Claudio Ranieri has rushed to defend Francesco Totti amid a huge Roma row. “It's not true that he destroys Coaches.”
Totti was warned by director of sport Walter Sabatini that he must “take a step back” and set his “vanity” aside to give Luis Enrique a chance to work.
The captain has a long history of butting heads with his managers and Ranieri was one of those rumoured to be pushed out by Totti's ‘faction' within the locker room.
“He is a formidable player and I can assure you it's not true that he destroys Coaches,” Ranieri told the Corriere dello Sport.
“Perhaps before speaking in public, and I'm referring to Franco Baldini here, it would've been more opportune to call Totti and speak to him face-to-face. I don't know the full story here, but controversy is never healthy.”
Although technically still general manager of England, Baldini has been working with Roma for several months and has undisguised tension with Totti.
“Roma have changed a great deal and they need time,” continued Ranieri. “Like all teams who start from scratch, they must be built slowly, without too many sudden quakes.
“The city of Rome is impatient, we know that well, but the squad is large and has quality. Luis Enrique needs to deal with it and I'm sure he'll manage.”