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Totti Today #54: Change is cheap

Roma started its 2015-2016 season with a draw away to Hellas Verona and a rather mediocre and uninspiring display. Yup, it seems like March or April all over again. Serie A’s back and thus Roma’s back in our lifes. Better get used to it.

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Tom Jones

Tupac once sang I see no changes. Then there’s It’s the same old song, from the Four Tops. Everything changes but you, from Take That. Or the famous quote from the Fallout games: War, war never changes. Sounds familiar? They do because they all so painfully remind us of a certain football club, AS Roma. It challenged Hellas without its 1st choice LB or a decent and healthy third-choice CB or even eternal symbol Totti, who was benched in Roma’s opening game for the first time since…. Well, since humans invented radio, Will Smith produced great movies and Tom Jones was still a boy. In other words: A very very long time. Bravo, Garcia!

May 31, 2015. Roma-Palermo, 1-2. Nearly three months later and Roma still is in the same position. There’s something wrong with Roma but we can’t describe it even if our life depended on it. Bar the defensive unit, there’s quality and bodies galore but Rudi can’t seem to make it click. And he looks to have lost the plan. Torosidis at LB is understandable since Palmieri is nowhere near ready for that role, plus Cole is AWOL. Florenzi at RB I can understand as well because Maicon was injured and Torosidis already occupied. But Yao starting? And Ibarbo as a sub? Adem and Totti didn’t get a single minute even though Roma lacked creativity and don’t have a midweek game + there’s an international break coming soon…


It sounds strange but should it surprise us, the fans? Even after three months Garcia is being stubborn and eager to prove he’s right. His profound love for Gervinho, the 4-3-3 and boring, ignorant press conferences are paralyzing this club. We need a wind of change. Juventus surprisingly lost at home so they’ll be firing on all cilinders next week at the Olimpico. A 1/6 might end the Rudi Garcia.

Why? Because we were spoiled by Rudi’s previous records from the start (10 consecutive wins in his first season, last season 5 wins) so this is a personal blow for him as well. But a win next week and Roma already has 4 points more than Juve. All other top teams had mixed results last weekend. Inter, Lazio won but didn’t really impress. Milan, Napoli, Juve are below Roma at this point. It’s not much but it’s something, right? Lady Luck is present, Roma can’t let her down. Week 1 is behind us and it promises to be a tight race.

What needs to be done? First: At least two additions in defence. Digne or Kolasinac at the very least and a proven CB. Norbert Gummybear (my Hungarian is bad) is just here to increase the body count. Read: some Coppa Italia games and a half an hour against Carpi or Empoli.


Second: a wind of change (yes, another song, from The Scorpions). Finally. The 4-2-3-1, 4-3-1-2, 3-5-2… it worked with Capello after Zeman, Spalletti after Del Neri, with Ranieri when Spalletti left, … This 4-3-3 has been lurking in Rome for too long now. Enrique, Zeman and now Rudi for two consecutive seasons. It’s nice when it works. If it works. 2013-2014 was a success because Rudi was a fresh face and Walter did smart transfers. But anno 2015 the formula has worn out. We’re fed up with it, yet Roma has a tonload of wingers in its squad. You can’t simply transform them all into fullbacks like Florenzi.

Both Rudi and Garcia have some work to do this week. There’s no reason to jump ship or grab the pitchforks yet. Roma did create some chances, unfortunately Hellas’ keeper had a very good day. But we all know a good start is vital in Serie A, there are going to be some tough CL games in the near future. Thank God Florenzi still knows how to score great goals and Daniele saved us with a goal-line clearance. See, not ALL things have to change in the capital.

Roma’s officially taken off, enjoy the ride! ... You can read that with or without a sarcasm font.