Maybe it’s because I’ve had more time on my hands this summer, but I honestly can’t recall a time during the past five years or so when Roma’s transfer coverage was so relentless, and yet so squarely focused on several key names. It’s sort of a chicken and egg scenario: is the persistent pursuit of those names fueling the coverage, or has the 24/7 coverage necessarily inflated the intensity of those rumors. Never mind the fact that egg definitively came before the chicken (it would have been from a different species that evolved into the chicken), the analogy still fits.
All of which brings us to Patrik Schick, August’s version of Riyad Mahrez. After failing his Juventus medical earlier this summer due to a temporary cardiac ailment, Schick is once again on the open market, and depending on where and when you read the news, Roma may or may not be leading that chase.
Yesterday we discussed Roma’s reported €38 million offer, believed to be a two-year loan with a mandatory purchase clause, which many outlets report was the largest bid Sampdoria has received to date. While Juventus and PSG appear to be laying in wait, Inter Milan have apparently approached Samp with a loan and option to buy package, something the Marassi outfit isn’t keen to accept.
So that was all the “news” that was fit to print Monday. Today very little has changed, save for massive amounts of speculation. With his €25 million release clause not technically valid at the moment, some believe Shick will remain at Sampdoria this season, and then presumably jumping ship to Juve next summer, with his countryman and Juve legend Pavel Nedved greasing the wheels.
As far as Sampdoria is concerned, the lone party in this mess who actually stands to make a massive profit, club president Massimo Ferrero admits that Roma are leading the charge, presumably because they’re willing to offer €30 + million right off the bat. However, according to Sky Sport, Inter remains Shick’s preferred destination.
So it appears that what we have here is a good old fashioned Italian standoff, one in which Roma are wielding the weakest weapon. Sampdoria’s motivation is clear, get that money, but will Schick’s preferences force them to wait?
We shall see, but it certainly seems as though this will garner plenty of headlines for the next week or so. Stay tuned.
Update: Multiple Italian outlets report that Roma and Sampdoria are meeting tonight to discuss the framework of a deal potentially worth €30 million. Though the details remain hazy, it’s believed Roma would pay €25 million upfront.
Update #2: Those same outlets report that Roma and Sampdoria have agreed to a €30 million + bonuses deal for Schick. However, in testament to how twisted this world is, the deal is being delayed because Schick’s agent will reportedly receive a bigger piece of the pie should his client move to Inter. Why these agents don’t receive a standard percentage fee is beyond me, though.