While we kill time before discussing this weekend's Atalanta fixture, we take a quick jaunt through the news, much of which focuses on off-the-pitch concerns. In this addition, we look at some lovely words from Rudi Garcia and Rodrigo Taddei, some new investors in the club, and the fate of a former Roma executive.
I do not believe that Roma are being persecuted, I do not think about these things. The only thing that matters is doing well and if Destro is not there then there will be someone else....The appeal? It is logical that we can win it. He is not a violent player, at all. Football is a contact sport, players fight to take position on the field and these things happen. It is true that Mattia gave him a slap, but the referee saw everything, he whistled against him and normally the rule states that there can be no video evidence when the referee saw the situation. I think now this is more than video evidence.
In typical fashion, Rudi Garcia took a measured approach when prompted about Mattia Destro's suspension, refuting claims that his club is unduly scrutinized by league officials, while also calming fears that Roma will collapse without Destro's presence.
There is no debating it, Destro blatantly struck Davide Astori, but Garcia really touches upon Roma's true gripe; the use of video evidence in the first place. Of course, the fact that the league resorted to such a measure is the touchstone of the persecution claims, but that's neither here nor there. Rudi Garcia is really becoming a master tactician of the Roman media, and his even keel throughout Roma's latest melodramma is testament to his tactful approach.
Let's just hope his confidence in this appeal is justified.
If you needed further reason to love him, Rudi Garcia just provided it in spades.
Speaking to his initial goals upon taking the position, Garcia says:
the first thing to do was to put a smile back on the players' faces and then do the best on the field to make the fans proud of their own team. We have already reached that goal, and I am proud of that
Garcia then heaped effusive praise on his captain:
The greatest players in football are always the most ordinary and modest men who play for their team. That's how Francesco is, he always thinks about the good of Roma. He is one of the greatest players in the history of football. Those who have got such talent can show it in Europe, too. Too bad for this season, but we'll be there next year.
Lastly, Garcia offered his thoughts on the table:
Being ahead in the standings is the only thing that matters. I want to make sure that my Roma have an identity...I am very ambitious, it's normal. I am really in love with Roma. It's easy to feel Romanista and Roman. The city is beautiful, I like the language. Six games are left, we must do well. Daje Roma.
Beyond the performance of the club itself, one of the biggest surprises this season has been the resurgence of Rodrigo Taddei, but did you know he was almost never a Roma player? Upon leaving Siena, Taddei narrowed his choices down to Roma and Juventus
I could have won more, but I would never trade what I won in Rome with any Juventus trophy, with all the due respect. I have a unique relationship with this team...I wish I was nine years younger, so I could start over my story with Roma. I want to keep playing until I’m fit, then I will hang up my boots and I will say goodbye
It's difficult for any 34-year-old midfielder to play their way into a new contract, but Taddei is certainly laying the groundwork to do just that, proving to be an able and adaptable substitute for Rudi Garcia.
Following information already disclosed to the market on 26 March 2014, AS Roma SPV, LLC, the majority shareholder of NEEP Roma Holdings S.p.A. (the controlling shareholder of AS Roma S.p.A.), and Starwood Capital Group a private U.S. based leading global investment firm, informs that an agreement has been formalized among the parties pursuant to which Starwood Capital Group, through a controlled affiliate, ASR SOF-IX Investment L.L.C., became an equity investor of AS Roma SPV With this news it appears that Roma has made a move to inject more capital and more business acumen into their operation, adding Starwood Capital Group to their cadre of investors. In this instance, a representative of Starwood will hold a seat on AS Roma SPV's Investor Committee.
Cut your way through all the white collar business talk and what really matters is this:
All decisions of the AS Roma SPV Investor Committee will continue to require the vote of a majority of its members, and Mr. Pallotta will continue to remain in control of the day-to-day operations of AS Roma S.p.A.
So, on the surface, this arrangement simply seems to be a way for people with money to help their friends make more money, and, in the process, make more money themselves. But whatever it takes to get this stadium underway, we'll take it, right?
Don't consider this a call for his return, but Franco Baldini bolting Roma for Spurs was a pretty big deal at the time; one which, in retrospect, Roma made out quite well, but it's safe to say Baldini's London excursion hasn't gone according to plan, leading to speculation that he may be shown the door at the end of this season.
I suppose its a bit of double irony that his regime was probably done in by Erik Lamela's less than stellar transition to life in the Premiership. But Baldini is, by most accounts, a reputable man, so let's wish him well.
So that's it for now, we'll have our usual preview up in the next day or so.