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The King Plays, Sven Speaks & Peruvian Beasts

20070807151026484.jpgThe King Has Re-Entered The Building

Let's get this out of the way first: Roma played a "friendly" yesterday (I'd be shocked if it was anything more than a scrimmage). They won. No one cares. King Alberto played the full 90 and scored a peno to boot. All hail the king. Fantastic news, but no word of Sunday from what I've seen thus far.

* - Yes, Roma has a game this weekend. No, I can't believe it either. The fact that I have to start thinking about a match preview is either proctologist's fingers or blonde, leggy Swedish masseuse on the titillation scale. (The latter being welcome, the former - not so much.) Can't decide which.

Sven Has Been Taking JMA's Mancini Hard-On Inducing Cialis

Breaking news headline this morning, apparently. It's gone from "was that a Mancini rumor?" to "whoa, Sven, keep your pants on - guess it was" in the matter of 48 hours or so. The interview which led to this mass-Mancini hysteria:

“I want Mancini here immediately as he is the ideal man to strengthen my squad,” Eriksson told Il Romanista. “He could become my Cristiano Ronaldo.

“Money isn’t a problem for us, but it depends on whether Roma want to sell him.

“I know that contract talks have hit a brick wall, but we will have to talk to his agent Gilmar Veloz.”

I dunno that there's much more to say about that. It depends on that whole "money ain't a problem" thing. Even if they don't want to sell midseason - I've never been an advocate of dumping key players during the winter, but Mancini hasn't exactly been overly productive this season - wheelbarrows of money is something they need to consider, at least from the business aspect. Depends on contract status and what they think his real contribution will be in the second half of the season. If it's anything like the first, and he's going to be sold over the summer anyway - you take that deal all day, every day.

Then there's the possibility that a replacement has already been hand picked, which brings me to.................

A Club Official Confirming A Roma Rumor? Say It Is So

Club administrative delegate, which sounds like a lot of fancy for "guy who does all the talking", Pietro Lo Monaco, has said that:

“Last summer Roma were the first club to take an interest in Vargas,” said Lo Monaco.

“Catania and Roma have really excellent relations and this could open the door for negotiations for Vargas to become a Giallorosso.

“We want Vargas to leave in June. It is a transfer that will be good for all parties.”

First of all, fair play to Catania here. How often do you hear a club say, "Yeah, we're too good for him. We can't wait to see him play for a team that deserves him."? Finally, a realist. You don't see that often, especially with clubs hailing from Sicily. (I'm looking at you, Zampa.)

So it certainly looks like Roma has a leg up on the competition, and it's being said via other, less reliable (at least that "administrative delegate") avenues that iTunes would be going in the other direction, as part of a like for like swap (plus a few millions from the Roman side, just a few). And honestly, it makes sense for both teams. It's hard to say that iTunes has proven himself capable enough for a lengthy Serie A run, but he is a talent and would probably be welcomed into the Catania side. So the Sicilians get an assload of money, a capable replacement (at least on the short term/loan), and Roma gets a superstud to maraud down the left hand flank and kick guys in the face. Every team could use a little bit of Gatusso.

Now here's where this fits in with the Mancini shenanigans. We've seen that TGIP has taken a liking to throwing a fullback out on the wing in lieu of Espo, Giuly or whomever. Vargas can also play wing, thus becoming a helluva replacement for either the wing or LB, and fitting into the Spalletti system from nearly all angles. So even if it's now, or in the summer, Vargas is giving another added option as a replacement for Mancini, if/when he eventually goes. Which is why these two quotes, from Lo Monaco and Sven Goran Fucktard, seem to be quite the coincidence...

As far as Vargas goes. We could probably at least start talking 8-10m, before factoring in iTunes. And I'd put him at a Pussycat Doll at the moment, considering Catania just seems to be in love with the idea of JMV going to Rome. (This is before all the bigger checkbooks start showing up, looking for some Peruvian action. But it seems tailor-made for a Roman deal.)

(And yeah, he could perhaps play in another formation. Just sayin'.)

And Catania's president is agreeing that Vargas could come to Rome. Hmmmmm.

* - Keepers & rumor bonanza later tonight. Tough week.