AS Roma Match Program (F. Viola) He ended his career at Roma, but he also spent part of his career in Florence. It may have only been for 6 months, but his time there left its mark. “I had a long career, and they were the only team I ever left in January,” says Federico Balzaretti, who is now part of Roma’s backroom staff.
AS Roma Match Program (F. Viola) He wasn’t born in Cesena, but the Emilian city is like home for him now. Francesco Antonioli played 145 times for Roma, 10 of which were in the Coppa Italia, winning the scudetto and a Supercoppa with the Giallorossi. Now he’s Cesena’s goalkeeping coach, and while he’s preparing for an always emotional return to the Olimpico, he says that “Life’s good in Cesena, there’s the right sort of relaxed atmosphere to allow us to work well here.”
Ex-Roma forward Antonio Cassano has said that his former-team mate Francesco Totti can keep playing at the highest level for Roma for at least another couple of seasons yet.
Il Messaggero (Alessandro Angeloni, Stefano Carina, Massimo Caputi and Ugo Trani) People have said that, as a person, he’s a different class and someone who is culturally above average. After spending about an hour with him at Trigoria, we can confirm that’s true: Edin Dzeko is a different class, and culturally above average. A man of substance, not just playing the act. He’s philosophical. He’s simple, sincere, serene. Cheerful. He also smiles when he talks about his mistakes and the insults directed at him. He’s slightly surprised when he sits down to see multiple cameras and four open notebooks in front of him. “How many of you are there?” he exclaims, as if to ask why there is so much attention being given to him. “This isn’t an interview, it’s a forum,” Edin jokes. It soon becomes a – very simple – conversation, which Dzeko uses to tell his story. “If you have any problems, just speak in English,” we suggest to him. But he chooses not to: he always speaks in Italian, however he can, even when he inevitably finds a hole in his vocabulary and struggles to find the right words. Edin stops, thinks, finds the right word (and if he doesn’t find it, he invents one) and carries on, just like he does after he misses a chance in front of goal. Mistakes, (pot)holes, we’re used to everything in Rome. “Rome is a wonderful city, especially for someone who has lived in places like Manchester and Wolfsburg. Of course, it can be difficult to drive around – the streets are like Sarajevo’s after the bombing. You can see that it’s a city in difficulty, in crisis. It needs investment, the streets can’t be left abandoned like this.”
Roma’s former sporting director, Walter Sabatini, has spoken to Rete7 about his time with the Giallorossi, explaining that he simply had to leave the club but has always been and will always be a tifoso.
Last summer Roma spent big on Gerson to prise him away from Fluminense, much to the disappointment of Barcelona, but the Brazilian has taken time to settle in at the Giallorossi. After a slow first few months during which he primarily featured in the Europa League, he was given a chance by Luciano Spalletti to start last weekend’s game against Juventus but lasted just 45 minutes. In an interview with Globoesporte, Gerson says that he doesn’t believe he has made the wrong choice in joining Roma and is confident about his future with the Giallorossi.
GianlucaDiMarzio.com (Francesco Pietrella) It’s impossible to tell the difference between them. “I’ve always struggled with it!” It’s a real challenge. “Who are we talking about, Matteo or Federico?” On the pitch they’re both elegant players: the former is a midfielder, the latter is a fantasista. “Technically they were exceptional even when they were 12 years old.” In a word, “twins”. They were so similar that he needed to take remedial action to tell them apart. “I coached 2 teams at Roma, both with players born in ’94. You know how I told them apart? I coached 1 of them on a Saturday, the other played on a Sunday. Sometimes it was the other way round, but that was the only way.” Former Roma youth coach Tovalieri smiles, thinking back. Those Ricci brothers who he used to coach are now both playing professionally: Matteo at Perugia, Federico at Sassuolo