Friday July 25 2014
Lotito and Tare humiliated again

The failure to complete the signing of Davide Astori is only the latest in a long line of botched deals and poor decisions at Lazio, explains Alasdair Mackenzie.

The incompetence of Lazio’s hapless duo Claudio Lotito and Igli Tare left supporters of the Roman club squirming in their seats this week - and not for the first time. In a bizarre turn of events that most Laziali will still be struggling to comprehend, Davide Astori sensationally signed for rivals Roma on loan from Cagliari despite reportedly being only hours away from securing a move to the Biancocelesti.

Weeks of negotiations between the representatives of Lazio and Cagliari had seemingly almost closed a deal, but the sensational turnaround has instead left Tare and Lotito red-faced and under fire from the club’s faithful. After all, it is not exactly the first time they have failed to complete what seems a done deal, having failed at the last to complete moves for Keisuke Honda in 2012 and Burak Yilmaz in 2013.

Lazio legend Pino Wilson called it ‘an embarrassing situation for Lazio’, adding that: “if quality centre-backs do not arrive, this mercato will be considered a failure.” He is quite right. An ageing, error-prone defence was the most evident flaw of Lazio’s inconsistent side last season and at least two new defenders will be required if the club are to fulfil their ambition of getting back into Europe.

The fans are evidently not convinced that Tare is capable of delivering the players needed. Following the collapse of the Astori deal, the Albanian sporting director was confronted by angry supporters demanding answers. They didn’t get many, only the excuse that: “these things can change from one moment to the next.”

The other long-standing target for the club is Feyenoord’s Stefan De Vrij. However, after an impressive World Cup campaign the 22-year-old has been heavily linked with a move to Louis van Gaal’s Manchester United, who are willing to pay big money for the player. Lotito’s unwillingness to offer much more than €7m for the talented defender smacks of naivety and will likely see the Aquile outbid and once again rueing a missed opportunity. 

Furthermore, the latest name to emerge as a transfer target is that of Sebastian De Maio, not exactly one to get the fans’ mouths watering. Although the additions so far have been encouraging – Dusan Basta, Marco Parolo, Filip Djordjevic and the full ownership of Antonio Candreva – they do not address the main flaw of the side, which is inarguably the defence.

Basta’s arrival will be crucial due to his versatility, as the Serbian will almost certainly be called upon during one of Abdoulay Konko’s inevitable spells on the treatment table. But otherwise, no defensive reinforcements have arrived, with the only change being Giuseppe Biava’s departure to Atalanta. The fans will demand top-level additions, particularly given Lotito’s continuous vows of signing a team of ‘champions’ and taking the club back into the Champions League.

Most worryingly, this week’s events not only saw the club’s negotiators fail in yet another transfer deal but provided proof that Lotito and Tare have failed to learn anything from their previous failures. Should they wish the club to return to Serie A’s higher echelons, the chequebook will need to be opened and quick decisions made.

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Have your say...
Sam De Martino you are spot on about Mancini and Italy. He is the luckiest manager in history to be gifted all those serie A titles then go to open chequebook job at Man City. He finally got found out at Galatasaray. Loved him as a player but he's not a good manager. Italy will not go anywhere with him in charge. Very disappointed Conte isn't interested
on the 1st August, 2014 at 7:57pm
What was Tavecchio thinking, what possessed him to say what he said. In my view he should step down. Albertini is the man for the job. Good luck to Romulo at Juve, hope to see him playing for Italy soon. He is a versatile player with quality, very underated the job he does in my view. We are trying to kick out racism and the favourite for FIGC president says what he said, disgraceful. If he is elected now it will further divide Italy and hinder progress in my view.
on the 27th July, 2014 at 7:26pm
It seems conte has turned down Italy job, very disappointed with this. Looks like Mancini, I cant see us going forward with him or challenging for honours. Anyone agree or do people have faith in Mancini? Really pleased Jorginho wants to play for Italy, he is a top player that will only get better. Albertini would be my choice for President, not just because of events this week. He is passionate and has some good ideas, we need to all start pulling in the same direction.
on the 27th July, 2014 at 11:19am
I think looking back over the years both us and Lazio have been starved of success. We both have under achieved over the years. We both should have won more scudetto s and done better in Europe. It would be great if both clubs where dominate and fighting for honours. When Lazio got the later stages of Europa league I wanted them to win. I am a die hard Roma fan but cant understand why people don't support all Italian teams in Europe. Its for the good of our league.
on the 27th July, 2014 at 11:15am
Yes Sam De Martino you are right ,Lotito is a cancer for Lazio .He is trying to build a team to win Serie B
on the 27th July, 2014 at 2:11am
Sam is kinda right Lazio couldn't land Astori because he most likely didn't want to go there. Roma is definetly on the up they probably could have been further along if they wouldn't have wasted a season with zemen. Lazio or more accurately Lotito seem as if they have no real ambition sorta like Milan talking big but not truly doing anything
on the 26th July, 2014 at 10:17pm
In response to "Angry Laziale" we are very much awake and ready to go. We have a really good squad. Looking at your team the only player I would take is Candreva, Klose is top draw but too old. Your team is average at best, no class at all. Lotito is a roma fan he must be as he is destroying your club. I almost feel sorry for Lazio. No player wants to go to Lazio, Astori choose us and De Vrij will likely go to Man u. Lazio should focus on Serie C players they may come you never know.
on the 26th July, 2014 at 6:45pm
In response to "Tam" another Lazio fan living in the past. Only a Lazio fan could rave about winning the coppa italia. The facts are clear we are a team on the up and Lazio are on the decline, looking forward to seeing Lazio finish mid table this season and probably lose candreva soon as well. We have every chance of winning the scudetto and having an ok run in champ league. Can anyone remember last time Lazio played in the champions league? Any player given a choice would choose Roma over lazio
on the 26th July, 2014 at 6:36pm
@ Sam De Martino:

without your american investors, I believe your team would be the same as ours? Previously (as far as I remember) Roma was acting similarly to Lazio's market strategy which is obtaining players with expired contracts. Shame the modern football is different now, you pay more u get more!

still with the money spent on your team we managed to beat you. LULIC 71 BRO HELL YEAH!
on the 26th July, 2014 at 1:54pm
Sam De Martino I thought all the Rioma were sleeping.Good to see you awake
on the 26th July, 2014 at 11:47am
FORZA ROMA. Lazio are a mediocare club no ambition or prospects. We are on the up, back on champ league, new stadium on the horizon, a good squad, strengthening all the time, good owners. The future is bright. Astori went to roma because he wants to come to a big club with prospects, not a little club with no ambition. Candreva to go to Juve would be funny, Klose to retire in the summer. Magic. Lazio are a mid table team at best. FORZA ROMA
on the 26th July, 2014 at 9:15am
Wait for it the best is yet to come..... Last minutes of the window we will sell Candreva to Juventus and not replace him
on the 25th July, 2014 at 9:10pm
@ anonymous only Zapata is an international standard. The rest despite their ages don't even get near any national team. Alex doesn't get near the Brazilian squad and look at their defence! Granted lazio's defence is rubbish but at least you're trying to do something about it. Milan conceded 49 goals last season and have only added a defender who they got on a free and Galliani thinks we're sorted.
on the 25th July, 2014 at 6:10pm
Every transfer window Lotito always always declares to strengthen Lazio. The result is always the same: losing star players and signing mediocre ones. He just doesn't have enough lazialita inside his hearts.
on the 25th July, 2014 at 5:58pm
Yes Mr Lazio i agree we are a joke but i can't seem to laugh. If Lotito wants to save money, sell the club
on the 25th July, 2014 at 4:35pm
Lazio remind me of Milan.

They talk about getting players (Iturbe, Criscito, Martinez/Astori, De Vrij), but end up getting inferior versions.

Lazio needed to get Astori and De Vrij STRAIGHT AWAY after last season ended. Not spend 2 months messing about as they always do trying to save a million or two.

It costs them in the long run as season ticket sales/ no European football/sponsorship etc are all affected by these delays and failures.
on the 25th July, 2014 at 4:07pm
They got Alex. And also have Rami, Mexes, and Zapata. They need FB, but I would still take Milan's defense over Lazio's anyday.
on the 25th July, 2014 at 3:27pm
lolito should have sold the club to the Russian least he would have paid 7 million euros for Astori instead of always wanting to pay nothing and expect to be in Europe...we are a joke
on the 25th July, 2014 at 3:23pm
Another three goals conceded against Olympiakos. It's just not acceptable. Any team that plays against Milan knows they can score. My only hope is that we concede so many goals on this tour that somebody somewhere in that club comes to the realisation that our defence is crap.
on the 25th July, 2014 at 1:27pm
Sorry the club that has been most humiliated by this is Milan. At least Lazio and Inter thought that signing defenders might be a good idea. Milan are not even looking. They weren't even in the market for a defender. They think they have it covered. Astori is a Milan youth product. We shouldn't have let him go in the first place. Now he's gone to one of our supposed rivals (although at this rate our rivals are now Parma and Torino). This has to be one of the most infuriating transfers.
on the 25th July, 2014 at 1:18pm

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