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Back In The Saddle Again

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I'm back, Roma's back. Whether or not that's a good thing is another issue. Keeping it short and sweet today, but we'll be back and running at full-throttle tomorrow.

Totti Bids Adieu To The Azzurri:

I heard it, but I don't think he's done for good (denial is the first step, I know I know). One cannot blame his decision though. There will be a whole different post dedicated to this.

Friendlies That Aren't So Friendly:

So Roma didn't play yesterday? Game canceled? No? Oh, you mean they didn't show up yesterday? Gotcha.

Didn't see the game. Fortunately. All I got were a few whispers post-suckitude. A few people said that Roma basically took it as "going through the motions" while Borussia Dortmund looked at it as D-Day in Normandy. Of course, that could also be a polite way of saying "Roma sucked. Big time." Either way, it isn't far off what I expected. Dortmund has quite a bit of training and a few friendlies under their belt and is certainly more in form than anyone Spalletti tossed out onto the pitch. I think this is quite evident from the fact that the majority of player showed up at Trigoria with skin pigments resembling that of the Nigerian Super Eagles. I know they're Italian so they're tan to begin with, but a lot of them looked like they'd spent the last 2 months super-glued to a beach chair in Sardinia. I don't think they're exactly match-fit yet.

As far as individual performances, I haven't heard much. I heard Curci would have been more effective if he just parked a rocking chair in front of the net and let the ball come to him. Vucinic was supposedly pretty good and Barusso was phenomenal - or at least looked hugely impressive. Hey, if this whole Roma thing doesn't work out, he's got the WWE to fall back on. Something like "The Ghanaian Gladiator" might work.

I didn't even have to see the game to say that this was a) not really unexpected and b) a good thing. Number one, they've been training for less than a week. What did you expect going up against a vastly underrated Bundesliga team? A cake walk? Please. They don't have fitness, form, familiarity or any other F-words you can come up with. Number two, I'll bet they're a little bit peeved now, wouldn't you say? That's embarrassing after the silly scorelines Inter & Juventus have been putting up. I'd say the first friendly of the season is the perfect time for someone to open up a can of whoop ass on them (that's two wresltling references in two paragraphs - sincere apologies). It's a much more preferable circumstance than having a similar score line in the quarterfinals of the CL. Now their asses can be in gear from the get go. Grazie Borussia Dortmund.

Also, I kinda liked those kits. I doubt the away kit will vary greatly from that one, with the big Kappa logo on the shoulder and asroma written somewhere on the shorts. Though maybe I'm biased due to the big S.P.Q.R. across the chest. What a statement. "Screw sponsors, we're playing for people and an ideology." Can we keep those for the season? Please?

Chivugate:

Should know by Thursday? Uh huh.

€14m plus Marco Andreolli and I'm sure Spalletti will pack his bags for him. I'd say that "50% he stays" is closer to 5%. Nobody wants this, it's just a matter of how much Inter wants him right now. An extension would be nice, but I just cannot foresee it happening.

News & Notes:

I) Monaco wants Marco Cassetti, eh? He seems like he would do well in Ligue 1, how much he wants to move from a CL Serie A squad to a mid-table French club. Unless they pick someone up, he's going to play quite a bit. This seems like one of those Fabio Grosso situations to me though. Everybody wrote it off as stupid speculation, then a week later he's inking a contract with Lyon. Just food for thought.

* - Maybe they're a bit closer to one of their coveted RBs than we think (ahem, Cicinho)

II) I'm really beginning to wish Matteo Brighi was born in England. Could you imagine the headache the bookies would have in trying to predict whether he stays or goes? Because they'll take bets on anything. I'd throw ten quid down on him staying. I'll also throw 20 quid down on K-Fed fathering a child within the next fortnight. (I have no idea what that means, but it sounded good)

III) Vincent Candela and Marco Delvecchio want back? Both will play for next to nothing? Neither expect to play much, if at all? Why the hell not? It's not like they'd kill the locker room demanding more playing time. I like it, but I doubt it'll happen.

IV) It looks like Gianluca Curci is staying. I can't say anything about yesterday's performance because I haven't even seen the highlights, but let's just hope we don't see too many repeats of that scoreline this season.

V) Also, if you didn't know, the new Kappa kits are supposed to be ready for the 80th anniversary celebration on Thursday and will be used in the friendly against Bayer Leverkusen next Sunday. Good. Another German team.

* - I didn't get to read up on the comment thread from the Flapdoodle until Saturday, but I'd just like to say thanks to everyone for the kind words and whatnot. I don't do this to hear myself speak (mostly), or read what I write, so I'm glad it's valued. Because this is a somewhat frequent occurrence, I got to thinking in transit yesterday that maybe I could actually make things better by not limiting the discussion to Roma. That maybe if I was to explore the world outside of Roma, if there actually is one, that people might enjoy it. So I figured why not start up a little blog on more than Roma and football, and expand to other sports and pop culture, including anything and everything involving the Former Soviet Bloc. Roma, for some reason, I take more seriously and from the vantage point of a fan like myself, so this one will be a little less, shall we say, formal. Here's the site, and I'll need plenty of help from the regulars with ridiculous topics to discuss, obviously the upcoming Miami Vice-Dinosaucers movie is on the docket, as is the plight of the middle reliever - I promise not to dedicate it to the Red Sox. In the immortal words of Jared Leto "We don't do that stuff, there are enough people who do it well enough so that we don't have to." Except he was referring to writing love songs. Whatever. Same difference. Oh, and that's not the quote, it's just kind of a general idea of what he said. I think. Damnit, I'm not writing about the Sox. Got it? Good. Moving on. And worry not, I'll still follow Roma here in a very very unhealthy manner.

GHD will be up tomorrow. Apologies to the women who had to go a whole 5 days without ogling beautiful footballer hair.