Roma President James Pallotta and director Walter Sabatini explained why they picked Rudi Garcia as Coach.
“We have been following Garcia for a few years and he represents the union of the Coaches we had and the Coaches they could’ve been,” said Sabatini in New York.
“They all brought something positive to the club and in my view Rudi represents the combination of all those best elements.
“Last but not least in our reasoning, his great desire for Roma. He has been thinking about the club for several days and wanted to prove to us his firm determination to come to Roma.”
“We are very, very excited to have Rudi Garcia join our family. I’m looking forward to many, many years with him,” said President Pallotta at a Press conference in New York.
President Pallotta was asked whether he should be taking a more active role in the club’s affairs after protests from fans that there was no real leadership in the city.
“You shouldn’t believe what you read. Let’s put all of this in perspective. I have actually only been President of Roma for the last 10 months, so many of the decisions – good ones and some bad – before I became President were made last August.
“I think the first real choice I’ve been involved with in the coaching side is with Rudi and I expect him to be with us for a long, long time.
“On a day to day basis we have a pretty talented team led by Italo Zanzi, who has also only been here for six months, so he has been getting to know everyone and has a good handle on things right now.
“Just because I’m not in Rome on a day to day basis has nothing to do with the effort I or others spend on the operations of Roma.
“I’m sorry if you think I disappoint you if I’m not quoted on a daily basis, but I refuse to believe we should be managing Roma in public.
“As far as Franco Baldini goes, I want to thank him for the time he spent with Roma, both on a professional and personal basis, as I had become very close to Franco. I think he’s done a lot of good things for Roma, it was time for him to make a change and I wish him all the best. We will always remain friends and he’ll always be a part of Roma.
“I promised Walter I’d be here for at least a week or a month over the summer. Maybe he’ll be asking me to come a lot less!”
Pallotta’s main project is building a new stadium for Roma, following in the footsteps of Juventus.
“I think in the next couple of months we’ll have a much more comprehensive showing of the plan we’ve been working on for the last 18 months. We’ve been working with the architects and are not that far off from where we want to be.
“I think people will be pleasantly surprised and it could be the best project seen in Europe, let alone Italy.
“We were chosen by Major League Soccer to play the All-Stars game in Kansas City. If we’d called them a year ago, there would’ve been silence on the other end of the phone. Instead they called us and it was an honour. We’ve also got another couple of dates we’ll announce pretty soon that will also be tremendous over the summer.
“We’ve got some expanded relationships on the Disney side. We’ve signed a deal with Nike, which very few teams have, because they believe in what we’re trying to create.”
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