Toni, Klose, di Natale – Oldies To Look Forward To

Earlier this week, Luca Toni, the man we featured in our Football Nomads section, penned a one-year extension to his deal at Hellas Verona, for whom he managed to score 22 goals last season. At 38 years of age now, it comes as no surprise that, before joining Hellas in 2013, the former Italian international was set for retirement. Whatever it was that swayed Toni’s decision at the time, Verona supporters and the general football audience alike can be grateful to have been able to witness the last two seasons. In 72 Serie A games, Toni managed to score an impressive 42 goals for the club and ended up winning last season’s golden boot.

Similar to Luca Toni’s situation, Miroslav Klose’s contract was about to run out at Lazio, but after months of speculation, the German too, decided to remain in Serie A. The World Cup top scorer of all time joined Roman club Lazio at the age of 33 in 2011. It is fair to say that Klose still wearing the Biancocelesti shirt today, is somewhat surprising, not due to a loyalty concern, but simply due to his age. His recent contract extension will take him past his 38th birthday and the prolific goalscorer will be able to continue his exploits in front of goal. Intriguingly, with 13 goals, the 37-year old German was Lazio’s top scorer last season and made a major contribution to the club’s surprising third-place finish. With Champions League football in sight, Klose will certainly enjoy his probably last season with his beloved Lazio.

Antonio di Natale is a living legend in Udine. Top scorer yet again for Udinese Calcio with 14 goals last season, the 37-year old seems to be getting better and better. Between 2009 and 2013, di Natale finished each season well above the 20-goal mark, becoming Serie A top scorer in 2010 and 2011. He has now scored an impressive 189 goals in 362 Serie A appearances for Udine and will be continuing his efforts next season. Going into his 13th season with the northern Italian club, the man who was born in Naples, has shown unbelievable levels of loyalty and could have left for bigger clubs at almost any stage of his career.

When the new Serie A season begins, many will be looking past these three players yet again, but at Hellas, Lazio and Udine respectively, the supporters know what kind of treats they are in for. It would not come as a surprise anymore, if one of the three ended up at the top of the league’s goal scoring charts again. We are excited to see these players in action again.