Robin Olsen, in both form and function, will probably always stand as a testament to the failures of the Monchi-era at Roma. After selling the best goalkeeper on the planet in Alisson Becker, Monchi took the World Cup bait and bit on the giant Swede, who, to be fair, was outstanding during Sweden's run in World Cup 2018. However, not only did Monchi ignore the golden rule of putting together a football team (ignore the World Cup at all costs), he massively over paid for the 29-year-old keeper who, it must be noted, never played anywhere beyond the Greek and Danish leagues before joining Roma.
Still, the football world is replete with late bloomers, so it wasn't out of the question to think Monchi saw something in Olsen the rest of the footballing world missed. But, yeah, then the season started and Olsen's flaws were on full display. While he is technically sound and uses his extreme length to his advantage, he was often times too passive attacking the ball or closing down an angles and, as we've since learned, his Italian was, uh, non-existent.
While Claudio Ranieri gave him a few chances after taking over for EDF, Olsen failed to step up and has since been relegated to deputizing Antonio Mirante. While David Duchovny's Italian stand-in has done well, he's not what one would call a long-term solution, so Roma will once again be keeper shoppin’ this summer.
Thus far we've been privy mostly to Alessio Cragno rumors, and while the young Cagliari keeper is an intriguing option, he may have some company in the rumor mill. RomaPress recently spoke to the agent of current Empoli keeper Bartłomiej Drągowski, better known as the guy who kept a clean sheet while facing 47 shots against Atalanta last week.
Drągowski, 21-years-old, has spent the season on loan from Fiorentina. The problem, as you may well know, is that the Viola have another impressive young keeper in the form of Alban Lafont, leading many to speculate about Drągowski's future, including his agent:
I think both Lafont and Dragowski are great young players. I believe that both should play at the highest level. Therefore, I think it’s difficult to have two goalkeepers of that quality on the same team — one must be on the bench.
We will see in the near future how everything will work out. I think Bart likes Italy, he knows the language and the league, so it would obviously be easier. A club like Roma always plays for the highest achievements…the Champions League. I believe it would be a step forward.
If these rumors prove to be true, it seems like Roma are keen on going the up and coming route for their next keeper, as both Cragno and Drągowski’s are in their early twenties. And we shouldn't be quick to dismiss Daniel Fuzato either, Roma's 21-year-old third stringer.
Of course, all of these rumors have been discussed and considered in a universe in which Roma can find a taker for Olsen, which I can't imagine will be a cut and dry affair.
Either way, the smart money is on Ricky Massara doing a massive overhaul of Roma's defense, the heart of which needs to be an athletic and Italian-speaking keeper.