurri sold Andrea Petagna to AC Monza.
14. Monza (-)
This is by far the most interesting team in Serie A. After selling AC Milan in 2017, Silvio Berlusconi and Adriano Galliani only waited one year before launching a new project. Despite the fact that the club was playing in the third division, the Monza project was forward-looking from the very beginning. They invested money on players but also on infrastructures -- the training center and the stadium -- on their way to bringing Monza to the first division for the first time in club history. With a clear goal to build a team that can finish in the top 10, they've signed Matteo Pessina from Atalanta, Alessio Cragno from Cagliari, Stefano Sensi on loan from Inter Milan and Andrea Ranocchia as a free agent. Most recently, the club signed striker Andrea Petagna from Napoli on loan with an obligation to buy the player permanently next summer.
These sides are struggling and are fighting to keep their spot in Serie A for next season.
15. Empoli (-)
Empoli finished 14th in the league last season, 11 points clear of relegation. Their highest ever top-flight finish came in the 2006-07 season where they finished 7th. Despite this, the club decided to change the coach and parted ways with Aurelio Andreazzoli and decided to appoint former Venezia coach Paolo Zanetti. Defensively, Empoli averaged 19 clearances per game (fourth in the league), 97 duels per game with a 47% success rate, and 53 ball recoveries per game (setting the league average).
16. Salernitana (+1)
Their roster looks consistently better compared to last summer when they needed a miracle to stay in the league in the second part of the year. Last season Federico Bonazzoli led the team with 10 goals, double his next closest teammates, Simone Verdi and Milan Djuric. Djuric also led the team with 33 chances created and tied Franck Ribery for the team lead in assists with three.
17. Spezia (-1)
Spezia finished 16th in the league last season, six points clear of relegation. Despite the result, coach Thiago Motta left the club and former Udinese manager Luca Gotti was appointed in the summer. Their 36 points were the fewest in a season since 2007-08, where their 33 point campaign saw them relegated from Serie B. This season will mark the 3rd consecutive season in the top flight for Spezia, an achievement in itself.
18. Sampdoria (-)
The club is working hard despite pretty difficult circumstances as it is still for sale. That's why there is not much money on the table for the summer with the ownership only working on loans and swap deals. They can't seem to afford a real budget for the summer transfer window and will try to make some changes in the last week of the window.
19. Lecce (-)
Lecce will be without its top scorer and top assist man from last season - 33-year-old Massimo Coda was sold to Genoa for $1.7 million this offseason. Coda scored 20 goals for Lecce in Serie B, most in the league, and his seven assists ranked tied for 5th in Serie B. The roster needs something more in the coming weeks of transfer business to hope to stay in the league next season.
20. Cremonese (-)
Their success in the Italian second division berthed a new opportunity in the top flight. But as things stand, based on summer activity, not enough has been done to guarantee a place in Serie A after this season. The roster definitely needs more experience and players that have already played in the first division to survive and avoid relegation.