By Alton Harewood
SPOTLIGHT ON: Mirco Antenucci
DOB: Aug 9, 1984
POB: Termoli, Italy
Height: 1.78m (5ft 910n)
Position: Forward (Striker)
When 30 year old Mirco Antenucci arrived in England as the 9th of ten signings during this transfer window, of this international goal-scorer of mystery it had been said by Italian observers earlier this year that they just could not understand why he scored freely when on loan but when back at Catania he struggled to do so. (Source: tuttomercatoweb.com) In the same article they do add that 'goals are in his blood.' That is good news for a Leeds side that has been starved of goals so far this season! In fact, in his recent captaincy of Serie B side Ternana Calcio Mirco scored 19 goals in 40 games, well up with a certain number 44 that recently left Leeds. This is a feat Mirco had not achieved since his 24 for Ascoli on load during the 2009-2010 season.
Bringing 12 years of experience to the club, Mirco must be in the running for the captain armband at some point. His leadership skills are clear and his strengh as a poaching goal-scorer was well viewed on YouTube highlights that show him often breaking down offside traps to give himself time to finish and score. Some journalists have their doubts due to the number of clubs he has played for, but it should be remembered that he spent a good deal of time on loan when he was at Catania suggesting that he is probably well suited to second tier football.
By building a small band of Italian brotherhood from defence through midfield to attack, Cellino appears to be trying to work with what he knows from the Italian Serie divisions. He is also able to manage his budget bringing in players that have experience and can contribute quickly, if not immediately.
Time will tell if Mirco becomes a crowd favourite, if he puts them away like he did last year, there is little doubt that the Elland Road faithful will cheer him on.
Its down to you Mirco - benvenuto to Leeds!