Diego Forlan, a striker from Uruguay, captivated the world during 2010. In the span of five months, Forlan won the UEFA EUROPA League Cup, The UEFA Super Cup and entertained the world during the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Forlan earned the FIFA Golden Ball award: the tournaments best player. In 2011, Forlan enjoyed more International success, when Uruguay won the 2011 COPA America, scoring two goals in the finals, defeating Paraguay 3-0. On deadline day during 2011 transfer market, Forlan made a daring move from La Liga members, Atletico Madrid, to Italian Serie A giants, Internazionale.
Inter was desperate to fill a void left by the sale of Samuel Eto'o. Eto'o, the Cameroon striker accounted for 53 appearances with 37 goals, and average of a goal every 1.3 games. It is very hard to replace a Striker with that much production, but Forlan appeared up to the task. On paper, the acquisition seemed to be a safe and secure move. However, Forlan’s season began as a mammoth roller coaster, a slow and steady uphill climb, followed by a dramatic decent that appeared to have no hope of recovering.
On a rush deal, Inter president and general manager, Massimo Morratti, purchased Forlan from Atletico Madrid without researching fully the impact that the player could have immediately. Due to UEFA rules and regulations, Forlan was prohibited in competing for Inter during their Champions’ League group play. Atletico Madrid had participated in the UEFA EUROPA League qualification play-off round.
Forlan accepted his role to be primarily used in League play for the first half of the season. A rotation that theoretically benefit either Milito or Pazzini and Inter. After scoring a goal in his Serie A debut, a 4-3 defeat to Palermo, Forlan's luck seemed nonexistent for the Nerazzurri. While on international duty with Uruguay, Forlan suffered a torn hamstring. An injury that unfortunately requires a substantial amount of time to heal. When a permanent return was imminent, Forlan suffered a sprained ankle, and thus missed more time for the Nerazzuri. Plagued with injuries, and lack of performance, multiple manager changes, Forlan endured his second worst season as a professional footballer. Forlan made a total of 20 appearances for Inter and managed only two goals in the 2011/2012 season an average of one goal every nine games.
Statisically, Forlan endured a more horrific scoring year in 2001/2002 with Manchester United with a total of 18 appearances and zero goals. However, the lack of goals and fitness were obviously a large concern moving forward with Inter. What was more disappointing for Forlan, were the players that had scored equal or more goals. Yuto Nagatomo, Walter Samuel, Douglas Maicon, all defensive players, all had two goals in the 2011/2012 season. Ricardo Alveraz appeared in 29 games for Inter and recorded three goals, and an average of one goal every 9.6 games. Mauro Zarate managed 22 appearances with two goals, one goal ever 11 games. Thiago Motta, before being sold to PSG, managed 14 appearances with three goals, an average of one goal every 4.6 games. Forlan managed just one other goal for Inter, in a 2-2 draw against Catania.
With the conclusion of the 2011/2012 season, Forlan was desperately seeking a brand new year, and was very optimistic about his chances to help Inter return to European dominance in the coming year. In April, Forlan told Sky Sports: “I want to stay at Inter. You haven't seen the real Forlan yet... I wouldn't want to leave Inter like this. I like challenges and I wouldn't want to leave when the team are not in a good position."
In June, Forlan's father confirmed that Diego would live out his contract with Inter. However, on July 5th, Inter announced the termination of Forlan's contract with the club, and announced tat Forlan was p longer a member of the club. One day later, after his contract with Internazionale was terminated, Forlan signed a three year deal with Brazilin club, Internacional. It's hard watching a player fall out of favor, one that enters a club with so much promise, and never fills the potential or the hope that has been assigned to that player. A cruel component of the game of football. Forlan is a player that plays hard, like a driving force is behind his emotion and his ability. Forlan's sister, Alejandra, was involved in a major automobile accident in 1991 that killed her boyfriend and left her paralyzed. Forlan's driving ambition was to work hard on the pitch, to earn enough money so that his sister would always be able to afford her medical bills. The pace, the drive, the determination is clearly evident when Forlan plays the game of football. It is unique to understand the driving force behind a player and their decision to play the game of football.
It is truly the final disappointment to see the departure of Forlan at Inter.