Chelsea wing-back Emerson Palmieri has given an appraisal of former Inter striker Gabriel Barbosa’s (Gabigol) time with the Nerazzurri.
Speaking to Brazilian football podcast Bola da Vez, as reported by FCInter1908, the Italian international gave a positive assessment of the 24-year-old’s talent, but suggested that he was too young and inexperienced to make it work with the Nerazzurri.
Serie A, and Inter in particular, can be a difficult environment for young players, and Emerson believes that this was ultimately the reason why Gabigol didn’t make the impact that he was expected to.
The Brazilian joined Inter in the summer of 2016 where he was expected to blossom into a significant talent, but he rarely showed his true ability, disappointing many observers.
However, Emerson still believes that the 24-year-old has what it takes to thrive during a second shot in Euorpean football if he is given the chance to show his best form.
“I think he will return to play in Europe,” said Emerson, “because everyone knows who he is, everyone is seeing what he is doing, especially in Brazil and Brazilian football.”
He continued, “In Europe he arrived with high expectations to a prestigious club like Inter, they expected a lot from a kid. For the value of the transfer, they expected him to be like [former Inter striker Diego] Milito, who won the Champions League. Someone who, when he got there, would be ready right away and would score in every game. He was still a kid who was growing up and learning.”
Emerson commented on the adjustment period faced when joining a Serie A team as a young player, stating that “I think it’s normal that one can have difficulties. The Italian league, tactically speaking, is boring and difficult.”
He continued, “The positioning of the body, how you have to manipulate the ball, limits you a bit sometimes. Or there is also a coach who limits you. I too have had cases in which a coach did not want you to stop the ball with the sole of your foot.”
However, despite the player’s difficulties when at Inter, Emerson still believes he is a top talent, stating that “I too should have had a little more patience with him, having played with him. I have always had a sense of his abilities, and now he has been demonstrating the with Flamengo, for years now.”