In the former category there is goalkeeper Christian Abbiati, whose performances have run parallel with AC Milan's difficult start to the season. He has recently been left on the bench, with Marco Amelia favoured in goal.
Lorenzo De Silvestri has had a poor run since joining Sampdoria on loan, and has been regularly left out with Gaetano Berardi given the nod at right-back. Another rare starter is Matias Silvestre, who has started just twice since early September having struggled to adapt to the greater expectations of Inter following his move from Palermo in the summer.
The Argentine was brought in at Appiano Gentile largely as a replacement for Lucio, whose move to Juventus was nothing short of a disaster. The Brazilian made just one league appearance for the Bianconeri, leading to his contract being cancelled by mutual consent before the season had even reached its halfway point. Meanwhile, Udinese's indifferent campaign has not been helped by Pablo Armero's inability to emulate his form of previous seasons down the left flank.
Across the midfield there are some big names who have fallen short of expectations. Kevin-Prince Boateng was once a fans' favourite among Milanisti, but his performances this season have seen his stock fall to the extent that his first-team spot is under question, despite him having been given the prestigious No. 10 shirt.
Perhaps the biggest disappointment of the campaign has been Daniele De Rossi, whose poor form has led to speculation that he could leave Roma in January. Having not been chosen as part of the midfield axis, he has been unable to produce his best football, and he could well depart Trigoria next month.
They are joined by Senad Lulic, who has been a rare low-light for a Lazio side who have again pushed the traditional big names for a place among the country's elite. No longer the regular pick down the left, the Bosnian has been forced out by Stefan Radu on his return from injury, with Stefano Mauri taking the wing slot.
Alexandre Pato's record with injuries seems to go from bad to worse, and his latest setback has helped to restrict him to just 210 minutes of action in the league so far this term. With the possibility of a sale now being strongly considered, Milan may be about to free themselves of an almost permanent headache. Alessandro Matri may have been available for the entire campaign, but he has played few more minutes than Pato having found himself fourth or fifth choice for much of Juventus' season, following poor displays on those occasions he has been called upon.
But both players are surely outdone by Riccardo Meggiorini, who has taken part in 14 games so far without finding the net even once. As a result, Torino have favoured Alessandro Sgrigna alongside Rolando Bianchi since returning to the top flight.
|Games: 10 Clean sheets: 1
|Games: 5 Clean sheet: 0
||Games: 4 Clean sheet: 1
||Games: 1 Clean sheet: 1
||Games: 10 Clean sheet: 3
|Games: 13 Goals: 1
||Games: 10 Goals: 0
||Games: 15 Goals: 0
|Games: 4 Goals: 0
||Games: 8 Goals: 1||Games: 14 Goals: 0|