Wednesday May 21 2014
Garcia ‘believes’ in Roma project

Roma Coach Rudi Garcia says he believes in the project going on at the club and wants to stay at Stadio Olimpico.

The Giallorossi finished a highly impressive first season under the Frenchman’s guidance in second place in Serie A.

The tactician’s exploits this term led him to be linked to number of jobs at big clubs but, in an in-depth interview with L’Equipe, he revealed his commitment to his current role.

That said, the 50-year-old also once again stressed the need for his side to strengthen their squad in the summer as they prepare for their return to Champions League football.

“Yes we need to do that, we are playing in the Champions League,” Garcia said. “Because of some injuries we lost some players during the course of the season.

“If we start the season in the Champions League but without the team being stronger, we will be running against a brick wall. We need to keep our best players and strengthen the squad.

“The target is to not have to climb the mountain badly prepared. We don’t have the biggest resources but we will do all we can to attract players. We have had €80m worth of income and €50m worth of expenditures. So, we shouldn’t need to sell.

“That is not one of the conditions for me staying, but we have the resources to continue battling with Juventus and also to do well in the Champions League.

“The target of the owners is to make Roma one of the best clubs in Europe. You don’t reach this objective in one day, just as Rome wasn’t built in a day. But we are on the right track.

“I will talk about a renewal next season. The team will be in USA for a week on a promotional tour. Then, there will be all the time to discuss it.

“But there is no rush, I am under contract. I believe in the club’s project and I am happy here.

“It’s nice to see my name linked to big clubs, it’s recognition for my work. Roma are one of the most difficult teams to coach in Italy. But the rumours about my future don’t change anything. I want to stay.”

Garcia then commented on his tenure in Rome so far, his opinions of Juventus and the demands of dealing with the Italian media.

“I believed we could win the title until Juve beat Sassuolo on the 35th matchday. But I have no regrets, the danger is to be disappointed.

“Lots of people remember how we changed the atmosphere when I arrived at the start of the season.

“If you have said to me that we would manage to beat Roma’s previous Serie A points record and qualify directly for the Champions League, in Italy you can say ‘I would have signed for that with blood! I don’t have any regrets.

“Juve are not unreachable, but we had a few important problems after we won our first ten games at the start of the season.

“Juve had a stratospheric season, but they were a developing team, as their Coach Conte pointed out.

“My relationship with the Italian media? Let’s say you have to concentrate! After a match it is a marathon!

“While post-match commitments in France last a quarter of an hour, in Italy they last an hour and a quarter. Normally, I have to speak to Sky Sport, Mediaset, Rai TV, Radio Rai, Al Jazeera, then there is the Press conference and the club’s television station. And I always repeat the same things!

“Everything is going well at the moment but I’m not getting ahead of myself. I have the impression I have got a bit of credit in the bank, but everything is very delicate.”