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Roma Close to Signing Schalke 04 Defender Matija Nastasic

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Nastasic could be an ideal change of scenery candidate for Roma.

Serbia v Wales - FIFA 2018 World Cup Qualifier Photo by Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images

With Antonio Rüdiger’s sale a firm 24 hours in their rearview mirror, Roma have apparently already lined up his ostensible replacement, as several media outlets report Schalke 04 defender Matija Nastasic is close to moving to the Italian capital. Nastasic, 24-years-old, is no stranger to Serie A, having played for Fiorentina during the 2011-2012 season, garnering over two dozen appearances in the process.

Nastasic’s fine play for Fiorentina didn’t go unnoticed, as Manchester City summarily snapped him up for a cool €24 million in the summer of 2012. While Nastasic’s City career started off well enough, he made over 20 league appearances during the 2012-2013 season, culminating in the club’s Young Player of the Year Award, he wasn’t long life in Manchester.

Having missed most of the 2013-2014 season due to injury and struggling to regain his place once he returned, Nastasic was loaned to Schalke in the winter of 2015. After settling into life in Germany, his loan move was made permanent later that year for the tidy sum of €12 million, or half of what City had just paid for him a year prior.

This past season was another solid one for the young Serbian, as he logged over 2,000 for Schalke, averaging 1.5 tackles and 2.1 interceptions per match in league play. While no one knows just how close or for how much he’ll move to Roma, the Gazzetta dello Sport claims he is “on the verge” of making yet another €12 million switch.

While Nastasic’s career seems to have taken a hit after his debut season with City, he’s still just 24-years-old, possess good size, technique and ability on the ball, so he may be the perfect reclamation project for Monchi’s Roma.