Inter Milan are a club in transition. Well at least that's what they keep telling us. But the truth of the matter is they are old. Old like your captain was older than your previous manager old. But that was all supposed to change last year right? RIGHT?
That's what bringing in Andrea Stamaccioni was supposed to fix. He being the former Primavera manager who despite not having his full managing credentials (he just recently obtained them), was brought in to bridge the gap between his Next Gen Series winners and the first-team. That ended with a 9th place finish, and a squad in which eight out of nineteen (42%) players that made 10+ Serie A appearances were over thirty. Moreover, bringing in a 35 year-old Tomasso Rocchi as reinforcement to their already all-over-30 club strikers, when they had a 19 year-old Marko Livaja netting 4 goals in the Europa League Group Stages. You may be asking yourself what does this have to do with Chelsea, and more importantly, Wallace? A lot, actually.
Inter Milan is a club that has a poor track record with young players. Actually, this is an Italian problem in general, but bear with me. Just one peek at some of the players that Inter nurtured only to cast away for other clubs to reap the benefits is enough to spark "what if?" conversations for years to come. Balotelli. But he had issues with the club, you might say, despite breaking through at a young age. Well how about Mattia Destro? Who has already scored for the Azzuri? Or Leonardo Bonucci? Or *gulp* Andrea Pirlo? In the last couple years they've also let go young talents like Philippe Coutinho and Luc Castaignos (who has 17 league goals since returning to Holland last season). Point being Inter's record with young players whether through their academy (which has proven it can produce talent) or otherwise, leaves a lot to be desired. And Chelsea still went ahead with the loan, as the player wished. Perhaps it was because of new manager Walter Mazzarri.
If you've been paying attention to Serie A at all, you'd know that Inter had made a strong start to the season barring their last result against league-leaders Roma. Much has been credited to Mazzarri, who managed Napoli to a 3rd and 2nd place finish in his four years. He also groomed Marek Hamsik, Edinson Cavani, and Lorenzo Insigne into very productive players. Surely this would bode well for Wallace right? Not quite. Mazzarri's preferred formation is a 3-man backline with wingbacks. The current starter at RWB, which would be Wallace's logical position, is Jonathan and Nagatomo at LWB. But, when Jonathan is out, Nagatomo switches to RWB and Pereira (as awful as he is) comes in on the left. This has limited Wallace to just 2 substitute appearances in 8 games this season so far (7 league, 1 Coppa Italia), and it's hard to see how Wallace would get significant playing time, barring major injuries.
via i1.ytimg.com Wallace--New man in? Or odd man out?
While it was courteous of Chelsea to loan Wallace to his preferred destination, there are certainly questions regarding if it was the right move for the player's development. And with rumours circulating that he dreams of playing at Real Madrid, it seems that more is being written about his dreams and decisions than for his play. I guess that's what happens when you loan a young player to a club that has struggled in the league the past two seasons, and despite realizing that youth is the way forward, continue to bring in older much more expensive players instead of bringing their own players through. Oh wait, that sounds familiar...