Whether it’s down to the player himself, someone in his entourage or the always asymmetrical negotiation process with Premiership clubs, Roma transactions involving Edin Dzeko have never been simple. First there was the protracted #DaretoDzeko campaign during the summer of 2015, when Roma was seemingly always a step away from landing the deal, only to see it drag on for weeks, and now this—the #DareToDumpDzeko saga is, it seems, dead in the water.
A mere 72 hours ago it seemed like Monchi made James Pallotta’s wet dream come true. In one fell swoop Roma were not only alleviating themselves from the burden of having a young, cost controlled and extremely talented full-back but they were also going to show their top scorer the door, netting €60 million in the process! What could go wrong?
While Roma still make hay on Emerson Palmieri (roughly €26 million), it seems as though the Dzeko half of that deal has been scuppered due to some contractual disputes between Dzeko and Chelsea, with the Blues offering only an 18-month contract and Dzeko’s camp holding out for a new two-year pact. That difference of six months has apparently stopped the deal dead in its tracks, robbing Pallotta of that sweet cheddar in the process.
While Dzeko has been dead as a doornail this season, with Patrik Schick looking at three weeks on the sideline, and with Gregoire Defrel being, well, Gregoire Defrel, Dzeko remains Roma’s only option at the moment, so in the immediate sense Roma are actually somewhat better off, assuming EDF can figure out a way to get the best out of him.
The long run, however, is less certain. With that €30ish million now off the table, Pallotta and Monchi will set their sale eyes on another target this summer, be it Radja Nainggolan, Kostas Manolas, Lorenzo Pellegrini or the club towel boy. Come hell or high water, they’ll make up for that loss of revenue.
But then there are the psychic effects this near sale turned dead will have on the club. If Edin Dzeko, last season’s capocannoniere, and Emerson Palmieri, an eminently affordable player with a limitless ceiling, can be sold, then there are no sacred cows in this locker room. Everyone has a price, and everyone has a market.
Couple that with the constant managerial upheaval and the always tense atmosphere around the city and club, and it’s any wonder Roma can recruit anyone to this squad.
So Dzeko will return to a club that was hell bent on selling him and to a manager that has no fucking clue how to use him, and we’re supposed to expect him to be motivated?
This season has quickly unravelled into an utter mess.