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Totti Tuesday: The assignment

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As I am writing this piece, I’m also putting the last hand to a school assignment. Not just merely an assignment but THE assignment of all assignments!

Giuseppe Bellini

The Loria of all defenders, the Tonetto of all left flank crosses, the Totti of all spits, the Corvia of all previously hyped Roman forwards… My thesis. The last stretch before my graduation. So pardonnez-moi if this week’s contribution is a little meagre. Kinda like Menez’ physique or Roma’s Serie A loot the last couple of weeks. Hey, speaking of Roma…

Even during harsh, stressy and busy days like these full of deadlines, I still find time to sit down and think and write about La Roma. With a (insert severly dangerous and addictive alcoholic beverage here) at hand of course, I’m only human. Trying to understand this team, players, coach, history and fans. And I always come back to the same pattern over and over again: ‘Roma don’t do easy’. It has always been a rollercoaster, ups and downs, good times, bad times, fans and the club never had it easy. And I’ve been following the Giallorossi since 2002, I have seen some sh*t back in the day young man and/or woman. Under Spalletti, Bruno Conti, Ranieri, Zeman, Montella… There has always been a backlash or points of improvement. That doesn’t make the road to our goals any less exciting though. It’s the main reason why we are all here and you are reading this.

As if the Napoli loss wasn’t enough, Kevin ‘Deep Sthroat’ Strootman is out for several months, effectively ending his season, World Cup 2014 and pre-season. Even a big part of 2014-2015 might be at risk as well. Via this blog, I’d like to wish Kev all the best. The only positive thing I can come up with (and I’m being very very optimistic and a bit drunk right now) is that Kevin now is a certainty next season. Teams like PSG or Man United won’t dare to gamble big on a player coming back from such an injury. Unless of course offers arrive entering Marquinhos territory. Strootman can now begin his long road to recovery and fully focus on his next season in Serie A and hopefully Champions League. If he feels down or desperate, he can always ask advice from Totti. But if there’s one man on this team who can come back even stronger than before, it’s Kev.

The game itself Sunday evening was hot ‘n cold. Roma deserved more and made Napoli’s life hard but injuries blablabla missing chances yadda yadda yadda suspensions… In the end, the loss is no shame as we all know Napoli away is a living hell after the Coppa. It does come at a bad time, with Napoli at -3 while the game in hand (Parma) still seems miles away from us. One can say Roma’s been experiencing it’s first real ‘crisis’ of the season, although I know Garcia will hate that word. Two wins in six games, only four goals scored during that period (two from midfielders Pjanic and Radja), two losses in one month time. To be fair, there were Roman times those statistics actually meant progression (cough Enrique cough). But this is not the same Roma anymore, there are obvious holes to be filled and shrewd trainers know our system by now. Suspensions or injuries like De Rossi and Totti don’t help either. And even though it’s already March, fans are still spoiled by those record ten consecutive wins from the start and the good spell in January/February.

History repeats itself and like so many times in Roma’s history, they have to fight for their place at the top. And fight hard. Daniele’s still two games suspended, a 34-year-old Taddei has to take Strootman’s place, Totti’s return another week delayed while anyone who can name me three current Roma players who are at their peak this season, deserves to be mentioned in my thesis with a big fat #SWAG, #YOLO or #BFF.