Ciro Immobile: Excellent in Italy, Underwhelming Abroad

Lazio striker Ciro Immobile was one of the most talked-about individuals in the 2019/20 season. The Italian helped the Biancocelesti to return to the UEFA Champions League after 13 years by scoring 36 goals, and for the third time in his career, was the top scorer (Capocannoniere) of the Italian Serie A; only this time around, he also received the European Golden Boot as a pleasant bonus. While it is debatable that Ciro was the world’s best striker this past season, it is important to note that his career path has not been an easy one. The Italian has changed many clubs, both in Italy and abroad, until he found the right organization for himself. The football player blamed his coaches and teammates for his failures and could not get a foothold anywhere; by the time he was 30, Ciro had come a long way (even trying his luck abroad in Germany and Spain) but he only became a star by performing in his country of birth with Lazio. Below is a timeline – in order – of his career.

Ciro’s Wanderings: Italy, Germany & Spain

Ciro Immobile / Juventus, Source- Sportskeeda
Ciro Immobile / Juventus, Source- Sportskeeda

The real football adventure for Immobile began in 2007, when Ciro joined the Juventus Academy from Sorrento’s youth team. This promotion opened up the potential for a great future for the individual from a suburb in Naples. He joined their Primavera, where he performed very well; the young footballer even got some minutes in Serie A.

Ciro Immobile / Genoa
Ciro Immobile / Genoa

While Juventus were optimistic with Immobile, they did not hurry to involve him in the main team. They actually decided that the young man needed to gain experience. In 2010, the Bianconeri sent the player to Siena, where he played on a loan basis. After that, Ciro had two more loan spells with Grosetto and Pescara; but unconvinced by his performances during his time away from the club, Juventus decided to sell him to Genoa in 2012 for just €4 million.

Ciro Immobile / Torino, Source- Getty Images
Ciro Immobile / Torino, Source- Getty Images

Just a year later, the Bianconeri bought the forward back for €2.75 million and resold him to Torino for €13.5 million. Immobile had a bright season for the Granata, scoring 22 goals in 33 games. At the same time, in the 2013/14 season, Ciro became the top Serie A scorer.

Ciro Immobile / Borussia Dortmund, Source- Getty Images
Ciro Immobile / Borussia Dortmund, Source- Getty Images

In July 2014, Robert Lewandowski left Borussia Dortmund. The Bumblebees had to replace the Pole. The Germans paid attention to Immobile, who was lighting it up in his country. As a result, Borussia bought the forward from Torino for €18.5 million. However, the transfer proved to be unsuccessful. Throughout the entire season, Ciro scored only three goals in the Bundesliga, spending an average of 40 minutes on the pitch per match. This was because The Bumblebees made Pierre-Emeric Aubameyang their main striking force, leaving the Italian to find a new team.

Ciro Immobile / Sevilla, Source- Daily Mail
Ciro Immobile / Sevilla, Source- Daily Mail

Ciro joined Sevilla on loan hoping to get more playing time and find form. However, in Spain, Immobile did not get on well either. He played only eight matches in La Liga in half a season, managing to score just two goals. Despite his subpar performance and output, in January 2016, the Red-Whites bought the player from Borussia for €11 million. They then immediately loaned him to Torino (where he had performed very well in the past), but this time Ciro was not as prolific. In the second half of the season 2015/16, the forward played 14 Serie A matches and scored five goals.

Ciro-Immobile / S.S. Lazio, Source-ilpost.it
Ciro-Immobile / S.S. Lazio, Source-ilpost.it

Ciro found himself at a crossroads. Torino did not buy back the player, and Sevilla no longer needed him either. The Italian complained that in Germany he did not receive support from his teammates, and in Spain, from his coach. Fortunately (for both the Italian club and the player), Lazio showed interest in Ciro. In Summer 2016, the Eagles bought the forward from the Spanish club for €9.5 million. Immobile – accustomed to travelling to different cities and countries – definitely did not expect this transfer to be as decisive for him (and for his career) as it has been to date…

Lazio & Ciro Immobile

Ciro Immobile and Simone Inzaghi / S.S. Lazio, Source- Official S.S. Lazio
Ciro Immobile and Simone Inzaghi / S.S. Lazio, Source- Official S.S. Lazio

In July 2016, Lazio was left without a Manager. Marcelo Bielsa refused to work with the team just a few days after signing a contract; the Argentine left the Italian capital in a scandal, and the Eagles urgently needed to find a new coach. Simone Inzaghi, who had already managed the club for seven matches in the past, was appointed Manager of the Biancocelesti first team.

The new coach needed a hardworking centre forward with good physicality and an ability to read the game. Immobile had all of these qualities. Inzaghi saw and revealed his main abilities, making him a formidable force in the final stages of attack. In his first season at Lazio, the forward scored 23 goals in 36 games. In the 2017/18 campaign (his second season in Rome), the Italian scored 29 goals, making him the top scorer of Serie A for the second time in his career.

Ciro Immobile / S.S. Lazio, Source- Official S.S. Lazio
Ciro Immobile / S.S. Lazio, Source- Official S.S. Lazio

Immobile worked perfectly with Inzaghi. During the first season after Ciro’s arrival, the specialist started building the game around him. The footballer finally had a Manager who trusted him completely. Inzaghi made a scoring machine of Immobile and now he is one of the best centre forwards in Europe. He sees the pitch very well, opens up well, and uses space correctly. At the same time, the Italian is not greedy. If the player sees a teammate in a better position to shoot than himself, he passes them the ball.

Immobile only reached his peak form by the age of 30, namely in the 2019/20 season. In the course of the previous campaign, Ciro had bad matches, but he still managed to score 36 goals – more than monsters like Cristiano Ronaldo and Robert Lewandowski. Skeptics point to the fact that last season the Italian scored many penalty shots (14), but hardly anyone would say that the footballer did not deserve the European Golden Boot.

Final Thoughts

Lazio failed when the 2019/20 season restarted and lost the chance to win the Scudetto a few rounds before the Italian championship ended. However, the past campaign was still a powerful one for Immobile, despite all the difficulties faced by the Eagles. An inspired Ciro will try to perform even better next season; one in which Lazio will play in the UEFA Champions League and try again to be a contender for Scudetto. According to the sportsbooks at onlinecasinosnoop.com, Lazio are listed with 20/1 odds to win Serie A this upcoming season. Immobile has one more reason not to relax: Euro 2020. If Ciro does not lose his form during the season, he will be the main striking force for the Italian national team. Immobile is now mature enough to become one of the leaders of the country’s main team. However, everything will depend on the footballer himself. Ciro set the bar high primarily for himself and now has no right to lower it.