Roma's virtual overstock.com of wingers was always bound to be a problem this season. What once stood as a simple logistical and/or timeshare nightmare is seemingly headed towards a discount sale of one or more of Roma's spare parts, though that definition depends on one's views of the club's legion of wide players. Between Victor Ibarbo, Mohamed Salah, Juan Iturbe, Iago Falque...you know what, my fingers are getting tire recounting Walter Sabatini's incompetence in this regard. Point being, there are six to seven men for two positions. Something was always bound to give.
While we were almost spared this nightmare scenario when Gervinho was seemingly headed to Al-Jazira, it now seems as though one of Adem Ljajic or Juan Iturbe, who has been linked to Genoa and Fiorentina recently, are being sacrificed to Garcia's insatiable desire for pacey wingers.
Say what you will about Nutella or Manu, but on their worst days they're more skilled and hold more promise than either of Gervinho or Ibarbo. To think that players with as much talent and potential as Ljajic and Iturbe, each of whom are still so young, are being sacrificed for one-dimensional runners like Gervinho or Ibarbo speaks volumes about Walter Sabatini's ability to construct a side.
However, now that there are only a matter of days for Roma to reduce these redundancies, we can expect the pace (no pun intended) of these rumors to increase. First at the door is Aston Villa. According to multiple sources, Villa are in talks with Roma for Ljajic and/or Gervinho, though they are said to prefer Ljajic because, well, because they have eyes.
It's hard to know precisely what to make of that link above, simply because they're citing so many different sources, each of whom has their own subtle wrinkle to add to the story. According to the Corriere dello Sport, Villa have only turned to Ljajic because their advances for Gervinho were...get this...rejected! Rejected! Roma actually said no to someone willing to take Gervinho on of their own accord! In what universe are they in a position to turn down an offer for this bum?
If his declining performances on the pitch weren't enough reason to cash out, the fact that he may now be the source of an internal revolt—with established players reportedly upset with Garcia's blind love for him causing a rift after last weekend's match—should be the final straw, even if they have to take a loss on The Predator.
Football Italia also picked up on an additional Italian-sourced rumor that throws Spurs into the Ljajic mix as well. Which, if that the case, fucking hell, a Ljajc-for-Erik Lamela swap benefits everyone involved. However, since common sense seldom rules the roost in these scenarios, I won't hold my breath.
Transfer rumors are frustrating under normal circumstances. Throw three teams into the mix, each of whom are already getting desperate in this young season, with only a week or so to go before the transfer window closes and you've got a shit storm of epic proportions brewing.
Baseless rumors or not, I'd say it's even odds that one of Ljajic, Gervinho or Iturbe are collecting their next paycheck somewhere else.
So cross your collective fingers and pray that it's Gervinho.