Zdenek Zeman plays the 4-3-3 and has a particular taste in players, so it’s bizarre that Roma should sack him 48 hours after the transfer window has closed. New Coach Aurelio Andreazzoli is caretaker for a week or perhaps to the end of the season, but either way he has to make do with a squad created by and for Zeman.
The non-defending defender
As if Roma didn’t already have enough defenders who are considerably more effective in attack, they snapped up full-back Vasilis Torosidis for a nominal fee from Olympiacos. “Defending isn’t his strong point,” said his now former teammate Leandro Greco, suggesting the Greek international will fit right in.
Maarten Stekelenburg flew out to London for his medical on deadline day, but the transfer to Fulham never went through. Now Roma are dealing with two incredibly inconsistent and error-prone goalkeepers jostling for position and openly insulting each other. No wonder Mauro Goicoechea is so anxious he throws the ball into his own net.
De Rossi delight
There can be few doubts that Daniele De Rossi is delighted at Zeman’s early exit, but the club and fans must also be breathing a sigh of relief that Roma didn’t sell. There had to be the temptation with Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester City and Manchester United interested while the midfielder was rotting on the bench as Zeman continued to pick Panagiotis Tachtsidis instead. The season starts now for Capitan Futuro.
Roma’s transfer window was less about who they signed and more who they didn’t release. Nico Lopez scored on his Serie A debut and then vanished, but the 19-year-old Uruguayan has been notching up great performances at the South American Youth Championship throughout January. He even finished top scorer in the tournament with six goals. With Mattia Destro out following meniscus surgery and Zeman gone, he could get a chance after all.
It’s difficult to comment on a transfer session that brought in one player, did not sell any first team options and concluded just days before the Coach was sacked. Roma made the commitment to stand by Zeman’s vision in their buying strategy, but then shoved him out the door. Now Andreazzoli or whoever becomes a more permanent pick must form a team with the players who started the season.