Matarrese, the loss of Perinetti, and the demise of Bari

Playing sensual football as they passed the ball in tantalising manner, Bari was the newly promoted side last season that won against the likes of Juventus and Palermo in spectacular fashion. Well organised, defensively solid and offensively strong, Giampiero Ventura had managed to continue Antonio Conte’s good work and ensured the league sat up and took notice as he guided them to 10th place. However this season paints a different picture. Sitting rock bottom, with relegation now looking to be a certainty, shocking scenes of anger broke out in training as over 200 Bari fans hurled abuse, spat on the players, released smoke bombs and even physically assaulted the team.
Looking at Bari, it is easy to point out all the problems. Due to poor methods of training most, if not all, the players have spent time in the infirmary leaving the Coach lacking in options. Those who have been fit have demonstrated their lack of motivation, producing in poor performances and so earning the title of mercenaries by the fans. New sporting director Guido Angelozzi has failed to actually fulfil his job description, carrying out perhaps the worst transfer campaigns of the season. His failure to land Sebastian Giovinco, and in finding adequate replacements to fill the void left behind by the departed Andrea Ranocchia and Leonardo Bonucci, expose him as truly inept. The employment of new Coach Bertolo Mutti, who could barely cut it in Serie B and who already seems to have given up on the fight against relegation, puts the icing on this Bari cake of failure
However the biggest problem this club has is the fact that Vincenzo Matarrese is still their President. A man who has long adopted an indifferent approach to governing, Bari have little chance of escaping this nightmare with him still in charge. Barely interested in raising enough money to drive the club forward, only the good work of ex-sporting director Giorgio Perinetti has stopped I Galletti from plummeting to the depths of failure sooner. As Michele Salomone, an Italian sports journalist, put it: “It is virtually impossible to base the survival of a football team on income solely arriving from ticket receipts and TV rights.” Matarrese’s biggest failure yet was letting go of the man who still managed to perform miracles in spite of a lack of funds.
Since his arrival at Bari, Perinetti breathed new life into the club and allowed the fans to dream. He uncovered hidden talents and, while spending little money, he somehow succeeded in introducing valuable players to the side. Leonardo Bonucci and Andrea Ranocchia are two examples of his great work. Furthermore he created a solid team, introduced great Coaches who knew how to work with the talent available, and allowed the side to successfully handle the threat of bankruptcy. His great work was further highlighted by the fact that when the majority of the exciting talent he introduced to the club were injured in the latter part of last season, Bari began to struggle to accumulate points.
Now with an attack that has only managed to score 14 goals and a defence that has already leaked 40, despite there being 12 games left of the season, it is fair to say that when Perinetti left, he took with him Bari’s future. Now all Bari are left with is an unbalanced squad with no partners for Paulo Barreto and Andrea Masiello, whilst Matarrese sits back and accepts his club’s demise.

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