With no Roma match for four days and with the silly season on the horizon, the transfer rumors have been percolating in a major way. Read the usual sources and you’ll be quite shocked with the amount of turnover Roma may experience this summer. And yes, it may ultimately prove false, but these stories seem to start earlier and earlier every year, but with Roma facing uncertainty in the director’s room and on the touchline, we simply have no idea what philosophy, if any, will be guiding this team in the near future.
With that in mind, let’s take a quick trip through the Romasphere and tackle some of these rumors.
A year ago I wouldn't have imagined being worried about stories like these, in fact I probably would have had a sensible chuckle, but Wojciech Szczesny's transformation into one of the best keepers in the league, one who leads in clean sheets, has muddied the waters a bit. And when I say muddy, I mean muddy. Not only does Napoli already have a decent first choice keeper themselves in the form of Pepe Reina, but Roma simultaneously has ample reason to keep and dispatch of Woj.
As we all know, Roma spent a pretty penny on Alisson Becker, who has shown tremendous potential in his intermittent duty between the sticks and would seem like the keeper of the future, but Szczesny has, as we mentioned, cemented himself among the league's best keepers, certainly one a team with ambitions would want to hang onto.
This may not be the sexiest transfer rumor of the summer, but it may be the most impactful.
But it doesn't stop there. If you believe all these rumors, Roma will pull the double this summer, directly reinforcing two of their direct rivals. Football Italia passed along a report by Sky Sport Italia that would have you believe that Kostas Manolas is heading to Inter for a mere €30 million, signing a €3 million per year contract.
I don't even know where to begin on this one. Inter is loaded in every facet of the game except defense. Put Manolas in front of Samir Handanovic and you may never score on Inter, so why on earth they would make this sale is beyond me--move him to Arsenal, sure, but why make Inter even better? They're going to make a lot of noise in Serie A next season and the last thing Roma should do is make their road easier.
On the flipside of the coin, if Manolas is truly a part of Roma's future, give the man his cheddar. Inter certainly won't be the last team to tempt Greece Lightning with a fatter paycheck, €3 million per season isn't unreasonable for a player of his caliber.
This one picks up from our prior Navas story, but with one wrinkle: the deal is already in place. Romanews passes along a quick mention from the Corriere dello Sport that suggests a three-year €3 million per season contract has already been prepped for Navas. I'm all in favor depth, but if you can offer Navas, a 30+ midfielder/winger three million per year, why are you so stingy with Manolas, a 25-year-old in his prime defender?
Romanews offers a brief tidbit vis Sky Sport about Roma's chances of keeping Nainggolan this summer. In brief, they're not good. With Chelsea willing to go north of €40 million, the Italian rumor mongers don't like Roma's odds of hanging onto Nainggolan. For my money, you have to say no to any offer for Nainggolan, he's simply too important to the club, in mind, body and spirit.
We'll end it on a positive note. Last week we reported on the impending deal between Roma and Atalanta for young Franck Kessie, the one where Roma would hand over €28 million for the Ivorian midfielder. Well, now Roma news via CDS takes it a step further, citing contract details--Roma are, surprise, surprise, attempting to lowball Kessie, offering €1.5 million per season, some three hundred grand shy of Kessie's demands, over a five year deal. Doesn't seem like an insurmountable difference, so hopefully the deal will get done. If you had any doubts about his ability, look no further than his bully of Roma's wingers in their last matchup. This kid can play.