Over the last few weeks we have dreamed big as Roma flirted with some of the biggest names on the coaching market. Of course, in typical Roma fashion, those flirtations have turned to nothing concrete and we are back at square one. With Conte, Mourinho, and now Sarri seemingly no longer options, Roma has had to turn its attention elsewhere. Yesterday, bren and Jimmy discussed Gasparini and Semplici, as potential options. However, there doesn’t seem to be a favorite at the moment after the latest rejection from Sarri.
Through the whole process there’s one man whose name has popped up here and there because, well, he’s currently the interim manager. Claudio Ranieri stepped into the inferno that has been Roma since EdF and Monchi’s oustings. He’s subdued the flames and settled the squad, keeping it in the European race all along. Yet, with all the big name rumors, he had only been mentioned as a potential fallback candidate. The safety net so to speak.
Well, the safety net has seemingly been torn to pieces as of Friday’s pre-match press conference. Ranieri was asked the following question:
You said that if Antonio Conte came here you’d go and pick him up from the airport yourself. What will you do now, will you stay here and not even go to Fiumicino?
Ranieri responded with the following:
“I came to Roma because my reaction to getting the call from the club, as a Roma fan, was one of excitement and good will. My job here runs until the end of this season.”
Later Ranieri was asked the following follow-up question if that response meant he was ruling out a stay at Roma:
When you say your work will be finished in a few weeks, are you ruling out staying at Roma? Since we talked about Conte, do you, as Roma coach, think there’s an environment for a successful project here in Rome?
Ranieri’s response confirmed what he alluded to in his first response when he answered the second time:
“When I signed here, my decision was to help the team I love in their moment of need. Once the season is over, my work here is done. I want to talk up Roma – this club is priceless. Of course I want speak positively about the team I love.”
There’s no knowing how legitimate of a candidate Ranieri truly would’ve been in the search for a permanent coach, beyond what has been speculated. However, that now is a moot point with the Roman tactician publicly stating that he has no plans to stay beyond his work over the next three weeks.
He will look to continue to the noble cause of saving Roma’s season out of his love for the club. However, there will be nothing more past that. Now, Pallotta and company can cross another seemingly viable candidate off their list. Where the coaching search turns next remains to seen and it looks like it could be a long and winding road. Buckle up for a wild ride.