Friday September 9 2011

Former Lazio Coach Davide Ballardini is unimpressed with their transfer strategy. “They signed old players, so it's just about surviving.”

The tactician launched a broadside at the Biancocelesti who have reinforced over the summer with Miroslav Klose and Djibril Cissè.

“Lazio have signed important players, but they are also old players,” Ballardini told Radio Manà Manà.

“It's just about surviving and nothing more. There are no strong directorial ideas at the club.”

He was in charge when Lazio famously froze Goran Pandev and Cristian Ledesma out of the squad over a contract dispute. For months he insisted it was only a tactical decision and not one handed down by President Claudio Lotito.

“My mistake was right at the start, because I shared the club's party line. There were some precise agreements on replacing the player, but the promises were not kept.

“I took this error with me for the rest of my time there and paid a heavy price. When I was there, we didn't work on the market at all and the squad was inadequate, plus I wasn't allowed to use Pandev and Ledesma.

“In January Lazio signed five or six players, but the damage had already been done.”

There was more controversy at the Olimpico this summer when Mauro Zarate was sent to Inter following a row with Coach Edy Reja.

“Lately he was showing the worst side of himself because of the environment around him, the club and the team,” claimed Ballardini.

“He needed a change of air for his own good and that of Lazio. He has great quality, if only he can use it to help the squad. He needs to be more consistent and professional, both on and off the field. Zarate has to recognise the influence of a leader and there are many of those at Inter.”

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