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Totti Today #73: A Letter to Luciano

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Time to get nostalgic people. At long last, the Poobah returns to Rome after an almost five and a half years absense, so it’s only natural I write a fitting (love) letter. Welcome back Luciano, Rome hasn’t been the same since you left…

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Dear Luciano,

Hi, how are you? It's been a while, no? You won't probably recognize me after all these years. I was just one of the thousands of young tifosi who fell in love with you, in a totally heterogenous way by the way. Not that there is anything wrong with bald people. Sure, they might look angry or stern but the inside is what coun.... Ahem, we're disgressing...

So, how long as it been? More than 5 years? Ah September 2009, now I remember. People usually bear in mind the bad periods of a trainer but in your case the positive ones definitely outweigh the negative ones. Just look at all the joy you brought back to the city during your stay. Before your arrival, no one would have even dared to dream of a Coppa, Supercoppa or Champions League quarter-final.

After a horrible 04-05 season in which Voeller, Conti and Del Neri all sat on the Roma bench and desperatly tried to work something out for Roma, you entered the fray and immedialty shook things up. And you never looked behind. Three consecutive second places (granted, in a post-Calciopoli era in Serie A), two Coppe Italia and some memorable nights in Europe. 2008-2009 was perhaps a letdown but let's not forget you didn't really get help from our sporting director back then: Diamoutene, Motta and Pit were brought in during the Winter Mercato. Good grief, if that happened now under American ownership, there would be riots in the streets of Rome AND New York.

Well, uh, I guessed I scared you, didn't I? Yup, you read that right, American ownership. The Sensi's are nothing more but a far, distant memory. Try to not be overwhelmed once you return, only Daniele and Totti remain from your era. Everything else: gone. New owners, new rules. It's called Brand Roma, better get used to it.

That's why we longed so much for your comeback. It's all been so... dull and boring. Okay, Ranieri was fun while it lasted but after that... Luis Enrique and his Barcelona experiment, the Zeman gamble, the gray Andreazzoli and derby loss in the Coppa Italia final... And then Rudi Garcia, the Frenchman. Your predecessor. Boy, did he leave his mark in Rome, in a both good and bad way. The start was great and refreshing but it all went downhill so very fast.

I especially missed the fun factor in Rome. The simple things that were executed so damn well on the pitch. Players fighting for each other. Or the man love after a goal. Gone. You had the talent of making average or less flashy footballers rise above themselves and even compete with the biggest and best players of the league or even Europe. Perrotta, Tonetto, Taddei, Cassetti,... God knows what you could have achieved in those years if you got more financial freedom and players like Strootman, Benatia, Pjanic, Lamela or Marquinhos.

Well, no use crying over spilt milk I know... Yet, all of this is in the past. Now, now is time to finish what you started. To undo previous mistakes, to finally have a say in our transfer strategy. To continue building your legacy in Rome. To make the people find their way back to the Olimpico once again.

You did it before, you can do it again. The younger fans will be in for a treat. Zeman was nostalgia, yet a huge gamble. But you my dear man, you are not a gamble. I can feel it. Your smile on recent pictures dont't lie: you're as motivated as ever, there's mutual understanding. In other words: You are home. Finally.

Let Florenzi become your Taddei, Pjanic your Pizarro, make Radja your Perrotta, make Salah your Mancini, mold Castan into your Juan and Manolas into Mexes.

But more importantly: make Daniele and Totti your generals on and off the pitch. They know and understand the influence you had on the history of AS Roma, the importance of your comeback. They need no further explanation. And to know this is only the start of something beautiful, until at least June 2017. And perhaps beyond!

It's time to let the feet do the talking once more. I, Jonas, welcome you, Luciano Spalletti, back in Rome with open arms. I feel so relieved to write this. Thank you, Mister.

It's true what they say, isn't it? Old loves never die