If you're sports fandom is anything like mine at the moment, you're subsisting solely on NFL Draft stories and the smattering of Serie A transfer rumors we catch every day. In the absence of actual matches, these events have lived on, primarily because they've always existed in the land of speculation; they're the drought resistant plants in our corona desert.
With the rumor mill hitting a low point, earlier this week we ran through a list of free agents that Roma might make a play for this summer. Some, like Giacomo Bonaventura or Jan Vertonghen, were plausible additions, while others, like Thomas Meunier and Edinson Cavani, are probably a bit unrealistic, but they're all worth exploring.
And, lo and behold, as we creep towards the weekend, a few of those names are starting to gain traction in the papers, so let's take a quick look at the rumors.
According to multiple sources, including Sky, Roma are prepping an offer for the 30-year-old Bonaventura, who, as we just discussed, is an impending free agent. Per the rumor, Roma are prepared to offer Bonaventura a three year contract worth a reported €2 million a season, which matches his current wages and would put him on par with Gianluca Mancini and Lorenzo Pellegrini. Bonaventura is a solid midfielder when healthy, but his last two Serie A seasons have essentially been a wash, as he's tallied only 16 starts since the start of the 2018-2019 seasons.
Earlier today, Football Italia reported that Roma are doing their due diligence on Pedro, Chelsea's soon-to-be 33-year-old winger, reporteldy considering a three-year deal worth €3 million per season. Reportedly a winter request of Paulo Fonseca, this rumor might have some legs, but dear god, please don't pay an aging winger €9 million—this has disappointment written all over it.
Here's one from the winter; Roma's pursuit of former Juventus and current Everton striker Moise Kean. Nicolo Zaniolo's best friend hasn't exactly taken to life in Merseyside, even after the arrival of Carlo Ancelotti. After making the Everton switch on a €27.5 million move last summer, Kean's Everton career has amounted to a grand total of 706 league minutes, one goal and two assists. Football Italia didn't source their rumor, but intimate that the clubs are willing to negotiate on the 20-year-old.
Ünder Has Admirers Abroad
Speaking of Everton, the Toffees are reportedly keen on Cengiz Ünder, with Carlo Ancelotti reportedly set to reignite his interest in the 22-year-old winger, whom he wanted at Napoli. Joining the queue for Ünder is the man who brought him to Roma to begin with—Monchi, with Sevilla reportedly itching to bring him to La Liga.
You know our stance on selling Ünder—no chance in hell should Roma give up on him yet.
Cristante for Mandragora
Anytime Roma enter into a rumored swap with Juventus, parts of your body should immediately pucker up. Roma seldom gets the better of Juve in transfer negotiations, but a Bryan Cristante for Rolando Mandragora trade is an interesting one (Juve would first have to exercise their buy-back option with Udinese). By now, it's painfully obvious that Cristante isn't cut-out for life as a pure defensive midfielder, so it wouldn't be entirely shocking to see Roma move on from Cristante, but wouldn't it just be Roma's luck for the Old Lady to unlock his talents? Mandragora in and of himself would be a decent addition, but Cristante's ceiling seems a lot higher, so I hope Fonseca can find a suitable role to develop his still enormous potential.
It's going to be interesting to see how the transfer market plays out this summer. Between the suspended seasons, the loss of revenues and the concomitant depreciation in player and club values, it could be a feast or famine summer for many clubs, especially one currently (we think...still...maybe) under going a change in ownership like Roma.