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Adrian Pit. Hero.

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SOCCER-ITALY/The Pits

It's now or never for that headline.

Now it is.

Adrian has joined up with the fellers to do absolutely nothing of note for about six months, look almost passable as a professional footballers against Cesena and then strike the dagger with a beautiful cross to setup the winning goal before heading on loan to Empoli. Or something.

But seriously - the season can now begin. Adrian Pit (Pronounced 'Piz') is in the house.

Burdisso

Would you two quit fucking around? Roma: should've taken care of this in January. Inter: you valued Burdisso at 'possibly rescind his contract' a year ago - stop acting like he suddenly became 10m times the player.

Now roll up the sleeves, roll down the skirts, pull up some chairs, sit around the table, leave the barbs at the door and get the fuck on with it. Simone Loria is scoring goals in friendlies, for Francesco's sake. He's a concussion away from looking 07/08 half-decent again and convincing everyone he might be worth a second chance, and we just can't have that.


Julio Baptista

Dear Jules,

I liked you. I even gave you this season because once, in a land far, far away, you were even good at football. Now you're not. Now you're the poor man's Pit who's pulling down millions to waste an extra 90 seconds of clock at the end of away fixtures to future Serie B stalwarts. An important job surely, but one which Montali and a circus reject could train a three-limbed monkey to do over the weekend, while still having time to paint the shutters (something gray-ish).

I blame your unrelenting reliance on playing how you think you play best rather than how to play best within the team dynamic. I blame the fact that the last time you made a forward run Luciano Spalletti looked like the follicular second coming of Andrea Pirlo (he transcends time). I blame the fact that the Down Syndrome cousin of that very same three-legged chimp knows you're going to drift to the left, either receive or deflect the ball twelve rows deep, eventually put the ball on your right foot, cut over a few steps and fire a booming shot into the lower leg region of a defender who makes in a year what you make by lunch most days. I blame the fact that you've played as the same unproductive, unsuccessful player over the course of a massive shift of coaching philosophy despite the fact that your main attribute was supposed to be some degree of versatility - and what a cruel joke that is. I blame the fact that Dunga keeps calling you up despite being absolute and utter rubbish for the last, oh, two years against anyone not named Sampdoria, and this would lead you to believe there's little to change.

Oh, and I blame you for bird flu, social networking (six of one...) and the fact that my drink just ran out. Two of those are entirely unacceptable. The other is bird flu.

Now, you have to go. And no longer because the team needs cash, but simply because you're a massive resource suck. Resources like money, playing time and oxygen. Plus you carry around an acoustic guitar, which puts you somewhere between "college kid trying to get girls" and "I'm 42 and I play in a band on the weekend with my buddies to get away from my wife and because I'm struggling to accept my life sucks" on The Loser Scale.

But mostly what hurts is that I defended you, and would still defend you if I could. But I can't. Why? Because you're a shell of the player you once were; not because of any deterioration of skills, but because you choose to be. Because you are not versatile, you do not play within the team dynamic or basic logic, and do the things which you think you're good at, rather than doing the things you truly are good at.

And that, my friend, is unacceptable. So go to Olympiakos or Tottenham or anyone that will have you - please, please do - or else stay with only one remaining choice: relearn how to play football. Like you used to.

Two choices, one bullet - what's it going to be?

xoxo,

This Guy

Notes

i. Marco Andreolli rumors depress me. Loan Lecce the latest.

ii.
Kiddies Simone Sini (the future?) and Andrea Bertolacci (a future?) have been confirmed to the new and once again Roma Lite, taking over for Siena, Lecce. This means two things: they have a much better chance of some meaningful playing time and the callup list for the Coppa just got a lot less fun.

iii. Artur's off to Sporting Braga for good, where he'll somehow have fewer Portuguese-speaking teammates.

A man who was made to look far, far worse by the emergence of Julio Sergio and then far, far better by the epic suckitude of one Alexander Donieber.

iv.
If the memory serves, Roma won their inaugural "friendly" (not really) against the local leper colony 13-0. Lots of people had goals, but the one that sticks out is John Arne Riise's triple - he's obviously still a long, long way from midseason form.

v. And of course:

Hero.